Vincent Cable with his wife Rachel Smith

Married to Rachel Smith since 2004. His late wife Olympia died in 2001 and their three children are Paul (married to Agnesa Totova), Aida (married to Stephen Kenny) and Hugo (married to Laura Williamson). Vince has three grandchildren: Ayrton, son of Paul and Agnesa; Charlie, son of Aida and Stephen; and Theo, son of Hugo and Laura.

Vince read Natural Science and Economics at Cambridge University followed by a PhD at Glasgow University. He has an honorary doctorate at Kingston University.

From 1966-68 he was a Treasury Finance Officer for the Kenya Government (ODI Fellow). After lecturing economics at Glasgow he worked for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office as 1st secretary in the Diplomatic Service. He was then Deputy Director of the Overseas Development Institute including a period as Special Advisor to.the Secretary of State, John Smith. Fro 1983 to 1990 he was Special Advisor on Economic Affairs to the Commonwealth Secretary-General, Sir Sonny Ramphal.

In 1990 he joined the Shell scenario planning team and became Shell’s Chief Economist. He spent a period as Head of the Economics Programme at Chatham House.

Vince served as a Labour councillor in Glasgow before joining the SDP-Liberal Alliance and the Liberal Democrats. He was elected to parliament in Twickenham in 1997 30 years after he first contested a parliamentary seat and at the fifth attempt.

Universities and Further Education

Vince is currently Professor in Practice at the London School of Economics in the School of Public Policy

He is also a visiting professor at Nottingham University. He worked with the university on a collaborative project with Future learn to develop a MOOC(on line course)

He is visiting professor at St Mary’s University, Twickenham, and Honorary Fellow at Fitzwilliam College Cambridge and of the City Lit in London


Vince is a frequent speaker at business conferences with several Directorships.

He is a Director and Chair of the Advisory Board of Element 2 the hydrogen infrastructure company. Element 2 is organising a network of transport and refuelling hubs for HGV’s to help the transport sector transition to a net zero future using ‘green’ hydrogen.


Vince’s recent books include

  1. Partnership and Politics in a Divided Decade (The Real Press, 2022)
  2. How to be a Politician (Ebury/Penguin, 2022)
  3. The Chinese Conundrum (Alma Press, 2021)
  4. Money and Power (Atlantic, 2021)
  5. Open Arms (Corvus, 2016) A political thriller
  6. After the Storm (Atlantic, 2015)
  7. The Storm (Atlantic, 2010) about the financial crisis
  8. Free Radical (Atlantic, 2009) a biography


Vince is an active supporter of several national and local charities acting, for example, as patron or president continuing work begun as MP.

These include Speakers for Schools, talking to school children about careers and political life; the Mulberry Centre which provides emotional and practical support to cancer sufferers; Shooting Star, a children’s hospice in Hampton; Crossroads Care helping carers in the Richmond borough supporting carers across the age range; Off the Record, a Richmond charity advising young people with mental health problems; Together at One which provides a lunch club for adults with mental health issues; and OKMT which provides music therapy for children with learning difficulties. Vince also supports Jeevika (village development in India based on Schumacher principles) and Help a Poor Child, a Goan charity building schools in Africa and India.


“Sir Vince” by Simon Broom. Among the several portraits of Vince is this recent one by Twickenham based artist Simon Broom.


Vince has been an enthusiastic Ballroom and Latin dancer for 30 years. His teacher is Cheyenne Russell with her dance partner, Nick Kelly.