We support cultural changemakers and their projects through our grants and exchange programmes.
Together, we bring new inspiring ideas to diverse audiences across Europe and neighbouring countries.
Find out more about the projects we support through our regular instagram takeovers by grantees. 

 Tandem Europe, photo by Constanze Flamme

Tandem Europe, photo by Constanze Flamme


Tandem supports long-term cooperation, knowledge development and networking opportunities between cultural managers across wider Europe. Launched in 2011 and developed as part of our European Neighbourhood programme, Tandem has brought together more than 400 independent cultural organisations and supported the professional development of over 320 cultural managers coming from more than 160 cities and 35 countries in wider Europe. Throughout a year-long collaboration, participants work together to co-develop cultural projects and take part in a vocational placement at each other’s organisation. Tandem is an initiative of ECF and MitOst e.V.


STEP travel grants

Supporting Travel for Engaged Partnership: STEP travel grants support creative and critical cultural workers travelling across Europe and its neighbouring countries, to help foster a society with greater solidarity, equality and a stronger sense of social justice. STEP is open for applications year-round.
STEP is initiated and managed by ECF with the support of Compagnia di San Paolo.

  Landing AR3101  ©Sylvain Raybaud

Landing AR3101 ©Sylvain Raybaud

 Idea Camp 2017, photo by César Lucas Abreu.

Idea Camp 2017, photo by César Lucas Abreu.


Research & Development grants


In 2014, 2015 and 2017, ECF launched an open call to submit innovative ideas that address Europe-wide issues. A selection of 50 applicants from different sectors and countries were invited to attend an Idea Camp - a three-day incubator workshop with opportunities to network, find new partners for collaboration, develop ideas and take part in training. Each edition, twenty-five of these projects received Research & Development (R&D) grants of up to €10.000 to take their ideas to the next level.




FundAction is a new participatory fund making grants for social transformation. 

Participatory grant-making seeks to involve those directly affected by the issues — the people that the money intends to help — in decision-making about where the money goes. It can be a more effective way of reaching people and addressing issues of power. 

The new fund offers three kinds of grants: Renew, Rethink, Resist.

Cultural activists can become a member of FundAction, and meet digitally and in person. A dedicated online platform allows group decision-making and discussions, and proposal submission and review. 

FundAction is a project by ECF, Fondation Charles Léopold Mayer, Guerilla Foundation, and Open Society Foundation Initiatives Europe.


We previously managed the Balkans Arts and Culture Fund (BAC). Read more.