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Course content

This course will give you the insight, ideas and skills needed to be an effective leader in arts fundraising. You'll explore topics such as the history of philanthropy, cultural diplomacy, how to manage change, how to build resilience, and how to instil values into fundraising and development activity.

This course is led and co-ordinated by academic staff with significant industry experience, who are assisted by expert freelance tutors and senior arts consultants. Throughout, you'll reflect critically on your work-based learning and learn how to apply relevant theories to your everyday professional practice.

In order to study on this course, you must have completed our Summer School - a week of intensive study and practical activity that provides further opportunities for strategic thinking and planning. This takes place at the 4* hotel and conference centre of Weetwood Hall, a fully modernised 16th century manor house set in nine acres of woodland and gardens located just 4 miles from Leeds city centre. You can find out more about the Summer School here.

This unique course was established in 2014 as part of the Arts Fundraising and Philanthropy Programme, funded by Arts Council England. It brings together a specialised team of academics and practitioners who approach key issues of arts fundraising and leadership from a range of historical, theoretical and practical perspectives. The course also offers access to a wide range of relevant case studies, and is supported by sector-leading online resources which will help you to develop your critical thinking and analytical writing.

Course content

This course explores the history of arts and cultural philanthropy. It investigates underlying cultural policy models and debates, and situates arts fundraising within the broader fields of arts marketing and cultural management, whilst exploring the relative utility of strategic management tools, models and principles for leading contemporary arts organisations. The programme critically applies relevant concepts and theories pertaining to cultural entrepreneurship, change management and cultural leadership, and explores the challenges of implementing these ideas in evolving practices of arts fundraising.

Course structure

Compulsory modules

  • Professional Practice: Arts Fundraising and Philanthropy 30 credits 

Learning and teaching

The two modules that make up this course are taught in different ways. The Arts Fundraising and Leadership module takes the form of a Summer School, where you'll be taught through a balanced mix of lectures, seminars, tutorials, panel discussions, group activities, individual project work and group presentations. In addition, interactive panels and visits to nearby arts organisations provide a unique opportunity for participants to listen to, question and network with a range of senior arts leaders. The Professional Practice module is delivered online through dedicated webinars and tutorials, as well as individual online supervision.


The Arts Fundraising and Leadership module is assessed through a group presentation (30%) and an individual essay (70%). The Professional Practice module is assessed via an extended reflective work-based learning report.

Visit the Arts Fundraising and Philanthropy PGCert page on the University of Leeds website for more details!





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Recipient: University of Leeds

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