The Japan Foundation
Performing Arts Network Japan
European Foundation Centre (EFC)
European Foundation Centre (EFC)

78, avenue de la Toison d'Or
1060 Brussels, Belgium
Tel: +32.2.512.8938
Fax: +32.2.512.3265
E-mail: efc[a]efc.beg
Arts Organization of the Month Arts Organization of the Month
Oct. 25, 2010
European Foundation Centre (EFC) 
The European Foundation Centre was established in Belgium in 1989 as an international non-profit association of public benefit foundations and corporate funders active in Europe and beyond. In addition to disseminating information about the activities of foundations broadly over the Internet, the Centre has created a network of fellowships and independent funders to help empower foundation workers and build their capacities. Presently the Centre has 236 member foundations in 40 countries, of which 24% are from outside Europe. The areas of greatest interest among the member foundations are education and the arts and culture, followed by community development, health and science. Each of the four priority areas of the EFC’s activities is led by a specialized policy and strategy committee:

Creating and enabling legal and fiscal environment for foundations: The organization seeks to give a voice to independent funders in the European Union and on the global level and to provide members with critical legal and fiscal guidance and knowledge.

Documenting and communicating European philanthropy: The organization works to built an in-depth knowledge base on foundations and corporate funders active in and with Europe, and to disseminate the knowledge through a range of channels, including the internet and hard-copy publications such as the Centre’s flagship publication Effect magazine.

Capacity building: Efforts are made to help foundation staff strengthen their professional skills through such programs as the International Fellowship Programme (IFP), which supports staff of European foundations and other non-profit organizations in improving their management and leadership competences through working stays in other European countries.

Network building: Efforts are aimed at giving independent funders a platform through interest groups and forums, and forming partnerships with other grant-maker associations, including European national associations of donors, consortia of funders, public authorities, multilateral institutions and individual donors in Europe and the world.

Ultimate decision-making authority is vested in the EFC Annual General Assembly, at which members discuss a variety of issues related to the independent funding sector. It is a week-long event with admission-free programs that are open to public as well, such as “Open Debates” and an exhibition “Interactive Fair” where NGOs, multilateral organizations, think tanks, other actors engaged with the foundation sector, and the general public gather.

Organizations who do not qualify for EFC Membership, including associations, cooperatives, research institutes, universities and other interested parties (except individuals), can get involved with the EFC by becoming an EFC Associate.