The Chartered Institute of Internal Auditors has appointed a new Policy and External Relations Director, Alisdair McIntosh, who brings over 25 years' experience in policy-making and public affairs.

Alisdair will be responsible for leading the Institute's policy programme, engaging with key business leaders, policy-makers and regulators to promote and develop the role of internal audit in improving corporate governance, risk management and internal controls.

One of Alisdair's key priorities will be to build on the work the Institute has done to develop internal audit across the financial services sector, including monitoring the implementation of its 2013 Financial Services Code, which was promoted by the Institute, the FCA and the Bank of England.

Alisdair has held a series of strategic leadership roles in the UK and Scottish Governments, and at the European Commission in Brussels. Latterly he was Director of Business for New Europe, the leading pro-EU business organisation, and an advisor to TheCityUK, the representative body for UK financial and related professional services.

Dr Ian Peters, Chief Executive of the Institute said:

"We are delighted to welcome Alisdair to the Institute. His high-level policy-making experience and in-depth knowledge of the issues affecting businesses, as well as his extensive relationships across the public and private sectors, mean he is well-placed to build upon the progress made in putting internal audit at the centre of policy discussions on governance and risk issues.

"The perspective and input of internal audit is increasingly central to discussion on important business issues such as the impact of a poor corporate culture and transparent reporting standards.

"Two years since the Institute's Code was first introduced we have seen real change in how the financial services sector values internal audit. Increased emphasis has been placed on internal auditors' ability to act as a powerful early warning system for senior executives and support board directors in fulfilling their oversight role."

Alisdair McIntosh said:

"The global financial crisis has put the role of internal audit on the political agenda as never before. I look forward to working with the Institute and its stakeholders to support and develop the profession, to raise its profile and, critically, to ensure that political interest is translated into effective action."

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