Middle East and North Africa

The British Council has 70 years of experience in supporting sustainable change and improving people’s lives in the Middle East and North Africa.

This region has witnessed unprecedented change since the uprisings of 2011. While the process of rebuilding and consolidating political change post ‘Arab Awakening’ continues, many countries still face considerable transition challenges. Across the region key problems include inequitable growth, on-going fiscal vulnerability, political uncertainty and high unemployment, particularly among women and young people.

Decades of experience in this challenging and ever-changing region has led to powerful, long-term relationships on the ground in the public, private and voluntary sectors, valuable high-level networks, and a sensitive and comprehensive understanding of the region.

Our strengths include:

  • offices across 17 countries and territories in the region
  • experience of designing and managing a wide range of education reform projects
  • creating and implementing governance programmes
  • English language expertise, including teaching English, teacher training and exams
  • fund and scholarship programme management
  • our contribution to the development agenda in the region
  • our not-for-profit and politically independent status.

Quality education for all

We work with governments and other stakeholders to improve the availability and quality of primary, secondary and higher education. Through the Support to Improving the Quality of Education in Iraq project we are working to improve pedagogic skills, set up supported self-evaluation and development planning and develop leadership within schools.                                             

The Development Partnerships in Higher Education programme helped to strengthen capacity within the Iraqi higher education sector, by designing and facilitating knowledge sharing and professional development in teaching and research.

Sustainable development through collaboration

In Libya, through the Technical and Vocational Education and Employment  project we are supporting the development of skills that are required for economic and social regeneration. This includes facilitating dialogue between employers and policy makers and contributing to the development of an innovative national TVE strategy.

Through the Tajaawob programme in the Palestinian Territories we are working with civil society groups to improve their monitoring of public spending, liaising with independent media to better represent excluded groups and supporting young people to engage with the Palestinian Authorities.

Supporting change

In Oman, we are supporting capacity building for the legal sector through professional development. Alongside a bilateral visit programme, we provide tailored training and capacity building sessions that cover the international rule of law, human rights and international obligations.

Our Playing for Peace project aims to strengthen the civil society capacity of the Palestinian communities of Jordan, West Bank, Gaza and Israel and to promote peace building and conflict transformation by inspiring community dialogue.

Through the Young Arab Analysts Network International project we have supported the process of democrative transition by enabling young people in  Egypt, Tunisia, Jordan, Algeria, Morocco and Libya to influence public policy.

Our offices

We work across the region and have offices in Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Palestinian Territories, Morocco, Tunisia, Yemen, Algeria, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and UAE.