You are here

Our work in arts

Contact us

How we work

We promote Scottish cultural talent and assets as a distinct part of the UK’s cultural offering. Through this Scotland becomes more visible and better connected to the right people and places.

Established in Edinburgh in 1946, British Council Scotland was instrumental in the creation of the first Edinburgh International Festival in 1947. Since then we have continued to bring international academics, policymakers and artists to Scotland and take counterparts abroad.

The principle focus of our work lies in:

  • internationalising major Scottish events
  • helping to manage Scotland’s contribution at major international events
  • enabling more Scottish professionals to attend international festivals and events
  • ensuring that Scotland is represented internationally in major UK bilateral programmes 
  • negotiating cultural partnerships for Scotland
  • cultural diplomacy.

Most of our activity takes place overseas in collaboration with our colleagues and local partners (such as festival and artistic programmers, venues, producers and other arts organisations) and we tend to work with networks and agencies rather than individual artists. 

We design specific programmes appropriate to the regions in which we work. These are planned according to the British Council objectives, local aims, interests and needs.

We are not a funding organisation in the accepted traditional sense but work with partners to deliver programmes and use our grant to invest in strategic areas. Although we are approached with many exciting ideas for projects, we are only able to collaborate on a limited number of partnerships each year. 

For more information on our work in the arts please email us or have a look at our way of working document. You can also learn more about our global work in arts.

Our work in Scotland

The Edinburgh Festivals

Performers at Edinburgh Festival Fringe

Discover Edinburgh's twelve major festivals.