Our governance

Information about the governance and management bodies that advise our Secretary of State on DFID's policy and strategy.

Departmental board

The board advises on and monitors the delivery of the Secretary of State’s strategy and policy priorities.

These include:

The board is chaired by the Secretary of State and meets quarterly in formal session. It also meets informally every week to review progress against the Departmental Plan.


The board’s secretariat is provided by the Permanent Secretary’s office and its work is governed by the Departmental board operating framework (PDF, 99.9KB, 4 pages)

Executive Management Committee

This committee provides strategic direction to the management of our operations, staff and financial resources. It is chaired by the Permanent Secretary. Its membership includes the 4 directors-general and the non-executive directors.


The committee meets every month that the departmental board does not meet.

Our staff can feed in comments on the papers either through the author of the paper or through their director-general. From time to time the committee may hold an informal consultation with staff on a specific topic, prior to the meeting.

The Executive Management Committee is supported by these sub-committees:

Development Policy Committee

Chaired by Director General Nick Dyer, the committee supports the effective delivery of our business plan policy commitments. It aims to:

  • provide direction on key policy and cross-cutting issues
  • promote synergy between central, regional and multilateral activities to improve delivery
  • monitor policy implementation
  • drive lesson-learning to ensure our delivery continues to improve

Audit Committee

Chaired by Non-Executive Director Richard Keys, the Audit Committee helps ensure we remain a financially sound and efficient organisation that makes full and effective use of resources in support of our business plan. The committee also advises the accounting officer on the adequacy of risk, control and governance of our processes.

Investment Committee

Chaired by Director General Joy Hutcheon, the committee ensures our investments represent good value for money for UK taxpayers and that clear systems exist to take strategic financial decisions on the basis of evidence. It also advises the Executive Management Committee on developing our organisational culture and capability on value for money.

Security Committee

Chaired by Director General Lindy Cameron, the Security Committee is responsible for monitoring the adequacy and effectiveness of all aspects of our security globally. Its primary focus is on people security but it also concentrates on all aspects of physical, personnel, information security or health and safety.

Senior Leadership Committee

Chaired by Permanent Secretary Mark Lowcock, Senior Leadership Committee leads and manages senior civil service (SCS) posts and staffing in support of our drive for efficiency, change, results and value for money.

The committee’s main role is to:

  • consider SCS posts and staffing at an early stage
  • assess the people implications for strategy
  • lead our policy and organisational change
  • oversee talent management, including succession planning and personal development
  • manage the SCS pay and performance reward strategy