Equality, diversity and inclusion

The British Council has five core organisational values - valuing people, integrity, mutuality, creativity and professionalism. These govern our organisational culture, the decisions we make and how we behave internally and in our dealings with clients, customers and suppliers.

These values underpin how we implement equality of opportunity and how we value diversity and inclusiveness.

In line with our values, we are strongly committed to the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion agenda. We work to promote the United Kingdom's achievements in this area and to showcase relevant British Council work.

Equality and Inclusion is focused on legislating against unjustified discrimination and the fair treatment of specific groups. It's about treating people fairly, identifying and removing barriers that get in the way of this and redressing existing imbalances, so that groups which continue to be disadvantaged gain access to opportunities for full participation in the workplace and in wider society.

Diversity is focused on making effective use of the differences and similarities between people. It's about creating working environments that value a range of differences, believing that understanding and managing these can lead to organisational and societal benefit.

When we talk about equal opportunity and diversity in the British Council, we focus on seven main areas:

  • Age
  • Disability
  • Ethnicity/race
  • Gender (which includes transgender)
  • Religion/belief
  • Sexual orientation
  • Work-life balance

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion in Singapore

As part of the Children's Literature in Language Education Conference 2010, Jamie Gibbings (former Manager, Marsiling Centre) was invited to present on Exploring Diversity through Literature with Primary Learners. Young Learner courses at the British Council Singapore aim to improve overall and specific language competencies, but also to introduce wider social and cultural themes. At Primary level story and picture books can be powerful tools for raising awareness, framing issues and launching discussions. Themes and stories discussed as examples included:

Disability: Susan Laughs (Jeanne Willis and Tony Ross)
Race: Black, White, Just Right! (Marguerite W. Davol)
Gender Roles: Bill's New Frock (Anne Fine)