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Gwyn Winfield

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Gwyn Winfield started off as a political journalist in 1997, working on a small magazine called Parliamentary Review. Over the next four years he worked himself into a position of Publisher on a wide variety of titles, including Planning Review, Health Review and the one that was most important to him, Defence Review.
Eventually he managed to delegate all writing on the other magazines to other staff, and from 2001 he has written on nothing other than defence and homeland security. As a defence journalist he got to cover stories in exotic places like Kosovo, Macedonia and Afghanistan, until his daughter came along and his wife put a stop to all his fun.

He started writing about chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear weapons (CBRN, or NBC back in those days) in 2001, as an academic oddity. Outside of the Tokyo sarin attacks, and other weird poisoning, there really wasn’t much call for information on CBRN, despite its exotic nature. All that changed after the Amerithrax attacks, and by simple journalistic curiosity Gwyn found himself in a position of a small amount of knowledge, while most other journalists had none.


He has taken that lucky break and run with it for the past 21 years, writing on little other than this topic, albeit one that spans North Korean nuclear weapons, Iraqi chemical ones, and a variety of pathogens that might wipe us out. A process involving longevity, and knowing the right questions to ask much smarter people, has seen him build a career as the world’s leading journalistic authority on CBRN defence. He has travelled across the Americas, Europe and Asia studying CBRN defence, what people have done right and wrong, and covered stories as diverse as anthrax contaminated heroin and sarin releases in Syria. In addition to this he frequently assesses future threats and whether current national systems are able to deal with them.
He has interviewed a legion of experts on the topic, from lieutenant generals through to paramedics. This has allowed him to capture a range of voices and experience, all delivered in an easy and approachable tone (he hopes). In addition to this he is able to view the subject graphically, and CBRNe World is famous for working with a variety of artists to bring to life what is often perceived as an esoteric and overly scientific subject. In addition to this he has written for defence and homeland security magazines and national newspapers, presented a BBC documentary on the state of UK readiness for a CBRN attack, co-authored a book on terrorism (Axis of Evil) and edited the comprehensive catalogue on CBRN defence devices. He is a frequent ‘talking head’ on international news media when one atrocity or another happens in the world.
Out of a desire to share his passion for some of the best stories in the CBRN business he has arranged a series of events on the subject for the past 17 years. This has seen him work with a variety of governmental organisations including the FBI, DoD, Singapore Civil Defence Force, Babylon University, Brazilian Military, Tokyo Metropolitan PD, Netherlands Military, CBR Defence Command in Korea and many more. For the past 15 years he has organized the largest CBRN responder conferences in the world, called CBRNe Convergence. He has produced and/or chaired CBRN numerous conferences from Buenos Aires to San Diego and spoken at a number of NATO CBRN conferences. The Convergence series of events look at the intersection between military and civilian forces and also divergent topics, such as novel narcotics (synthetic opioids) and toxic industrial chemicals. This has included sarin in Syria, novichoks in Salisbury and explosives in Paris.
As well as the magazine and conferences he has been involved in a wide variety of consultancy projects over the years. These have ranged from multi-year projects from the European Commission to provide better PPE, CBRN criminalistics and other services to EU countries through to commercial and governmental consultancy for a range of recognizable agencies. He has also managed a small company based in Hampshire, England, for the past sixteen years, which has been perhaps the most arduous task considering the global challenges to the economy that have happened during the period.
Despite, or perhaps because, of all this he remains cheerful and keen to learn things and be involved in new challenges: every day is a school day. He has a MA in English from Liverpool University, a BA in English from Loughborough University, played American Football for Great Britain Students and toured with a variety of brass bands. His daughter was joined by a son, and he loves them nearly equally.

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