The Independent Advisory Group on Country Information (IAGCI)

The IAGCI works on behalf of the Chief Inspector by commissioning and quality assuring reviews of the Home Office's country policy and information notes.


Section 48 (2) (j) of the UK Borders Act 2007 states that the Chief Inspector shall consider and make recommendations about ‘the content of information and conditions in countries outside the United Kingdom which the Secretary of State compiles and makes available, for purposes connected with immigration and asylum, to immigration and other officials.’

The IAGCI was established in 2009 to succeed the Advisory Panel on Country Information. IAGCI advises the Independent Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration (ICIBI) about the content and quality of country information and guidance notes produced by the Home Office and relied upon by decision makers.

IAGCI commissions and quality assures reviews from independent reviewers, typically academics with relevant knowledge and expertise, of selected country information. The work is funded by ICIBI. Following an IAGCI review, the ICIBI sends a report to the Home Secretary with their recommendations.


Membership of the IAGCI is by invitation of the ICIBI and is voluntary and unpaid. Members are respected academics and representatives of organisations with a working interest in country information and how it is used by the Home Office. The group meets up to three times a year although additional meetings can be scheduled at the request of the Chief Inspector.

  • Professor Mike Collyer (Chair) – University of Sussex
  • Dr Ceri Oeppen – University of Sussex
  • Professor Giorgia Dona – University of East London (UEL)
  • Dr Nando Sigona – University of Birmingham
  • Dr Julie Vullnetari – University of Southampton
  • Mark Blundell – Upper Tribunal Judge
  • Katinka Ridderbos – UNHCR Geneva
  • Harriet Short – Immigration Law Practitioners’ Association (ILPA)
  • Larry Bottinick – UNHCR London
  • Zoe Bantleman – Immigration Law Practitioners’ Association (ILPA)

Contact details

Independent Advisory Group on Country Information (IAGCI),
Independent Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration,
1st Floor, Clive House,
70 Petty France,
London, SW1H 9EX


Archived Content

ICIBI Archived Content (pre 3 Aug 2017)

Advisory Panel on Country Information (Archived on 27 July 2008)


‘The minutes of IAGCI meetings held prior to 2016 can be viewed on the National Archives’ website.

Invitations to tender

COI Inspections

The Chief Inspector has also conducted a standard inspection of the Home Office’s Production and use of Country of Origin Information.

Published 9 August 2017
Last updated 29 February 2024 + show all updates
  1. Two IAGCI reports have been published.

  2. COI report has been published. 1. Inspection report on Home Office country of origin information, Iraq and Myanmar (Burma) January 2023

  3. First published.