Ruth Ur

Head of Arts & Development, British Council

Ruth joined the British Council in 1998. Since then, she has held a series of British Council arts-related posts both in the UK and overseas, including Director for Arts in Turkey. In Turkey, Ruth initiated and designed My City, a major art in public space programme in cities across Europe and Turkey, funded by the EU and featuring artists such as Mark Wallinger, Clemens von Wedermeyer and Gulsun Karamustafa.

Ruth’s current work is focused on investigating and developing new directions for the British Council, in particular looking into how cultural relations can contribute to international development and new models for European cultural cooperation. She is also a commissioner for a major piece of research related to cultural practice and social change in the context of the Arab Spring conducted by the University of York. She is the editor of Space Invaders, a guide to young British architects, was curator of the British Pavilion at the Venice Biennale in 2002, and is regularly invited to sit on design and architecture juries.

Ruth read Philosophy and History of Art at King’s College, Cambridge. When she is not travelling, Ruth Ur divides her time between London and Alsace.

I think MORE EUROPE is exactly what we want, where we should be going. But how on earth are we going to do that?

To work together we must not just wait for a lowest common denominator. Our local partners should come to us and tell us what they want, not let us develop something on their behalf.