He graduated from Oriel College, Oxford, and after attended the University of Chicago in 1938 as a Commonwealth Fellow.
During the World World War II he worked doing public relations for Britain in the United States. In the early 1950s he was a foreign affairs correspondent for The Observer. He was press secretary to Anthony Eden during the Suez Crisis, but resigned shortly afterwards.
The first director of the Overseas Development Institute from 1960 to 1968, he then joined the World Bank.
From 1974 to 1980 he was Vice President in Charge of External Affairs of that body.