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Ward, Barbara (Jackson)


British political economist, writer, lecturer; b. York, England, May 23, 1914; d. Lodsworth, England, May 31, 1981. The daughter of lawyer Walter Ward, a Quaker, and Teresa Mary Burge, a Roman Catholic, she attended Jesus and Mary Convent School, Felixstowe, Suffolk, the Lycée Molière and the Sorbonne in Paris, and returned after a year's study in Germany to Somerville College, Oxford, where she received a B.A. in 1935 with first class honors in "Modern Greats." She began her lecturing career at Cambridge University, England, in the University extension program (193639).

In 1939, Ward became a writer for the London Economist, and during and after World War II (194050), was foreign affairs editor, acting as contributing editor after 1950. Other wartime activities included work for the British Broadcasting Corporation's Brains Trust, a discussion program, and membership in the Sword of the Spirit, a Catholic social action movement. She was also a council member of the Royal Institute of International Affairs (194344), and governor of both Sadlers Wells Old Vic Trust (194453) and the BBC (194650).

In 1950 she married Australian-born Robert Gillman Allen Jackson (later Sir Robert Jackson), an international development expert who worked in Ghana and Asia and was Assistant Secretary General of the United Nations. They would later have a son, Robert. During the next two decades her husband's work took the couple to Australia, West Africa, and Asia, and Ward (the name she used professionally) continued her interest in international affairs, particularly in the developing third world nations. During this period, she lectured widely in Canada, England, and the United States. From 1959 to 1968, she spent her winters as a Carnegie Fellow at Harvard University where she lectured and held seminars on economic development.

During the 1960s she was to influence or be influenced by some of the most powerful personalities of the times. She became an advisor on international economics to United Nations Secretary General U Thant. She knew John F. Kennedy as both senator and president. Walt Rostow said that "of those outside government only Jean Monnet ranked in the same class as Barbara among those whose advice Kennedy was pleased to receive" (The Economist, June 6, 1981). According to Time (Sept. 3, 1965), Ward was an "influential if unofficial advisor" to the Lyndon Johnson administration. Two days before he left office in 1969, Johnson sent a note to Ward in which he said, "You have given me much more than your priceless friendship. You have brought wisdom and inspiration " (Economist, June 6, 1981). Ward was also a friend of Adlai Stevenson, Robert McNamara, and John Kenneth Galbraith.

In the same decade, Ward was impressed with the interest of Popes John XXIII and Paul VI in problems of world poverty and in 1967 she was named to the first Pontifical Commission for Studies of Justice and Peace, and took an active part in the World Congress of Roman Catholic Laity in October. Named Albert Schweitzer Professor of International Economic Development at Columbia University in December 1967, she held the professorship until her resignation in 1973. From 1973 to 1980, she was president of the International Institute for Environment and Development in London and continued to attend many conferences worldwide on those topics. In 1976, when Harold Wilson retired as prime minister, Ward, a lifelong Labour Party member, was on his list to be conferred a life peerage with the title Baroness Jackson of Lodsworth by Queen Elizabeth II.

Writings. Her writing has been variously described as "prolific," "simplistic," "persuasive although not original," and she has been called a generalist, an optimist, and, by Paul Lewis, "a synthesizer and propagandist." In Nationalism and Ideology (1966), she summarized what she considered to be "our needsfor political cooperation (rather than nationalism), for economic generosity, for faith in man," and those words were generally the topics for her facile pen beginning with her first book, The International ShareOut (1938) on colonial problems, and continuing with The West at Bay (1948), Policy for the West (1951), Faith and Freedom (1954), Interplay of East and West: Points of Conflict and Cooperation (1957), and Five Ideas that Changed the World (1959), with a foreword by Kwame Nkrumah, prime minister of Ghana. The five ideas she singled out were nationalism, industrialism, colonialism, communism, and internationalism. She continued her earlier theme that the industrialized Western countries must help the newly developed countries in The Rich Nations and the Poor Nations (1962), Spaceship Earth (1966), and The Lopsided World (1968).

Many of her books were the result of lectures given at McGill University in Montreal, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, Carleton University in Ottawa, Johns Hopkins University, and the University of Ghana. She won three Christopher Literary Awards and was awarded numerous honorary degrees. Other awards she received included the Order of the British Empire (1974) and the Jawarharlal Nehru Memorial Award for International Understanding (1980).

Bibliography: Contemporary Authors, New Revision Series, v. 6 (1982). Current Biography (1977). The New York Times Biographical Service (June 1981).

[m. h. mahoney]

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