Who is FOI Man?

My name is Paul Gibbons. I am a consultant and trainer in information rights and information management. I have been working in the field of information management for 20 years. For the last 10 of that, I have been responsible for compliance with information rights legislation, including the Freedom of Information Act and Data Protection Act, in a number of public authorities.

Paul Gibbons, FOI Man

Paul Gibbons, FOIMan

In 2010 I started the FOIMan blog – aiming to write about the Freedom of Information Act from a unique perspective – that of an FOI Officer. That led to a number of opportunities, and eventually to my new career as a freelance consultant.

I began my career as a records manager in the pharmaceutical industry after qualifying as a professional archivist and records manager. Since then, I have worked as a records manager in a government agency, a local authority and as Parliamentary Records Manager in the Houses of Parliament. In 2003 I became Freedom of Information and Records Manager for the Greater London Authority, tasked with preparing the Mayor of London’s headquarters for FOI coming into force. I’ve also worked briefly in the NHS, as Information Governance Manager for an NHS Trust. My last job before going freelance was in the higher education sector, as Information Compliance Manager for SOAS, University of London.

I have experience and expertise in information law (freedom of information, data protection, copyright, etc) and archives and records management, with professional qualifications in both areas (MSc Econ and LLM). As well as being a regular speaker at events, I contribute articles to a number of periodicals. Please read my CV if you want to know more about my career to date. If you’re interested in using me as a records management consultant, I’ve developed a CV specifically covering my experience in records management.


As well as regularly writing here on the FOIMan website, and guest posts on other blogs, I have contributed to a number of publications.

2014 articles in PDP’s Freedom of Information Journal:

How important is good records management to FOIA compliance?

Section 36 and the ‘qualified person’ — who is it and why does it matter?

Leadership and FOI

Codes of Practice – more guidelines than rules?

Ten years of FOI — a personal account

30 January 2014 Times Higher Education, An FOI Officer’s Lot: No Simple Questions or Easy Answers

September 2013 Privacy Laws and Business UK Report, Reuse of datasets poses potentially onerous obligations Reuse of datasets poses potentially onerous obligations

January – December 2013 in PDP’s Freedom of Information Journal, Practically Speaking series:

FOI, practically speaking Part 1 – deadlines

FOI practically speaking Part 2 – game, dataset and match

FOI, practically speaking Part 3 – getting vexed

FOI, practically speaking Part 4 – take it to the (appropriate) limit

FOI, practically speaking Part 5 – holding your own

FOI, practically speaking Part 6 – looking for approval

September/October 2012 In PDP’s Freedom of Information Journal, Vol 9 Issue 1 A shot across the bow?

Autumn 2003 In the Journal of the Society of Archivists, vol 24, issue 2, with Caroline Shenton (aka @dustshoveller on Twitter) Implementing a records management strategy for the UK Parliament: the experience of using Keyword AAA

1999 In the Records Management Journal, Vol 9, Issue 1, Casting the ‘Net: the Records Management Intranet Pages

Contact me

You can call me on 07799 654509. Or paul(Replace this parenthesis with the @ sign)foiman.com?Subject=training.