International Collaboration Grants graphic with image of man installing picture on exhibition wall and woman stood behind

Interested in applying for an International Collaboration Grant?

Find out more about the application and assessment process below. 

We've created a feedback video full of top tips on putting together a strong application. It also looks at some of the common areas where applications could have improved in the last round.

What are the International Collaboration Grants?

We are delighted to launch the International Collaboration Grants, a £3.5m programme of grants now available to support UK and overseas organisations to collaborate internationally.

The programme is designed to support artists to make and develop creative artwork with their international peers, and to encourage new international partnerships and innovative ways of collaborating. Small grants of £5-20k and large grants of £20-75k are now available to UK and international organisations. 

Applications must demonstrate genuine international collaboration and an explicit benefit to individual artists and international partners, and projects should address significant contemporary themes, from climate change to global challenges.

Who can apply?

The grants are designed to support UK and international organisations to work on projects in partnership. The international organisations must be based in the countries listed below.

Each project should include at least one UK-based organisation and one organisation based in the countries listed below as part of the partnership.

The grant will be paid to the UK partner on condition that the grant is distributed between them and the country partner/s.

An organization can apply twice for two different projects but it is likely that only one can be successful. 

The same organization can be involved in two different applications as an applicant and as a partner respectively.

What type of organisation can apply?

The grants are open to arts and culture organisations, and higher education/research organisations with an arts and culture focus.

An ‘organisation’ is defined as a legally registered entity with a registered bank account, and can include collectives, consortia, community, charity, private and public.

Although applications must be completed through organisations, the grants are designed to benefit the artistic community; therefore projects that show clear benefits to artists and individual practitioners will be prioritised.

Grants will be awarded to organisations (including consortia, community-based and artist-led), and in particular we will be looking for those that identify specific individual artists for inclusion in the project. Projects can involve international artists based in any country on top of those in the UK and eligible countries, however the grant must be spent in eligible countries. 

We are keen to receive applications from UK organisations with whom we have not previously worked, especially those based outside London.

Eligible countries/territories

UK in partnership with:

Algeria, Argentina, Bangladesh, Brazil, China, Colombia, Egypt, France, Germany, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Kenya, Korea, Lebanon, Malaysia, Mexico, Morocco, Myanmar, Nepal, Nigeria, Norway, Occupied Palestinian Territory, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Saudi, Spain, South Africa, Sudan, Taiwan,Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, UAE, Ukraine, and Vietnam

Projects in bold are ODA (Official Development Assistance) countries/territories.

What is ODA (Official Development Assistance)?

ODA (Official Development Assistance) is a term coined by the Development Assistance Committee (DAC) of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) to measure aid.

Why isn’t my country/territory eligible?

The British Council focused on certain countries where we have the capacity to help facilitate this project and so this has limited the number of places where it runs. We hope to be able to offer the programme or similar work in other countries in future, and we recommend you keep an eye on our Arts Opportunities page for other opportunities that may come up.

What sort of projects will be considered for the grants?

The International Collaboration Grants are designed to help arts organisations develop and deliver creative projects in collaboration with international partners.

We are looking for new and innovative projects – this includes projects that demonstrate new forms or content; that work with a new partner, or in a new country; or that approach audiences in a new way.


Proposed projects could include the following art forms:

  • Film
  • Creative technology (incl games, immersive, mixed, augmented and virtual reality)
  • Literature
  • Visual Arts
  • Theatre and dance (including circus)
  • Architecture, design & fashion (including craft)
  • Music

We also welcome proposals for:

  • Cross-art form projects
  • Projects with themes relevant to the creative economy
  • Cross-disciplinary projects (eg art + science, art + technology)


The scope of a project might be simply to collaborate on a piece of art, a film, piece of writing or music etc., or could include any of the following:

  • Residencies
  • Exhibitions, festivals, showcases, screening programmes
  • Conferences, salons
  • Creative use of archives
  • Research & development of future project ideas

Although this is not a professional development focused fund, the outcome doesn’t strictly need to be a completed artistic outcome; elements of skills development can be part of a project with the primary outcomes supporting creative and artistic work.


Projects could be designed for face-to-face, digital or hybrid outcomes. In particular, we are looking for projects incorporating digital innovation, and we welcome proposals to convert a physical project to a virtual/digital output.


Projects can address any subject or theme – but we particularly invite collaborations that focus on gender, race, ethnicity, disability, inclusion, ageing and other areas of diversity.

Will you fund projects which support young people under 18’s?

While there is not a restriction on under 18s being involved in projects, the intent of the fund is to support professional artists’ practice.

Can I apply for a grant without a partner?

As the fund is designed to support collaboration, all applications must include at least one partner based in the countries/territories stipulated and at least one UK partner. We will not accept single-organisation applications.

Can I apply as an individual artist?

While the funds are designed to benefit the artistic community, applications can only be accepted from legally registered organisations and collectives and not individual artists. All UK partner organisations must have a registered bank account.

We will prioritise applications and projects that show a clear benefit to the artistic community in the country or countries in which they are working.

Will multilateral projects be considered?

We will accept applications for multilateral projects and/or projects with more than one partners in the same country, with the focus on the programme being delivered mutually, however the funding should be split between the UK and overseas countries/territories, with at least 50% of the funding benefiting non-UK partners.

An additional partner (on top of the minimum two) from a non-eligible country/territory can take part in the project but cannot receive grant funding.

When should the projects take place?

Successful projects may start as soon as contract is signed (or later). We aim to have all contracts signed by end of March 2022.

Grant projects should be completed by 31 March 2023. We may consider extensions, but this will be done on a case-by-case basis (e.g. in the event of a festival edition taking place after this date). You will be invited to submit a timeline as part of your application. 

Grantees will be required to submit project end reports on completion of the project.

I have previously received funding from the British Council. Can I still apply?

If you have previously received British Council funding for exactly the same activity as described in your application, you will not be able to apply for a new grant to repeat it. If you have previously received funding from the British Council for research or scoping-based activity to develop your project, you can apply for a grant to take the project forward.

If your application proposes the development or addition of new elements to a project previously funded by the British Council (including new country partnerships, or new ways of working), you can apply.

Can I apply for two different British Council grants from separate funds for the same project?

Yes, you can apply for two different British Council grants, but we will not fund the exact same project out of two British Council funds. If you apply for both we will involve the other fund in cross checking before awards are made. 

How much money is available?

  • The £3.5m programme is offering grants from £5k to £75k.
  • Of this, £3.075m is available for work in ODA countries.
  • £425,000 is available for work in non-ODA countries.
  • You can see the full list of ODA and non-ODA countries above, under 'Eligible countries/territories'.

How much can I apply for?

There are two levels of grants available:

Small grants: £5k-£20k
Large grants: £20-75k

In exceptional cases we may offer additional funding (up to a total grant of £100k) to large projects with multiple partners. Applicants who wish to be considered for this must evidence the scalability of their project in the application form.

The grant requested can be for covering a part or the full project costs. Match funding from partners and/or other external funding is welcome but not required.

Additional funds for access

If your organisation has accessibility requirements for the delivery of your proposed project, you will be able to request additional funds beyond the core grant in the budget section of the application form.

What costs can the grants cover?

The grants can cover project costs including:

  • New staff positions to deliver the project
  • Additional hours for existing staff to deliver the project
  • Filling a post left empty by moving an existing member of staff into a post created for the project
  • Training costs
  • Professional fees
  • Translation and interpretation fees
  • Materials
  • Activities relating to learning, advocacy and community engagement
  • Evaluation
  • Promotion
  • Equipment or overheads costs for your organisation, such as new online subscriptions, computers or additional rent (NB. up to 25% of the budget can be allocated for organisational overheads)
  • First-party insurance costs
  • Travel and accommodation costs

Artists should be paid fairly and this should be reflected in the budget in relation to any artist fees.

If you have a query about what can be covered by the grant, please contact us via

How is accessibility being considered?

All projects should include access facilitation for audiences as part of their core project budget.

Additional access costs

If your organisation has accessibility requirements for the delivery of your proposed project, you will be able to request additional funds beyond the core grant in the budget section of the application form.

How will the projects be decided? What criteria will applications be marked on?

Your project will be judged across the following three areas. They are clearly marked in the application form.

Activity and innovation: 40%

Is the project proposal of a high artistic/creative quality, and is it innovative in its approach?

  • Evidence of developed discussions and activity outline
  • Evidence of artistic quality and benefit to individual artists
  • Evidence of innovation (i.e. demonstrating what is new about the way in which you would like to work)

Partnership and positive contribution, legacy: 30%

Is the project proposal mutually and equally benefitting both UK and international applicants? Is the project proposal well-planned and resourced, and does it demonstrate shared use of the budget between the UK and international applicants?

  • Evidence of a sound partnership
  • Evidence of viability of project (timescale, budget) and ability of partners to deliver (track record, risk assessment)
  • Evidence that projects will make a positive contribution to the social and economic development of the ODA country involved (where applicable)
  • Legacy plans – evidence of how the partnership will be sustained and developed beyond the proposed project

Diversity, sustainability: 30%

Does the project proposal address equality, diversity, inclusion, or environmental sustainability?

  • Evidence of diversity (in project team, in subject, in target audiences)
  • Equality and Diversity assessment
  • Sustainability (in delivery, and in project themes)

How do I apply?

All applications much be sumitted via the online application form by 4 November 2021. 

Can I save my application in draft, or amend my application once I have submitted it?

Yes, you can save your applications midway through the process. You can also apply as a team and each access the application.

We recommend that you initally refer to the application guidance to preview the questions before using the online portal, and to keep a separate copy of your application in case you encounter any technical issues.

What is the deadline for applications?

Applications must be submitted via the online digital application portal in full by 4 November 2021 23:59GMT.

The online digital application portal to apply will go live on the International Collaboration Grants page on Friday 15 October 2021.

Who will assess applications, and when will applicants be notified?

Who assesses the applications?

Applications will be assessed by a team of British Council staff from across our global network together with a pool of external arts specialist assessors. All applications will be treated confidentially. All assessors will sign a non-disclosure agreement.

When can I expect to hear if I am successful?

We will assess applications and inform all applicants before 31 January 2022.


Can I get feedback if my application was unsuccessful?

Unfortunately, due to the volume of applications we receive, we are unable to provide feedback to all applicants.

We will provide feedback to any shortlisted candidates that did not go on to receive a grant.

We will also host a post-open call webinar to discuss the common pitfalls we saw in applications. This will be open to all unsuccessful applicants.

See also