Future Leaders Connect - the global network for emerging policy leaders ©

British Council 

Applications are now closed and will open again in 2020.

The place where Future Leaders Connect

Through Future Leaders Connect, we identify exceptional individuals (aged 18-35) from across the UK and around the world who could play a significant role in policy making and politics in the years ahead. If you believe you are an emerging leader with an understanding of policy making and the potential to be a senior leader then this could be the opportunity for you.

To apply you must:

  • Live in one of our participating countries - Canada, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Mexico, Morocco, Nigeria, Pakistan, Poland, Tunisia, UK and USA. Applications from Egypt are for public sector employees only and the USA applications are by invitation only.
  • Be aged 18-35 (on 6 May 2019).
  • Be able to speak and understand English (you do not need the official qualification, but you must be able to speak English at IELTS level 7 or equivalent. This means you would need to generally have an effective command of the language despite some inaccuracies, inappropriate usage and misunderstandings. You can use and understand fairly complex language, particularly in familiar situations).
  • Have availability to travel to the UK from 21 October to 1 November 2019. 
  • Have a passport valid for at least six months from October 2019 and be eligible to access a visa to come to the UK. 
  • You cannot be currently employed by, or an immediate family member of, the British Council or the Møller Centre.

More about the types of people we are looking for:

  • You should be able to explain how you want to make change in your country and how this links to your vision for global change.
  • You should have a good understanding of policy and are interested in learning more about policy making. 
  • You should be willing to engage in this long-term opportunity with the British Council to become a member of Future Leaders Connect and be committed to the network. 
  • You are likely to be in your early to mid-career and already have examples of when you have demonstrated leadership. 
  • We are looking for emerging leaders who are committed to support the development of their country through policy change, and so encourage those to apply who have good knowledge and strong networks in the country they are based in.
  • We are looking to find a diverse group of people with different experiences, ideas and backgrounds. The programme is fully accessible for those with disabilities. If you unable to complete the application online due to accessibility requirements please email us outlining your needs - futureleadersconnect@britishcouncil.org 

For the 2019 application you need to be available to travel to the UK, arriving on the 21 October 2019 and departing on the 1 November 2019 with a valid passport. If you believe there is any reason you may be denied a visa you may want to consider whether to submit an application, as the British Council is unable to facilitate or guarantee that you will receive a visa. Check if you need a visa

The costs of travel, accommodation and meals are covered by the British Council and the programme is fully accessible. We are looking for exceptional individuals with the ideas, energy and commitment to work collaboratively with all members of Future Leaders Connect and senior leaders. The programme aims to be representative of the countries in which it operates. We encourage applications from all sections of society. 


Former UN General Secretary Kofi Annan discusses global policy with Future Leaders Connect members ©

British Council

What does living in one of the eligible countries mean?

That you currently live in this country at the time of applying and you have a long term commitment to that country.  Your policy vision for change needs to match the country you are applying from. 


I am studying in a different country from where I usually live, can I still apply from the country where I usually live? Unfortunately you must be living in the country you are applying from to be eligible. This means your policy vision must match that country you are living in.

I am not a permanent resident of the country I wish to apply from, but I do have a long term commitment to living here, can I apply? Yes you can apply if you are not a permanent resident but consider it your long term home and that your policy vision is related to that country. 

Currently I am working abroad in one of the participating countries, can I apply from that country? Yes, but you must demonstrate a long term commitment to that country and explain your policy vision for that country in your application. 

I am in one of the participating countries for the short term, can I apply from here? Unfortunately you cannot apply unless you live in that country and have a long term commitment to it.  

What does policy mean?

The Future Leaders Connect definition of policy. 

  • Policy – a set of ideas, plan, course or principle of action which is officially agreed to by a body or an individual. 
  • Policy making – discussion, debate and influence that leads to the establishment of a policy.

When we talk about policy at Future Leaders Connect, we are talking about policy which would result in widespread impact through changing or maintaining law or governing practices. The policy making bodies we are discussing are governments or those seeking to influence government.