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Update: March 2022:

As we review the resource and support needed to deliver this work, our plans have started to change and the Trustee Board agreed to put on hold recruitment to the Culture Commission while our new Chief Executive engaged in an extensive listening exercise through a series of roundtables in Autumn 2021 and a specific survey which closed in February 2022.

Terms of Reference – April 2021


The Trustees have established this Culture Commission to develop a vision for the future culture of the fundraising profession, and for the future culture of the Chartered Institute, that is truly inclusive, where everyone can thrive.

They have asked this Culture Commission to lead our thinking on developing and then delivering this long-term systemic change in culture across the fundraising community and within the Chartered Institute.

The Culture Commission is a time-limited group to lead our thinking, advise on our priorities and approaches, and provide challenge and support to our Trustees and staff team.

Ways of working

The Culture Commission itself will be inclusive in its approach, looking outwards for ideas, evidence, challenge and inspiration.

It will need to engage not only with the wider sector to inform its work, but more widely, seeking ideas and experience from outside of the charity sector as well as from within it. Once set up, it will agree a programme of evidence gathering and engagement to inform its thinking.

Its approach will be open and inclusive, with an expectation that where possible and appropriate evidence gathering sessions will be accessible to all.

Commissioners will be supported by the staff team and will agree a series of hearings on a range of topics. It is envisaged that these will be conducted via zoom to ensure wide engagement and reach. Each hearing will have a theme, will hear from a series of expert contributors, after which feedback from members and the wider community will be sought.

Due to the nature of its remit, it will work particularly closely with the Chartered Institute’s Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Committee, but will also engage with our Standards Advisory Board, Learning Development Committee and Fundraising Convention Board to develop its thinking.

Role and responsibilities

The Culture Commission shall

  1. Gather evidence, advice and best practice in relation to developing and delivering inclusive cultures within organisations, and across sectors
  2. Reflect on best practice, experience and innovative thinking from across society in order to provide an overarching narrative for the culture of the profession we want to create
  3. Provide strategic advice, guidance and challenge to the Trustees and staff team Trustees on how to build a truly inclusive profession and truly inclusive Chartered Institute.
  4. Develop an overarching framework or approach for the Chartered Institute’s work to deliver cultural change across the sector and across the Chartered Institute
  5. Feed into the development of a new strategy for the Chartered Institute, to ensure we are taking the right approach to create a truly inclusive profession.

Time-limit and frequency of meetings

We want the Culture Commission to work thoughtfully but speedily, to inform our approach moving forward.

We expect the Commission to exist for no more than a year, but we do not want to be too prescriptive at this stage.


The Culture Commission will have an independent chair from outside the profession and bring together a small group of Commissioners recruited through an open process to lead its work.

There shall be 5 Commissioners, three of whom shall be individual members of the Chartered Institute, or work for organisational members of the Chartered Institute.

We expect the Commissioners to be diverse, bringing in diverse experiences from across and outside the sector.

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