Dr Cohen is a graduate of Lincoln College, Oxford, where he read Oriental Studies. He was the recipient of a Fulbright Fellowship to Brandeis University, in Massachusetts, USA.
He later qualified in Medicine and practised as a General Practitioner, retiring in 2000. As well as being an Honorary Fellow of Harris Manchester College, he is an Honorary Fellow of Lincoln College and a member of the Chancellor’s Court of Benefactors of Oxford University.
Dr Cohen’s wife, Jillian Barker, is the Director of Learning and Participation at the Royal Opera House.