From 1970 to 2004 Roderic Lyne was a member of the British Diplomatic Service. He was British Ambassador to the Russian Federation from 2000 to 2004; UK Permanent Representative to the World Trade Organisation, the UN and other international organisations in Geneva from 1997 to 2000; and Private Secretary to the Prime Minister for foreign affairs, defence and Northern Ireland from 1993 to 1996. From 1990 to 1993 he was head of the Soviet and then Eastern Department of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, and from 1987 to 1990 Head of Chancery at the British Embassy in Moscow. In his earlier career he served in the Soviet Union, Senegal and at the UK Mission to the United Nations in New York, as well as in the Soviet and Rhodesian departments of the Foreign Office and as Assistant Private Secretary to the Foreign Secretary, Lord Carrington.
From 1986 to 1987 he was a Visiting Research Fellow at Chatham House.
From 2005-7 he was a member of the Task Force of the Trilateral Commission on Russia and a co-author, with Strobe Talbott and Koji Watanabe, of the report to the Commission 'Engaging with Russia: The Next Phase' (published in English and Japanese in 2006 and in Russian in 2007).
Roderic Lyne is currently a Senior Adviser to JPMorgan Chase Bank, and a non-executive director of Petropavlovsk plc. He is a member of the Board of the Russo-British Chamber of Commerce; the Board of Governors of Kingston University; and is a Governor of the Ditchley Foundation. Since 2009 Sir Roderic has been a Member of the Iraq Inquiry Committee.