National Summer School for Arts Fundraising and Leadership 2014

Summer School 2014The National Summer School for Arts Fundraising and Leadership offers an intensive programme of study for emerging cultural entrepreneurs and will be led by renowned academics and arts sector professionals.

Led by the University of Leeds in partnership with the Arts Fundraising & Philanthropy Programme, this new course in fundraising leadership is aimed at arts managers giving them a breadth of insight, ideas and skills in how to lead arts fundraising in challenging economic times.

It is also an accredited course with the University of Leeds, and represents half of the credits required for a Post Graduate Certificate in Arts Fundraising and Philanthropy – see below for more information.

Who it is for
The Summer School is aimed at arts managers, fundraisers and practitioners with at least three years’ experience of employment in fundraising and/or the arts or cultural sector. It is for people who would like to develop their careers as arts leaders, whether leading organisations or development teams.

Course content
The Summer School will be delivered through a mixture of lectures, tutorials, panel discussions, group activities, individual project work and presentations. It will be an opportunity to meet with and work with peers from across the country as well as learn from highly experienced academics and practitioners. The taught sessions will include the following:

  • History and context: philanthropy and cultural policy in the US & UK: this session will explore the history of arts patronage and philanthropy and the underlying policy drivers. It will compare the US and UK models of funding and critique key aspects of both policy models, focussing on the pros and cons of each and outlining a possible third way.
  • Change Management: in this interactive lecture, we will cover the core ideas and theories behind change management and critically evaluate their application to arts organisations through an in-depth case study of West Yorkshire Playhouse. In particular, we will ask ourselves: Which factors drive change in the arts? What does a major change initiative look and feel like? What are the common pitfalls? How can change involve and be communicated to stakeholders?
  • Arts Management: history, theory and strategy: this session will summarise the history of the academic field of Arts Management and critically investigate its so-called ‘legitimacy problems’ as an emerging area of practice and research. Participants will consider and discuss what differentiates Arts Management from other forms of management practice and disciplines and explore the benefits and challenges of applying Strategic Management theory in the context of the arts and culture.
  • Business Creation / Financial Strategy & Management: details TBC
  • Cultural Leadership: in this session, we will critically investigate the particular challenges that cultural leaders face in serving the diverse, and sometimes competing, interests of their staff, peers, artists, funders, politicians and the general public. Through a case study of organisational change at the RSC, we will explore issues of management and authority, and evaluate the interrelationship between leadership style and organisational structure.
  • Networking and personal branding: effective networking is arguably one of the most important skills and tools in fundraising. This session will explore the processes involved in successful networking and give participants some practical tools to develop their own networking skills and enhance their personal brands. There will be an opportunity to put the skills learned to the test at the Summer School evening reception and dinner.
  • Building financial resilience in the arts: this session will pick up on aspects of change leadership and strategic management in the arts and investigate the concept of resilience. We will explore how different arts and cultural organisations are adapting their business models in light of economic, artistic, social and technological changes. Through a series of case studies, and drawing on change leadership models, participants will explore the role of the fundraiser in business model innovation and creating more resilient arts and cultural organisations.

Interactive panels and visits to arts organisations will provide a unique opportunity for participants to listen to, question and network with a range of senior arts leaders. Hosted at The Tetley and at The Hepworth, panel debates will be focussed around hot topics and areas of controversy in arts fundraising and philanthropy (e.g. the concept of the ‘paying board’ and the disparity of fundraising between London and the so-called ‘regions’).

Download the National Summer School 2014 draft programme


Costs and booking
The cost for attending the Summer School is £1,750 + VAT. This includes all teaching, accommodation, meals, course materials, two expert panel discussions, a networking reception and dinner at The Tetley, and a visit to The Hepworth in Wakefield.

* Information on the 2015 National Summer School will be published soon. To register your interest, please email and we will send you details when available. *

Practical details
The Summer School takes place at Weetwood Hall Conference Centre & Hotel in Leeds ( and runs from Sunday 31 August 2014 at 4pm until Fri 5 September 2014 at 3.30pm.

Most days run from 9.30am-5.30pm, but participants will need to undertake project work during the evenings. On the final evening there will be a dinner at The Tetley – a new centre for contemporary art and learning located in the stunning art deco headquarters of the former Tetley Brewery in central Leeds.

Download the National Summer School 2014 leaflet


 About the tutors

  • Dr Ben Walmsley (Programme Director) – Lecturer in Creativity & Collaboration at the University of Leeds School of Performance and Cultural Industries
  • Professor John Hayes – Emeritus Professor at Leeds University Business School
  • Vince Dispenza – MBA Full Time and MBA Executive Programme Director for Leeds University Business School
  • Dr Anna Upchurch – Lecturer in Cultural Industries at the University of Leeds School of Performance and Cultural Industries
  • Claire Antrobus – Independent consultant, researcher, coach and facilitator working nationally and internationally in the cultural and non-profit sectors
  • Jo Boardman – freelance consultant working with and supporting charities, social enterprises & SMEs across the UK
  • Sue Hayton – Business Development Manager at the Cultural & Creative Industries Exchange at the University of Leeds

Click here to find out more about the tutors

Post Graduate Certificate in Arts Fundraising and Philanthropy
The University of Leeds will be offering a Post Graduate Certificate in Arts Fundraising and Philanthropy in 2014/15. The award will be achieved by successful completion of two 30-credit modules:

  • Module 1: successful completion of the Summer School (assessment will comprise an individual essay and group project work & presentations undertaken during the Summer School)
  • Module 2: a work-based reflective professional practice module delivered at distance but supported by online resources, webinars and a research supervisor based at the University of Leeds

Click here for more details of the Post Graduate Certificate in Arts Fundraising and Philanthropy

Download a leaflet on the University of Leeds Post Graduate Certificate in Arts Fundraising and Philanthropy


Note: enrolling for the Post Graduate Certificate is optional – you can attend the Summer School as a stand-alone course.

Weetwood Hall

Hepworth Wakefield

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