The British Council is a Non-Departmental Public Body of the United Kingdom Government which specialises in educational and development opportunities. Hong Kong ( officially the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, is a territory located on China 's south coast on the Pearl River Delta, and borders In the United Kingdom, a Non-Departmental Public Body (NDPB is a classification applied by the Cabinet Office, Treasury and Scottish Government Her Majesty's Government, or when the monarch is male His Majesty's Government, is the title used by the Government of the United Kingdom, based at It is a non-departmental public body, a public corporation incorporated by royal charter, and is registered as a charity in England. In the United Kingdom, a Non-Departmental Public Body (NDPB is a classification applied by the Cabinet Office, Treasury and Scottish Government Founded in 1934, one of its patrons is Queen Elizabeth II and its Chair is Lord Kinnock, the former leader of the UK Labour Party. For the ship see RMS Queen Elizabeth 2 Elizabeth II (Elizabeth Alexandra Mary Context States headed by Elizabeth II Neil Gordon Kinnock Baron Kinnock PC (born 28 March 1942 is a British Politician. The Labour Party is a Political party in the United Kingdom. Founded at the start of the 20th century it has been since the 1920s the principal party of the Its 'sponsoring department' is the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, although it has day-to-day operational independence. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office, commonly called the Foreign Office or the FCO, is the British government department responsible for promoting Martin Davidson is its Chief Executive, appointed in April 2007.
The British Council's remit is "to build mutually beneficial cultural and educational relationships between the United Kingdom and other countries, and increase appreciation of the United Kingdom’s creative ideas and achievements. " Its overseas network extends to 233 locations in 107 countries and territories. It has UK branch offices in London, Manchester, Edinburgh, Belfast, Cardiff and Cambridge and a headquarters in Spring Gardens, off Whitehall in central London. London ( ˈlʌndən is the capital and largest urban area in the United Kingdom. Edinburgh ( ˈɛdɪnb(ərə Dùn Èideann) is the Capital of Scotland and is its second largest city after Glasgow. Belfast ( is the capital city of Northern Ireland and the seat of government in Northern Ireland. Cardiff ( 'kɑːdɪf) is the Capital and the largest city and county in Wales. The city of Cambridge (ˈkeɪmbrɪdʒ is a university town and the administrative centre of the county of Cambridgeshire, England Whitehall is a road in Westminster in London, England. It is the main artery running north from Parliament Square, towards traditional
Of its total income of £551m in 2006/07, the British Council received £195m of grants from the British government. The rest was earned through charging for teaching English to individuals and organisations, examinations and commercial consultancy — often acting as a managing agent for UK Government departments, which it lobbies assiduously for business. Its main 'areas of activity', at least as reflected by its website, are 'Learning/Teaching, the Arts, Science and Society'.
While supporting curriculum development with teaching materials, the British Council also seeks to strengthen perceptions of the UK by introducing millions of people to British ideas and the English language. The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom, the UK or Britain,is a Sovereign state located The culture of the United Kingdom &mdash British culture &mdashrefers to the patterns of human activity and Symbolism associated with the British people and English is a West Germanic language originating in England and is the First language for most people in the United Kingdom, the United States There are 70 British Council Teaching Centres in 53 countries. It taught 1,189,000 class hours to 300,000 learners in 2006/07. 
In examination centres around the world, the British Council administers 1. 5 million UK examinations to over one million candidates each year and this is set to grow. The Council is making it easier to register and pay for these examinations online. It is also working with the UK's award bodies to extend the range of professional qualifications available overseas to establish the UK as the international benchmark in areas such as accounting. Accountancy or accounting is the measurement statement or provision of assurance about financial information primarily used by Lenders managers,
In schools around the UK, the British Council is working with the Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCSF) and the devolved administrations to help three million children gain an International School Award, which increases their understanding and appreciation of other cultures. The Department for Children Schools and Families ( DCSF) is a British government department created on 28 June 2007 following the disbanding of the There are now 2,700 UK schools working towards an award. In the Middle East, the British Council has launched a major school links programme bringing children in the UK together with those in the region in order to break down negative perceptions and foster inter-cultural dialogue. The Middle East is a Subcontinent with no clear boundaries often used as a synonym to Near East, in opposition to Far East. To date, 153 schools in the Middle East are involved in 53 collaborative projects.
On playing fields in 40 countries young people have learned new leadership and team-building skills by being involved in Dreams+Teams sports festivals. A playing field is a field used for playing sports or games They are generally outdoors but many large structures exist to enclose playing fields from bad weather The programme has trained 5,500 young leaders and has reached 280,000 people in their schools and communities. The British Council is expanding its activities to help more young people prepare for global citizenship.
English for peace is an important and growing element of British Council English language work in Africa and other parts of the world. It works with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the Ministry of Defence to improve the English language skills of military personnel assigned to international peacekeeping duties through the Peacekeeping English Project (PEP). The Ministry of Defence ( MoD) is the United Kingdom government department responsible for implementation of government defence policy and is the headquarters English is a West Germanic language originating in England and is the First language for most people in the United Kingdom, the United States Peacekeeping, as defined by the United Nations, is "a way to help countries torn by conflict create conditions for sustainable peace PEP is helping prepare approximately 50,000 military and police service personnel in 28 countries worldwide for peacekeeping mission duties. The Peacekeeping English Project is managed by the British Council and funded by the UK government global conflict prevention fund.
In many countries, including the UK, the British Council runs cafés scientifiques, informal events to engage people with creative ideas about science. Café Scientifique is a Grassroots public science initiative currently running in 42 cities across the United Kingdom and cities in other countries In Science, the term natural science refers to a naturalistic approach to the study of the Universe, which is understood as obeying rules or law of They take place in cafes, bars and bookshops and begin with a short talk from a UK scientist or science writer. Events so far have brought together audiences from as far away as India and Malaysia to discuss the social and ethical aspects of issues from Darwin to DNA, from global warming to artificial intelligence. India, officially the Republic of India (भारत गणराज्य inc-Latn Bhārat Gaṇarājya; see also other Indian languages) is a country For the biogeographical region see Malesia Malaysia (məˈleɪʒə or /məˈleɪziə/ is a country that consists of thirteen states and Charles Robert Darwin (February 12 1809 &ndash April 19 1882 was an English naturalist, who realised and demonstrated that all Species of life Deoxyribonucleic acid ( DNA) is a Nucleic acid that contains the genetic instructions used in the development and functioning of all known Global warming is the increase in the average measured temperature of the
ZeroCarbonCity is the British Council’s global campaign to raise awareness about climate change and the energy challenges facing the world’s cities. Climate change is any long-term significant change in the “average weather” that a given region experiences It chose climate change as the major theme for its science work to underline the leadership being shown by the UK in tackling this major issue, the Prime Minister’s commitment to use the G8 and EU presidencies to renew efforts to confront the global challenges. Presidency of the Council of the European Union is the responsibility for the functioning of the Council of the European Union which is rotated between European Union The programme included a touring exhibition, an online global debate and series of seminars and conferences. 62 countries have participated in ZeroCarbonCity and 2. 5 million people have been reached directly by the campaign.
The British Council-supported production of Love's Labour's Lost in 2005 was the first performance of a Shakespeare play in Afghanistan in over 17 years. Love's Labour's Lost is one of William Shakespeare 's early comedies believed to have been written in the mid-1590s and first published in 1598 William Shakespeare ( baptised Afghanistan /æfˈgænɪstæn/ officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan ( Pashto: د افغانستان اسلامي جمهوریت, The play was performed in the Afghan language of Dari and the capacity audience responded enthusiastically to the eternal and universal themes of Shakespeare’s play and to the local references and music.
The British Council has pioneered work on promoting the UK experience with the creative industries abroad, including running a series of awards for young creative entrepreneurs worldwide such as the International Young Publisher of the Year and International Young Music Entrepreneur of the Year awards. There are many different definitions aimed at describing one of the newest media terms creative industries sometimes referred to as creative economy The International Young Publisher of the Year is a British Council award programme which has been developed with the support of the London Book Fair. The International Young Music Entrepreneur of the Year award is a British Council and London Calling award program for young (aged 25 to 35 entrepreneurs 
In 2007,The British Council China Region launched a new community website for English learners and teachers across mainland China and Hong Kong. China ( Wade-Giles ( Mandarin) Chung¹kuo² is a cultural region, an ancient Civilization, and depending on perspective a National Hong Kong ( officially the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, is a territory located on China 's south coast on the Pearl River Delta, and borders The site has already over 30,000 members. English Online has social networking functionality as well as a range of podcasts for English learners - 
The British Council has entered Second Life Teen Grid to create an educational island for learners of English as of 2007. A podcast is a series of audio or Video digital-media files which is distributed over the Internet by syndicated Download Second Life ( abbreviated as SL) and its sister site Teen Second Life are Internet-based 3D Virtual 
In recent years the Council has experienced difficulties operating in Russia, resulting from the sometimes tense Anglo-Russian relationship. Russia (Россия Rossiya) or the Russian Federation ( Rossiyskaya Federatsiya) is a transcontinental Country extending It operates under a 1994 intergovernmental agreement on cooperation in the fields of education, science and culture. The British Government has been seeking for some years to establish a new Cultural Centres Agreement (CCA) which would formalize the British Council's status in Russia . The British Council is now registered for tax in Russia and pays tax on its "fee-earning work". The Russian Government has also challenged their claim to have been exempt in the past from paying local taxation on their commercial language teaching courses and also over The British Council's support for Russian NGOs that are perceived as political.
Also regarding Russia, in late 2007 the British Council announced that it is to cease carrying out all ESOL and other English Language examinations in Russia with effect from 1st January 2008. It cites "circumstances beyond our control" as being the cause and it appears that some examinations that had already been booked have been cancelled.  In addition, the British Council has stated that all offices in Russia, with the exception of Moscow, St Petersburg and Ekaterinburg will close before the end of 2007. Saint Petersburg ( tr: Sankt-Peterburg,) is a city and a federal subject of Russia located on the Neva River Yekaterinburg (Екатеринбу́рг also romanized Ekaterinburg, formerly Sverdlovsk) is a major city in the central part of Russia Subsequent confirmation of closures is reported here .
A further development occurred on 12 December 2007, when it was reported that the British Council had been ordered by the Russian Foreign Ministry to close its two remaining offices outside of Moscow before the beginning of January 2008. The Ministry maintained that the British Council was "operating illegally" within Russia and that "the Council had violated tax regulations, among other laws".  The Russian position was summarised in an article published on the Moscow News website.  British officials said that the Russian actions against the Council are connected to the dispute over Alexander Litvinenko poisoning 
After the Council's offices in St Petersburg and Ekaterinburg reopened in mid-January after the New Year break, the Russian authorities accused Britain of intentional provocation, because this action was illegal. Alexander Litvinenko was a former officer of Russian Federal Security Service, who escaped prosecution in Russia and received a Political asylum in However, British Ambassador Sir Tony Brenton said he had informed Vladimir Titov, the deputy foreign minister, that the offices would remain open as "the British Council is working entirely legally, that it will continue therefore to work, that any Russian action against it would be a breach of international law". Sir Tony Brenton KCMG full name Anthony Russell Brenton, born 1 January 1950 is a career diplomat Vladimir Georgiyevich Titov (Владимир Георгиевич Титов Colonel Russian Air Force, Ret  On 15 January 2008, the head of the St Petersburg office Stephen Kinnock, son of Neil Kinnock, was detained for alleged traffic offences and drunken driving; but declined to take an alcohol-level breath test, claiming diplomatic status, which was confirmed as valid when the British Consul-General arrived at the scene about one hour later. Stephen Kinnock (born 1970 is the assistant director until September 2008 of the British Council in Sierra Leone. Neil Gordon Kinnock Baron Kinnock PC (born 28 March 1942 is a British Politician. He was then released.  The following day, FSB officials interviewed British Council staff at both St Petersburg and Ekaterinburg, apparently informing them that they were working for an illegal organization. This resulted in the closure of both offices, owing to lack of staff, and they remained shut on 17 January 2008.  While the British saw little possibility of reopening the offices given the problems with their staff, Yury Fedotov, Russia's ambassador to London, told journalists that a solution to the dispute could be reached if Britain showed more respect for Moscow's position: "A resolution is possible, but we need to gain more respect and avoid further public discussions which under the current circumstances are unhelpful," he explained. Yuri Viktorovich Fedotov (Ю́рий Ви́кторович Федо́тов born 1950 is a high level diplomat of the Russian Federation. 
In March 2007, the British Council announced its 'intention to increase its investment in the Middle East, North Africa and Central and Southern Asia'. The Middle East is a Subcontinent with no clear boundaries often used as a synonym to Near East, in opposition to Far East. North Africa or Northern Africa is the Northernmost Region of the African Continent, separated by the Sahara from Sub-Saharan This will largely be funded by cuts in other services, libraries and office closures across Europe. In June 2007, MPs were told of further closures in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem (where there had been a British Council Library since 1946). Tel Aviv-Yafo (תֵּל ־אָבִיב-יָפוֹ تل أبيب Tal ʾAbīb) (usually Tel Aviv) is the second-largest city in Israel Jerusalem (יְרוּשָׁלַיִם, he-Latn Yerushaláyim; Arabic: ar القُدس, ar-Latn al-Quds) is the The British Council libraries in Athens and in Belgrade are also to close. Similarly in India, the British Council Libraries at Bhopal and Trivandrum are facing closure by March, this year. Bhopāl ( Hindi: भोपाल bʰoːpɑːl, Marathi -भोपाळ is a city in central India. Thiruvananthapuram ( Malayalam: തിരുവനന്തപുരം Tiruvanantapuraṁ) also known as Trivandrum, is the capital of the  as part of the Council's policy to
‘reduce its physical presence’ in the country and to divert funds to mega projects in the fields of culture, education, science and research.
See: http://www.saveourbritishlibrary.org/ for scenes in Trivandrum on the day The British Council closed down the library there.
British Council libraries and offices have also been closed in a number of other countries judged by the British Council to be of little strategic or commercial importance as it refocused its activities on China and The Gulf where it can get a 'bigger bang for the buck'. China ( Wade-Giles ( Mandarin) Chung¹kuo² is a cultural region, an ancient Civilization, and depending on perspective a National The Persian Gulf, in the Southwest Asian region is an extension of the Council offices were closed in Lesotho, Swaziland, Ecuador and provincial Länder in Germany in 2000–2001 — as well as Belarus — prompting Parliamentary criticism. Lesotho (lɪˈsuːtuː) officially the Kingdom of Lesotho, is a Landlocked country and Enclave — entirely surrounded by the Republic of South The Kingdom of Swaziland is a country located in Southern Africa centred at approximately 26o49'S 31o38'E For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Ecuador topics. Germany (Deutschland is a Federal Republic consisting of sixteen States, known in German as Länder (singular Germany, officially the Federal Republic of Germany ( ˈbʊndəsʁepuˌbliːk ˈdɔʏtʃlant is a Country in Central Europe. Belarus ( Belarusian Беларусь / Biełaruś is a Landlocked country in Eastern Europe, bordered by Russia to the north and east Subsequent promises by British Council Chair Neil Kinnock to a conference in Edinburgh  that the Belarus closure would hopefully prove to be just a "temporary" withdrawal proved illusory. Neil Gordon Kinnock Baron Kinnock PC (born 28 March 1942 is a British Politician. The British Council office in Peru also closed in September 2006 as part of a rethink of its strategy in Latin America . Peru (Perú Piruw Piruw officially the Republic of Peru ( reˈpuβlika del peˈɾu is a country in western South America.
Charles Arnold-Baker, author of the Companion to British History said of the British Council's shift in priorities: 'This whole policy is misconstrued from top to bottom. Charles Arnold-Baker, born Wolfgang Charles Werner Von Blumenthal ( Berlin, 25 June 1918) is an English Barrister ( The Companion to British History is a single-volume encyclopaedic reference work "bigger than a foundation stone longer than the Bible" ( Daily Telegraph) written by We are going somewhere where we can't succeed and neglecting our friends in Europe who wish us well. The only people who are going to read our books in Beirut or Baghdad are converts already.
The article also points out that the Institut Français and the Goethe-Institut, unlike the British Council, are both expanding and replenishing libraries Europe-wide. The Alliance française ( AF) is an organisation whose mission is to promote French language and The Goethe-Institut ( Goethe Institute in English is a German cultural institution operational worldwide promoting the study of the German language France opened its new library in Tel Aviv in 2007 — just a few months after British Council closed there and shut down the British Council library in West Jerusalem . In Gaza, the Institut Francais supports the Gaza municipal library in partnership with the local authority and a municipal twinning link between Gaza City and the French port of Dunkerque . Gaza (غزة, עַזָּה ʕazzā is the largest city in the Gaza Strip and the Palestinian territories. Dunkirk ( French: Dunkerque, dœ̃kɛʀk or; Dutch:; is a harbour city and a commune in the northernmost part of France, in the See also
While Members of Parliament and others have criticised the lack of strong parliamentary accountability for the British Council, the organisation does have close lobbying links to individual parliamentarians. These included the Conservative Party Shadow Culture spokesman Jeremy Hunt MP whose Hotcourses company has close links to The British Council through Sheffield Data Services . Jeremy Hunt (born 1 November 1966) is the Conservative MP for South West Surrey and Shadow Secretary of State for
Formally it is to its sponsoring department, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, that the UK Parliamentary Table Office refers any parliamentary questions about British Council . The Foreign and Commonwealth Office, commonly called the Foreign Office or the FCO, is the British government department responsible for promoting
The effectiveness of British Council efforts to promote higher education in China have also recently been examined in England by The House of Commons Select Committee on Education and Skills in a report issued on 5 August 2007 . Events 642 - Battle of Maserfield - Penda of Mercia defeats and kills Oswald of Bernicia. Year 2007 ( MMVII) was a Common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. It expressed concern that in terms of joint educational programmes involving Chinese universities, UK lagged behind Australia, USA, Hong Kong China, Canada and France. For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Australia topics. The United States of America —commonly referred to as the Hong Kong ( officially the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, is a territory located on China 's south coast on the Pearl River Delta, and borders Country to "Dominion of Canada" or "Canadian Federation" or anything else please read the Talk Page This article is about the country For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic France topics. In its evidence to this committee, The British Council had argued that "UK degrees are highly valued by international students for their global recognition. International students adopt an essentially utilitarian view of higher education which is likely to increasingly involve consideration of value for money, including opting for programmes at least partly delivered offshore". As their preferred marketing 'model', The British Council gave the example of India where their UK India Education and Research Initiative is being 'championed' by British multinational oil companies such as BP and Shell, the pharmaceutical giant GSK and arms company BAE Systems . India, officially the Republic of India (भारत गणराज्य inc-Latn Bhārat Gaṇarājya; see also other Indian languages) is a country BP plc, previously known as British Petroleum, is the third largest global Energy company, a multinational oil company (" Oil major Royal Dutch Shell plc, commonly known simply as Shell, is a multinational oil company of Dutch and British origins BAE Systems plc (BAE is a British defence and aerospace company headquartered in Farnborough, England, that has global interests particularly
Criticism of British Council marketing efforts have also come from Scotland where The Sunday Herald obtained documents under the Freedom of Information Act showing that British Council's Marketing Co-ordinator in the USA had been referring to The University of Stirling as 'The University of Sterling' (sic) and also documenting 'tensions' between Scottish Executive civil servants and British Council in India and China over overseas promotion of universities in Scotland where education is a devolved responsibility. The Sunday Herald reported that these turf wars were undermining the Scottish Executive's key Fresh Talent policy .
After 1998 education and culture in Scotland were devolved to the Scottish Parliament. The Scottish Parliament ( Scottish Gaelic: Pàrlamaid na h-Alba; Scots: Scottish Pairlament) is the devlolved national unicameral Charities registered in England (like British Council) which now wish to operate in Scotland are required to register as cross-border charities in Scotland from February 2007.
Founded in 1934 as the British Committee for Relations with Other Countries, the British Council was inspired by Sir Reginald (Rex) Leeper's recognition of the importance of "cultural propaganda" in promoting British interests.
It is also featured in one of the scenes in Graham Greene's The Third Man — the Wildfred Hyde-White character (Crabbin) in the film of that novel, worked for The British Council. Henry Graham Greene OM, CH (2 October 1904 &ndash 3 April 1991 was an English writer best known as a novelist but who also produced Short stories The Third Man ( is an award-winning British Film noir directed by Carol Reed and starring Joseph Cotten, Alida Valli, In 1946, the writer George Orwell advised serious authors not to work for it as a day-job arguing that "the effort [of writing] is too much to make if one has already squandered one's energies on semi-creative work such as teaching, broadcasting or composing propaganda for bodies such as the British Council" (from 'Horizon Questionnaire: The Cost of Letters', in Horizon, 1946). In her autobiography, Dame Stella Rimington, the first woman head of MI5, mentions working for British Council in India prior to joining the British Intelligence Services. Dame Stella Rimington, DCB (born May 1935) was the Director-General (DG of MI5 from 1992 British Council employees also seem to feature regularly in the special section of the UK Honours List reserved for those attached to overseas diplomatic postings despite the ambiguous status of the organisation and confusion over whether they are entitled to normal diplomatic immunities in countries such as Russia. The British Council has been referred to (and its man on-station, Goole) - frequently in a humorous way by Lawrence Durrell in his collection of anecdotes about a diplomat's life on foreign postings for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office - Antrobus Complete. Lawrence George Durrell ( February 27, 1912 &ndash November 7, 1990) was an expatriate British Novelist, Poet, Diplomacy is the art and practice of conducting Negotiations between representatives of groups or states
Chairs of the British Council have been:
In 2005, along with the Alliance française, the Società Dante Alighieri, the Goethe-Institut, the Instituto Cervantes and the Instituto Camões, the British Council shared in the Prince of Asturias Award for the outstanding achievements of Western Europe's national cultural agencies in communications and the humanities. William George Tyrrell 1st Baron Tyrrell GCB, GCMG, KCVO (1866 - 1947 was a British Diplomat. George Ambrose Lloyd 1st Baron Lloyd, GCSI, GCIE, DSO, PC (1879 &ndash February 4 1941) was a British Conservative Sir Malcolm Arnold Robertson, GCMG, KBE, PC, was the British Ambassador in Argentina from 1929 to 1932 David Kelly or Kelley can refer to David Kelley (b 1949 American philosopher and author David E Edward Ettingdene Bridges 1st Baron Bridges, KG, GCB, GCVO, PC, MC ( 4 August 1892 &ndash 27 August Bernard Edward Fergusson Baron Ballantrae, KT, GCMG, GCVO, DSO, OBE (6 May 1911 &ndash 28 November 1980 was a Brigadier Helena Ann Kennedy Baroness Kennedy of The Shaws QC, FRSA, (born 12 May 1950) is a British Barrister Neil Gordon Kinnock Baron Kinnock PC (born 28 March 1942 is a British Politician. The Alliance française ( AF) is an organisation whose mission is to promote French language and The Goethe-Institut ( Goethe Institute in English is a German cultural institution operational worldwide promoting the study of the German language The Cervantes Institute is a worldwide non-profit organization created by the Spanish government in 1991 The Instituto Camões ( En Camões Institute) is an institution created for the promotion of the Portuguese language and culture world-wide The Prince of Asturias Awards ( Spanish: Premios Príncipe de Asturias, Asturian: Premios Príncipe d'Asturies) is a series of prestigious annual At the time of this joint award the full extent of The British Council's closure policies in Europe was not yet public knowledge.