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About Us

Dr Robert Rowland Smith 


Robert Rowland Smith is a British author and philosopher. His books include Derrida and Autobiography (Cambridge University Press, 1995), Breakfast with Socrates: The philosophy of everyday life (Profile Books, 2009) and AutoBioPhilosophy: An intimate story of what it means to be human (4th Estate, 2018). He is a regular speaker at public- and private events, addressing a wide range of topics that includes philosophy, psychology, politics and art.


Robert was elected to a Fellowship by Examination (‘Prize Fellowship’) at All Souls College, Oxford and was awarded a Doctorate in Philosophy in 1991. While a Fellow of All Souls, he also held lectureships at both Mansfield College, Oxford, and Hertford College, Oxford, as a member of the English Faculty. Robert sits on the board of the Tavistock Institute of Medical Psychology and of the Institute of Art and Ideas.


He is a founding faculty member of The School of Life. Robert is the founder of Dynamics of Power - focusing on power dynamics in business, family, government, society and relationships.

Dr Mark Vernon 

Mark Vernon is known for contributing to and presenting programmes on BBC radio, writing for the UK national press notably the Guardian and the Church Times, as well as online publications like Aeon and podcasting, notably The Sheldrake-Vernon Dialogues with Rupert Sheldrake. He also publishes online talks such as How to See Spiritually and Philosophy as Awakening.

He is the author of several previous books, including The Meaning of Friendship (Palgrave Macmillan), Plato’s Podcasts (Oneworld), Carl Jung (Guardian Shorts), Dictionary of Religion and Beliefs (Ed – Chambers Harrap), Wellbeing (Routledge), and The Idler Guide to Ancient Philosophy (Idler Books). A Secret History of Christianity: Jesus, the Last Inkling and the Evolution of Consciousness (John Hunt Publishing.

His latest book is Spiritual Intelligence in Seven Steps which you can buy here,

He speaks at UK festivals such as Greenbelt, Port Eliot, No9, Wilderness and How The Light Gets In, and is involved with The Idler and The School of Life projects in London.


He works as a psychotherapist in private practice and at the Maudsley hospital in south London. His PhD is in ancient Greek philosophy, and he has other degrees in physics and theology.

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