How we work

We are led by our donor board and rely on the expertise of our team, advisory board and networks to develop our strategy and grantmaking.

We don’t accept applications for funding but individuals and organizations can apply to programmes that we support.

We ask that all materials resulting from our grants be made freely available online.

Grant programmes

Organizations and individuals can apply for funding through our Nature and Culture grant programmes.

Our grant programmes are hosted for us by partner organizations. We choose partners that have the knowledge and capacity to identify where the greatest need and opportunity exists. Each grant programme invites applications on a specific theme. Expert advisory panels review the grants, which the partner organization then manages. 

We also participate in collaborative funding initiatives with other foundations. 

These partnerships allow us to support local initiatives worldwide that deliver clear outcomes.

We have five cultural grant programmes and five environmental grant programmes.

Strategic grants

Outside our grant programmes, we also make a limited number of direct grants in our funding areas. Our boards and team identify grant recipients through our research. We do not accept applications for our strategic grants.

Strategic grants are often based on long-term relationships with organizations. We prefer to support organizations’ core costs but also support projects or, on occasion, endowments. Occasionally we make smaller, shorter-term grants to test a new idea or relationship.

Discretionary grants

In addition to our three funding areas, we sometimes give grants to organizations and causes that the members of our donor board have a personal ongoing commitment to, or interest in.

Our principles and policies

Arcadia is a family foundation. Our donor board members lead our decision-making and they and our team take a deep interest in the work of our grantees. We limit the number of decisions we take each year so we have time to consider each one carefully. We try not to impose strict conditions on grant recipients and instead build relationships of trust. We support organizations which take an evidence-led approach and are willing to learn from their challenges as well as their successes.

As an environmental and open access funder, we operate with these ideals in mind, encouraging grantees to follow best practice in these areas.

Open access and digital preservation policy

Environmental sustainability policy

Annual summaries

Download our recent annual reports in PDF format. Our annual summaries provide information about our giving annually.