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The British Council creates international opportunities for the people of the UK and other countries, and builds trust between them worldwide. Our Organisation

The British Council creates international opportunities for the people of the UK and other countries, and builds trust between them worldwide. We call this work cultural relations. 

We work in over 100 countries, connecting millions of people with the United Kingdom through programmes and services in the English language, the Arts, Education and Society. We believe these are the most effective means of engaging with others, and we have been doing this work since 1934. 

Our work in English aims to bring high quality language materials to every learner and teacher who wants them. In developing and post-conflict countries we teach English and train teachers through radio, web and TV broadcasts. We offer over three million UK examinations worldwide, helping people gain access to trusted qualifications to support their career and study prospects.

Our work in Education and Society helps transform national education systems, builds more inclusive and open societies and increases young people’s opportunities. We encourage international students to come and study in the UK, and British students to experience life abroad. We bring schools around the world together so young people and teachers from different countries can share with and learn from each other.

Our work in the Arts involves the very best British and international artistic talent. We help increase audiences for international work in the UK and for UK work globally. We bring artists together and support the development of skills and policy in the arts and creative industries. Through this work we ensure that culture in its broadest sense plays a vital role in connecting with and understanding each other.

In these ways, the British Council builds links between UK people and institutions and those around the world, helping to create trust and lay foundations for prosperity and security around the world. 

Read more about our work in our Annual Reports.

In this section

Annual Report 2013 -14

Read our Annual Report 2013 -14

80 Years, 80 Moments

80 Moments That Shaped The World

From the fall of the Berlin Wall to Pablo Picasso to the instant noodle

Our blog - Voices

The space you work in directly affects your productivity and creativity. Photo of workspace by Nick Castonguay under Creative Commons licence.

Fresh perspectives on education and culture from around the world

Freedom of information

Corporate plan 2014 -16

Cultural relations insights

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Read our research, reports and opinions