Our work

Our work in arts and culture is key to supporting our vision of a more peaceful and prosperous world.

We find new ways of connecting with and understanding each other through arts and culture, building creative and collaborative global communities that inspire innovation, inclusion and enterprise.

Arts, cultural and global relations

  • Connecting and collaborating with peers around the world to share experience, knowledge, learning and inspiration helps to build stronger and better-connected global arts and cultural sectors.​
  • It strengthens perceptions of modern, vibrant and creative countries – particularly amongst young people, encouraging more trade, investment and tourism.
  • It also helps to bring together divided communities and provides creative ways of responding to global challenges by protecting heritage, human rights and a sustainable environment.​​

The British Council builds connections between the UK and global creative sectors, supporting the brokering of new partnerships, advocating for arts and culture on the world stage and facilitating dialogue around the key global issues we are all facing.

How we can support you 

We support the international ambitions of the UK and global arts and creative sectors, helping artists and cultural professionals to achieve their ambitions and realise their potential.

Through our extensive cultural networks in the UK and internationally we:

Fund international opportunities for cultural exchange

We provide funded grants for artistic collaboration and exchange, the protection of cultural heritage and to respond to the key challenges of our time.

Find out about our current and upcoming international opportunities for artists, creatives, professionals and organisations on our Opportunities page.

Share knowledge and insight

Our research and thought-leadership programmes support policy change by demonstrating the impact that culture and creativity has at an individual and economic level and advocating for the role of arts in building sustainable communities.

Visits and delegations bring policymakers, cultural entrepreneurs, artists and cultural organisations together to share, exchange and learn from each other.

Read our latest research and global insights publications.

Bring art and audiences together

Working across artistic disciplines and sectors, we celebrate innovative and exciting ideas, sharing creativity with audiences worldwide through exhibitions, high-profile events, festivals and seasons, and performances that generate rich conversations between people across borders. 

Visit our YouTube channel to browse a collection of our latest commissions and digital content.

How we work

Art form directors

We have teams of art form specialists in the UK working on Architecture, Design and Fashion; Visual Arts; Theatre and Dance; Film; Music and Literature.

In addition, we have Heads of Arts in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, whose in-depth knowledge and networks help us to broker and support the right connections and ensure our work reflects the diversity and priorities of the devolved nations of the UK. 

Architecture, Design and Fashion 
Sevra Davis

Culture in Action
Stephen Stenning

Briony Hanson

Sinead Russell and Rachel Stevens

Joel Mills

Theatre and Dance 
Neil Webb

Visual Arts 
Emma Dexter and Miranda Stacey

Creative Economy
Rehana Mughal

Culture Responds
Pablo Rosselló

Regional Arts directors

Our Arts teams overseas are there to broker relationships with artists and institutions and build connections with the nations of the UK.  

Maria Garcia Holley
(Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Cuba, Jamaica, Mexico, Trinidad & Tobago, United States of America, Venezuela)

East Asia 
Manami Yuasa
(Australia, Burma, China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, Philipines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam)

European Union 
Jane Costello
(Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Irish Republic, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland)

Middle East and North Africa 
Amany Abouzeid
(Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Oman, Palestinian Territories, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, Yemen)

South Asia
Jill Richens
(Afghanistan, Bangladesh, India, Iran, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka)

Sub Saharan Africa
Farai Ncube
(Botswana, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Sudan, South Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe)

Wider Europe 
Claire De Braekeleer
(Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Georgia, Israel, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Russia, Serbia, Turkey, Ukraine, Uzbekistan)