New director for Jubilee Centre

An international development worker who has spent a number of years working in Tajikistan - the poorest of the former Soviet republics - is to take up a new challenge as director of the Cambridge-based Jubilee Centre.

Dr John Hayward has 12 years experience in the charity sector and a history of campaigning on social and political issues. He takes on his new role at Jubilee House at a time when the Christian research centre is planning to expand its international network into such places as Singapore, Kenya, Holland and the USA.

His arrival also coincides with the centre's silver jubilee and Dr Hayward hopes to mark this important event by helping to communicate more widely the Bible's coherent vision for society - one that values and prioritises relationships and wellbeing, rather than just individuals and money.

"I feel extremely privileged to have been chosen to take forward the work of the centre," he said, "Over the 25 years, it has built up a strong reputation and its resources, such as the quarterly publication The Cambridge Papers, are used by Christian leaders, churches and theological colleges in over 70 countries.

"One of the plans is to make greater use of the internet as a more direct way of equipping Christians everywhere to shape their lives according to biblical principles."

While in Tajikistan, Dr Hayward established an adult education centre, principally teaching English as a foreign language, the most sought after skill in the country. Prior to his time overseas, he spent six years at Cambridge University studying genetics.

Over the years, the Jubilee Centre had conducted research into a wide range of contemporary social issues, including asylum and immigration, credit and debt, unemployment, criminal justice and care for the elderly.

Most recently, it has focused on the issue of climate change and sustainable living. Its current work is in the area of sexual ethics. Dr Hayward is taking over from Jason Fletcher, who has worked at the centre for six years. He is leaving to run a new independent school, founded in Cambridge in September.