The British Council delivers projects that contribute to the UK's international development goals. Of the £168 million grant-in-aid funding to the British Council in 2017/18, £136 million is classed as Official Development Assistance.

Therefore, 81 per cent of our grant from the government contributes to the target of spending 0.7 per cent of UK gross national income on Official Development Assistance.

What is Official Development Assistance?

Official Development Assistance is UK taxpayers' money that supports aid and development in low- to middle-income countries. We deliver programmes that promote economic development and welfare in these countries which contribute to building friendly knowledge and understanding with the UK.

What is the British Council’s role?  

We work with UK and local partners to deliver Official Development Assistance programmes in developing and emerging economies and in fragile states. 

This includes working to enrich the quality of education through:

  • support to system reform
  • training teachers of English
  • developing international school partnerships and international higher education.

We promote economic growth by supporting social enterprise and the creative economy and we help build stronger, safer societies through our programmes in the rule of law, governance, civil society and the arts.

Official Development Assistance financial data

With the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), we are signed up to an international agreement to report aid expenditure according to the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI). You can find our published data on the Foreign and Commonwealth Office website.