Paul Fournel (born 20 May 1947 in Saint-Étienne) is a French writer, poet, publisher, and cultural ambassador. He was educated at the École normale supérieure of Saint-Cloud (1968–1972). Fournel wrote his master's thesis on Raymond Queneau and published the first book-length study of the Oulipo, Clefs pour la littérature potentielle ("Keys to potential literature"). He joined the Oulipo, first as "slave," then (in 1972) as full member, and he currently serves both as the Provisionally Definitive Secretary and the President of that group. He is also a regent of the College of 'Pataphysics.
Fournel has worked at various publishing houses, notably Hachette, Honoré Champion, Ramsay, and Seghers. From 1996 to 2000 he was director of the Alliance Française in San Francisco, and from 2000 to 2003 he was the French cultural attaché in Cairo. He is currently France's cultural attaché in London.