Responsible, Imaginative, Independent. For over two decades, these three values have underpinned and driven all our work. They embody both how we want to work and the impact we want to have. We regularly review and reinterpret these to reflect our changing context.


We are committed to

  • placing artists at the heart of everything we do
  • building a more resilient sector
  • fair pay and conditions
  • inclusivity and access
  • being a learning organisation
  • accountability – to our beneficiaries and our board
  • environmental sustainability
  • responsible investment
  • openness and transparency
  • inviting feedback.


We are committed to:

  • listening to the needs of those we support
  • enabling artists to create adventurous and ambitious work
  • supporting artists from all backgrounds based anywhere in the UK
  • empowering artists to experiment and take risks free from commercial pressures
  • supporting artists to develop their practice and realise new ideas
  • embracing difference and acknowledging that in doing so we need to act differently ourselves.


We are committed to

  • artistic freedom of expression
  • sharing our vision and demonstrating the impact of our work
  • being a bold change-maker and leading by example
  • advocating and using our influence strategically
  • collaborating with specialist partners and other funders who share our aims.

From Values to Action

As an independent funder we recognise we play a particular role in the arts and cultural ecology. We recognise the soft power our role gives us and are committed to using our influence responsibly towards positive change across the sector. Above all, we want to be kind. Funding is scarce at the best of times, so we want our ‘no’ to be the kindest, most useful, silver-lining filled ‘no’ it can be.

Every day, we translate and adapt our values into our working practices in response to the needs of artists and arts organisations. We make sure we stay educated and up to date on current issues, and have policies in place to guide our approach – from Artist’s Care to Safeguarding.

Three main Action Plans drive our progress and embed our values into our everyday work:

  • Equality, Diversity and Inclusion
  • Fair Pay and Conditions
  • Environmental Sustainability

Making it easier, more equitable and a more positive experience overall for people to find out about what we do, apply for our opportunities and collaborate with us is at the heart of all our Action Plans. To support us in being more accountable, we are also a member of the Open and Trusting campaign run by the Institute for Voluntary Action Research (IVAR) and London Funders. Along with more than 50 other UK foundations and charities, we have signed up to the campaign’s eight commitments, which align strongly with our values and set out practical ways for us to be more open and accessible.

The Action Plans below provide a snapshot of our work in this area and are updated annually. They were last updated in March 2022.

We are a learning organisation and are committed to educating ourselves and keeping our minds open. If you have feedback for us, we’re listening at [email protected]

Sadler's Wells Jerwood Studio, Le Patin Libre 's Vertical Influences. Pictured: Samory Ba. Image: Alicia Clarke

Actions Plans

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

We are committed to improving equality, diversity and inclusion across the arts through our funding. Research shows that diversity is vital to artistic vibrancy and vision, but change has been slow. Since 2010, we have been particularly focused on improving opportunities for individuals from working class/low socio-economic backgrounds to get into the arts through the Weston Jerwood Creative Bursaries programme.

Research shows that the arts does not provide adequate support or opportunities for the work, health and livelihoods of people from African, Caribbean, LatinX or South and East Asian heritage, those with disabilities or long-term health conditions, those from low socio-economic backgrounds, and those facing intersecting barriers. There has been historic underrepresentation of people who identify with these backgrounds, identities and communities, which has been compounded by the social and economic effects of the pandemic.

We are committed to supporting those who have experienced racism, prejudice and marginalisation by making sure as far as possible that our opportunities are accessible to those facing discrimination and structural barriers.

Since 2019 we have published reports and data on who applies and who is successful, using this to focus our marketing and actions around accessibility and positive action in selection processes.

Fair Pay and Conditions

Jerwood Arts is a Living Wage Foundation Employer and Living Wage Funder. We are committed to ensuring that artists are appropriately paid for their time, contribution and expertise, whether directly by us or through our funded projects. Artists, makers, curators and producers benefiting from our funding must be paid at least the Living Wage Foundation rate. In most cases, we want those we fund to offer fees at above this rate in recognition of their skill, expertise and training. Where we offer an opportunity, we will say how much time is required from the artists and how the pay will meet at least our minimum standards.

All applications made to our opportunities must show how those working on the project or programme are paid fairly.

Some unions and support organisations, which offer guidance:

Environmental Sustainability

As a responsible funder we are committed to developing more sustainable and environmentally friendly practices across all our work. Our approach has been influenced by the Sustaining Great Art and Culture report published by Arts Council England and Julie’s Bicycle, and the Charities and Environmental Responsibility guidance issued by the Charity Commission. We are a founding member of Culture Declares and a signatory to the Funders Commitment on Climate Change. We are committed to the following:

  • undertaking training and sharing our learning amongst our team and those we work with
  • using suppliers who hold and actively pursue their own environmental policies
  • working with local businesses and caterers to reduce travel costs and carbon emissions
  • walking, cycling and using public transport wherever possible whilst on Jerwood Arts business
  • using technology to reduce the need for travel, improve energy consumption and reduce waste
  • reducing consumables used in the office and recycling
  • using Fair Trade and more environmentally friendly products where possible
  • reducing, reusing and recycling materials we use
  • reducing energy consumption in our office