International offices: guide

A guide to the work of our nine international offices who work to promote Scottish interests overseas and strengthen our relationships with countries and continents.

Washington DC

Our USA office was established in 2001 to promote Scotland’s interests through political, cultural and economic diplomacy. It is based in the British Embassy in Washington DC. We published Scotland’s Engagement Strategy with the USA in 2017. Scottish Development International currently employs 34 staff across the broad range of trade and investment priorities within offices located in Chicago, Houston and San Jose together with staff working in other locations across the US.

The office works on:

  • building government-to-government relationships at the federal, congressional, state and city level
  • supporting cultural relationships and exchange opportunities
  • working with Scotland’s higher education institutions to showcase excellence in the sector
  • working with Scottish Development International to support the implementation of the US aspects of the Export Growth Strategy and positioning Scotland as a leading business location and trade partner
  • promoting Scotland’s reputation by deepening links with the USA-Scottish diaspora and delivering on commitments in the Scottish Connections Framework

We will foster relationships with a range of political, cultural and economic stakeholders working with partners both in Scotland and the US to develop mutually beneficial partnerships. We will work to increase awareness of Scotland’s distinct position on issues such as the UK’s departure from the EU, climate change and the Arctic.

Strategic objectives

Priorities for 2023 to 2024

Building and strengthening relationships:

  • develop the US Caucus to diversify and include more members who have similar policy interests, looking beyond heritage to find opportunities for collaboration and policy exchange. Add 4-5 new members in this space (20% increase)
  • continue to refresh and diversify our diaspora groups, supporting those taking a more inclusive approach
  • develop relationships with operational level leadership in at least 3 states/territories/municipalities to investigate potential for enhanced relationships on policy and trade and investment

Contributing to Scotland's trade and investment objectives:

  • leverage ScotWind and other developments to highlight Scotland as a leader in renewable energy, and a prime place for investment in both clean energy infrastructure and associated industries
  • support SDI by making links, introductions, and attending events and conferences where possible
  • explore opportunities to develop the narrative on Community Wealth Building and Wellbeing Economy, including in partnership with other sub-national actors

Contributing to Scotland's climate change, biodiversity, and renewable energy objectives:

  • highlight Scotland's leadership in renewable energy and the potential for investment in this sector
  • support SDI's work to attract investment in renewable energy and associated industries
  • explore opportunities to collaborate with other sub-national actors on climate change, biodiversity, and renewable energy

See previous strategic objectives in our website archive.


Head of Washington DC office: Christopher Thomson


Twitter: @ScotGovUSA

LinkedIn: The Scottish Government in the USA 


Scottish Government Washington DC Office
British Embassy
3100 Massachusetts Ave NW
DC 20008
United States


Email: Central Enquiries Unit

Telephone: 0300 244 4000

International Division
Scottish Government
2G North
Victoria Quay

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