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David McWilliams

Author, Journalist, Lecturer, Broadcaster and Documentary Maker

Voted the 10th most influential economist in the world, in his efforts to demystify the subject, David McWilliams brings the ‘dismal science’ of economics vividly to life.

David’s capacity to empower everyone from business leaders to the ordinary ‘Joe Soap’ with greater knowledge and confidence is key to David’s success not just as a journalist, author, lecturer, broadcaster and documentary maker, but also as an international conference and keynote speaker of considerable repute. Currently, as the Covid19 crisis rages, David is in much demand for his insights on the knotty complexities of the global economy.

Whether writing or speaking, David’s style is informal and confident, designed to get you thinking - usually a bit differently - about how the world economy functions as an ecosystem. His particular skill lies in telling individual business sectors and industrial groups how best to deal with trends in growth, currencies and financial markets.

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David McWilliams

David McWilliams is an economist, author, journalist, documentary-maker and broadcaster. He is Adjunct Professor of Global Economics at the School of Business Trinity College Dublin. David is ranked 10th most influential economist in the world.

The David McWilliams Podcast is ranked one of the most listened to Podcasts in Ireland.  Consistent with David's communication style,  he and co-presenter John Davis aim to make economics easy, uncomplicated and accessible in this weekly podcast.

He has devoted his entire professional life to the objective of making economics as widely available and easily understandable on as many platforms and to as many people as possible –and is having a laugh doing it.

As a result, he co-founded the world’s only economics and stand-up comedy festival Kilkenomics – described by the FT as “simply, the best economics conference in the world”. He also founded Ireland’s leading literary and ideas shindig, the Dalkey Book Festival. The WEF at Davos debased their currency profoundly by making him a Young Global Leader a few years back.

As well as writing a weekly economics column in the Irish Times, he is active on social media and was named Ireland’s “most influential Twitter user” in 2016. David uses new ways to explain our economic world for example Punk Economics and a new venture with the FT, Punk FT, deploy cartoons to make economics digestible for normal, non-nerdy, punters.

David has written four bestsellers and one of these The Pope’s Children is the best selling nonfiction ever published in Ireland. His writing style is described by Bloomberg’s head of economics Stephanie Flanders, as having “a great knack for bringing a complex economics story to life. He is also funny. In economics, that’s a rare and persuasive combination.”

Once upon a time, David had a few real jobs, working extensively in the public and private sectors. He was an economist in the International Relations Department of the Irish Central Bank; Chief European Economist at UBS, Europe’s largest bank; and Head of Emerging Markets Research at Banque Nationale de Paris.

  • Renaissance Nation : Why Ireland has been the most successful economy in the western world in the past 30 years!
  • Brexit : the implications
  • Globalisation : trade and the future of the world economy
  • What happens when global interest rates rise : financial markets, financial fragility and the next great crash
  • Embracing Disruption: Finding Opportunities in Crises

"On behalf of the National Recruitment Federation and the World Employment Conference we would like to thank you very much for taking part in the World Employment Conference 2018: Managing the Extended Workforce .  We enjoyed your presentation which was thought provoking and highly relevant to current discussions in the field.  The initial feedback from delegates has been very positive and I am sure your contribution will have stimulated ongoing reflection and discussion among delegates." - World Employment Conference, Dublin June 2018

"I can honestly say that the feedback was extremely positive and if you saw our photos of the attendees and their reaction to David's speech you would see how much they enjoyed it. Certainly in my discussions with our guests the concept identified by David of the "Good Room" really resonated with them. It is a real skill/ art form to speak without any prompts for over an hour in such an engaging way so please send David on our thanks for his contribution." - W&R Barnett Ltd, Oct 2017

"David was brilliant as he always is, couldn't have been better, he's a legend, had everyone eating out of his hand as usual! We'll do it again, will be in touch." - John McDonnell, Cathedral Finance, April 2016

"David joined us for a 2 hours session - smoothly organized by Personally Speaking - to think about and discuss the big global trends in geopolitics and economy.  Simply outstanding!  This is a guy who is simultaneously a deep thinker on substance and totally entertaining in the way he engages his audience.  It was inspiring, informative, provocative and hilarious.  So: Thanks, David!" - Till Olbrich, PMI, August 2015

"David went down so well with the client, he was outstanding!" Eleanor Bloem, Thundermark, July 2015

"David's delivery was super. His content was thought-provoking as always of course!" Andy O'Callaghan, PwC, June 2014

"David's speech was fantastic and very well received by the audience. Many thanks to you and your team for assisting us in organising this wonderful conference." Suresh Thyagarajan, FX & Interest Rate Sales, Treasury & Capital Markets, Bank Muscat, Nov 2013

"Your presentation to the Annual Investment Summit was perfectly pitched and brought exactly what we had hoped: a clear articulate view of the world with which we have a great deal of sympathy, delivered with wit and intelligence in an engaging and entertaining style. Our best Summit yet, and your contribution clearly helped’” - Neil Woodford, Head of UK Equities, Invesco Perpetual, July 2013.

“Your insightful presentation on ‘The European Outlook’, as well as your contribution as moderator on the Economists’ Panel Discussion at the 5th Global Financial Markets Forum 2013 was extremely well received and significantly contributed to the overall success of the forum. We sincerely appreciate your efforts in joining us for the 2nd time at this event and making yourself available for the private lunches and round-table sessions with our key clients.” - Michael H. Tomalin, Group Chief Executive, National Bank of Abu Dhabi

"We would like to express our sincere appreciation and delight in your attendance. Furthermore we are thankful to you for sharing your unique expertise on internationally sensitive topics. The ideas presented surely will leave a lasting impression on us all." -
Abdullah Al-Ahmadi, ICA Chairman, November 2012

"It was a huge success...The event was a compete sell out and David responded generously. If David is in town again please let us know!" - Eamon Eastwood, The Landsdowne Club, Sydney Australia, November 2012

"Last Thursday went very well and was a success for us. David’s presentation went down very well to the audience of about 150"
John Lucey, INVESCO, October 2012

"Everything went very well and we were absolutely delighted with David. He was just what we needed for the day." - Ciara Pelly, ICOS, May 2012

"I would like to thank you for your efforts in participating in our Fourth Financial Markets Forum 2012. The Event was remarkably successful with over 600 attendees and it would not have been possible without your efforts and contribution. Your participation certainly enhanced the profile of our line-up of international speakers" - Mahmood Al Aradi, SEVP - Financial Markets Division, National Bank of Abu Dhabi - 1st March 2012

"I would like to thank David for speaking at the event. His contribution very much helped to ensure a successful conference that has since been the focus of a great deal of positive feedback from the participants" - Venessa Heywood, Conference Director, IIR Abu Dhabi - 1st March 2012

"The conference in Rome was indeed a success and David's speech added great value to our plenary session" - Olivier Bedois, Director - Marketing & Communication, SDV - 13th February 2012

"Our event was a great success, we have received such positive feedback from our guests who attended. We were all very impressed with David, his speech was very entertaining, humorous and easy to listen to. He interacted very well with our guests and with our own Actavis team and he seemed very knowledgeable of our industry. It was great to see our guests so animated throughout David’s speech." - Debbie McDonald, Marketing Executive, Actavis Ireland, October 2011

"The entire audience was pleasantly shocked to see an economist could be so connected with reality and also were delighted that he delivered a clear message that we can control our destiny despite all that is going on around us especially sales leaders and business owners (who were the audience). The overall feedback was very positive.” - Charlie Mernagh, Managing Director, Ask Solutions, September 2011

"David's relaxed, yet confident style, coupled with the ability to debate with him and frankly discuss matters of huge importance, both to our advisers and their brokers, was really well received. We consider this small event for our key clients a great success." -
David Walls, Axa Financial, June 2011

"On behalf of the board and the members of the FPP I would like to thank you most sincerely for chairing the FPP Annual conference in the Westbury Hotel, Dublin on February 25th. YOur expert contribution on the day was much respected by both speakers and delegates to make the conference a great success." -
Lionel McCarthy, CEO, Forum on Public Procurement in Ireland

"The Event went really well last night, we were delighted with David; he was a delight to deal with and an excellent and very entertaining speaker. He related very well with the audience, he was enjoyable to listen to and very insightful" - Nuala Martyn, Financial Solution Skillnet

"Thanks for your support in securing David McWilliams for our conference. He was fantastic and has had superb feedback!" - Geraldine D’Arcy, Irish Primary Principals’ Network

"On behalf of the chairman and the national Council of ISME may I thank you very much for your excellent and valuable contribution to our national conference, it was very well received" - Mark Fielding, Chief Executive, ISME, The Independent Business Organisation.

"I am writing to thank you on my own behalf and on the behalf of Cork City Council and the University of Ulster for your participation in the recent conference of the Isles. We have received an amazing number of letters and emails congratulating the conference on the quality of the speakers and their presentations" - Stephen Kearney, Director Housing and Community Cork City Council

"We were most fortunate in having you as our guest speaker on the occasion of this celebration. It was a great success and we were thrilled with the feedback from our guests. All in attendance found you most entertaining and some people were talking about you for days afterwards…again David, thank you very much and continued success for the future." - Conor McCarthy and David Kiely, Directors Jennings O’Donovan & Partners Consulting Engineers

"Provocative, entertaining, stimulating------A man who dares to differ---That’s David!" - Frank Mc Donagh, Commercial Branch Manager, Bank of Ireland

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