Civil Service Fulbright group launched by alumnus

Fulbright alumni currently working for Her Majesty's Civil Service are invited to join the new Fulbright Civil Service Network.

Ben Rattenbury, British Fulbright alumnus (Columbia 2011-12) and Senior Policy Adviser for the Department of Energy and Climate Change, had the idea to connect the two affiliations after meeting fellow civil servant and Fulbright Commissioner Jeremy Clayton at an event last year.

After their conversation, Ben realised that there are relatively few links between Fulbright and the Civil Service, and he "saw the potential to develop something that could be useful to people in both institutions”.

He hopes the group will serve in the first instance as a connector, expanding alumni contacts within the Civil Service, one of the country’s biggest employers. There are already over a dozen alumni signed up to participate and he hopes word of mouth, along with promotional help from the US-UK Fulbright Commission, will help it grow from there.

Ben also sees it as a way to cross-promote the opportunities provided by both institutions: the employment opportunities at the Civil Service for Fulbright alumni and the opportunity to promote the benefits of the Fulbright programme to those at the Civil Service. 

The US-UK Fulbright Commission welcomes this initiative and Ben’s proactive approach to tapping the Fulbright network.

Penny Egan CBE, Fulbright's Executive Director, has been “keen for many years to see an effort of this sort setup as a platform for continued conversation amongst alumni and for broader promotion of the opportunities offered by the Fulbright programme”.

The group will have its first relaxed meet and greet in the next few months to discuss how it might plan its work. Input from the group will be key to deciding its future activities. Although the meeting will be held in London, where the majority of current members are, there will be a way to join the meeting remotely; the aim is for the network to be as inclusive as possible to all alumni, regardless of where they are based.

Any civil servants in the UK that are interested in learning more or getting involved are encouraged to get in touch with Ben at