Born in Vienna, George Weidenfeld left Austria for England in 1938. During World War II he worked with the BBC Overseas Service, mainly as News Commentator on European Affairs, and in 1945 founded the publishing firm, Weidenfeld & Nicolson, with Nigel Nicolson. In 1949 he became Political Advisor and Chef de Cabinet in Israel to Dr. Chaim Weizmann, and spent a year in this capacity before returning to Britain and publishing.
Lord Weidenfeld has published works of many important international historians and biographers and the memoirs of some of the most eminent politicians of his generation, including General de Gaulle, Dr. Konrad Adenauer, Harold Wilson, Golda Meir, President Johnson, Moshe Dayan, Dr. Henry Kissinger and Shimon Peres.
A British citizen since 1946, he has been twice honoured for his work in Britain, first through a knighthood and secondly through a peerage in 1976. From 1992 to 1994 he was Vice-Chairman of the University of Oxford Campaign and since 1994 has been Vice-President of the Oxford University Development Programme, and is especially involved with the Europaeum network of postgraduate Institutes of European Affairs. He is an Honorary Fellow of St. Peter's College, Oxford, an Honorary Fellow of St. Anne's College, Oxford, Honorary Dlitt, Exeter University. He was made an Honorary Senator of Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität, Bonn in 1996 and Magister, Diplomatic College Vienna in 1999 and has received a Honorary Degree of Doctor of Letters (DLitt) by the University of Exeter (June 2001). Furthermore, Lord Weidenfeld has received the Charlemagne Medal for European Media in Aachen (Germany, 2000) and in 2002 he was awarded the Austrian Cross of Merit for Arts and Science.
Among other appointments he is Chairman of Weidenfeld & Nicolson; Chairman, Board of Governors, Ben Gurion University of the Negev; Vice-Chairman of EU-Israel Forum; Governor of Tel-Aviv University; Governor of the Weizmann Institute; Board member of Herbert Quandt Foundation Bad Homburg and Consultant to the Bertelsmann Foundation. He is also a columnist for Die Welt and Welt am Sonntag