Words by Ginni Arnold | Jan 18 2023

Bloomsbury today announced that Karl Burnett will be joining in the newly created role of Group Director of People and Engagement and as Executive Director on the Bloomsbury Executive Committee.

Karl will report into Chief Executive Nigel Newton.  The role combines all the disciplines of People, DE&I, Sustainability and Communications ensuring the company has a focused strategy both internally and externally. Burnett brings over 20 years of experience in people leadership from the media and TV industry.

Bloomsbury Publishing

Nigel Newton, Chief Executive

As the crisis of the pandemic unfolded, the fact that our own people are our greatest asset and that diversity, communication and sustainability are the most important things we do other than publish books became startlingly clear. I felt it was time to have a powerful single voice for those four areas in our Executive Committee and created this position. It has been hard to find the perfect person for it but we feel that in Karl, we have, and we greatly look forward to him joining and to his leadership in these areas.

Burnett joins from A&E Networks EMEA, where he is Senior Vice President of Human Resources EMEA.  During the past eight years, he has overseen huge cultural change for the company’s 300+ staff, articulating A+E Networks EMEA future direction and purpose. Through extensive consultation with employees, Burnett and his team forged the network’s vision and mission. The company won the media journal Broadcast’s award for Best Places to Work in TV in 2018 and was shortlisted in the Most Inclusive Company of the Year category in the IABM awards, hosted by the industry body in 2021. Most recently, in 2022, the company achieved the prestigious accolade of Great Place to Work certification.

Before joining by A+E Networks EMEA in 2015, he was HR Director of BBC News and Radio, heading a team of 60 professionals responsible for 8,000 journalists around the world.  Prior to that, Burnett held senior HR roles at Nickelodeon and Channel 4 Television.

Karl Burnett

I see many parallels between my existing role and my new role at Bloomsbury. For eight years at A&E Networks EMEA, we have been working hard to enhance the culture, which in-turn enabled us to improve employee engagement, achieve creative success, meet our commercial goals and become more successful. What is exciting about my role at Bloomsbury, is that it is newly created and has incredible breadth. It combines all the most important elements of culture, reputation and engagement and the opportunity to really build and enhance an already globally recognised, hugely successful, creative UK company.

Media enquiries: to Ginni Arnold, Head of Corporate Communications at Bloomsbury on [email protected] or 07968730247.

About Bloomsbury

Bloomsbury is a leading independent publishing house, established in 1986, with authors who have won the Nobel, Pulitzer and Booker Prizes, and is the originating publisher and custodian of the Harry Potter series. Bloomsbury has offices in London, New York, New Delhi, Oxford and Sydney. 

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