Investment seminars 


In collaboration with Official Partners, ACF hosts Investment seminars for trustees and senior foundation executives twice a year. This unique programme empowers participants to realise the full potential of their investment assets to achieve their charitable and financial objectives. Following the publication of Investment: The Pillars of Stronger Foundation Practice in 2020 the seminars also a provide a basic introduction to implementing the behaviours from the report.

The seminars are for trustees and senior staff at endowed foundations; and are suitable for those new to investment and those well-versed in investment matters. Please note, they are not open to participants who are employed in the investment consultancy and investment management industry.

Next seminars: 17 and 18 November

Our next set of investment seminars will be held in-person on 17 and 18 November in central London. We will be following government Covid-19 guidance and will keep participants up to date with any key changes to the programme.
Participants can book to attend one or both days. Priority booking will be given to those who are attending both seminars. Attendance is free for ACF members. 

Book now 


Seminar programme

Day 1: The prior questions - Financial policy         

This seminar covers the key strategic issues that foundation trustees need to consider before approaching the investment markets.

Topics covered include:
An introduction to Investment: The Pillars of Stronger Foundation Practice
The legal and charitable context – trustees’ legal, fiduciary and moral responsibilities within the law and regulatory guidance
Deciding what to spend – developing a framework within which to address this key question for endowed foundations
The role of mission, values and reputation in driving investment strategy
Getting your governance arrangements right – assessing the strengths and weaknesses of your foundation’s approach


Day 2: Investment policy and execution        

This seminar equips trustees to put their endowment strategy into practice. 

Topics covered include:
How financial policy feeds into the objectives of your investment policy
The relationship of risk and return in investment strategy, the characteristics of different asset classes and the purpose of diversification
The range of investment approaches and styles, and how endowment size and capacity may constrain your choices
How to go about choosing managers – the process and the principles – and how mandates are designed
The direct and hidden costs of different styles of investment and asset classes
How to judge the performance of investment managers
What can happen in times of extreme economic and financial stress and how markets can behave



We’re excited to bring you a line-up of experts from our four Official Partners, as well as senior foundation executives from across our membership.

Book now


For any queries about the seminars or for support with booking your ticket, please get in touch with [email protected].  


You're in good company...

“It was thorough, interesting with an excellent group of presenters” — 2021 participant


“The seminars covered a really good range of topics and helped me to understand what I should be focusing on” — 2020 participant


“An added benefit for me was to connect with people from other similar organisations” — 2020 participant


ACF runs a number of other Investment learning programme events throughout the year. Members can access recordings of these sessions here. For further information on our Investment learning programme please email [email protected].



ACF is very grateful to our Official Partners for hosting the investment seminars and sharing their expertise with our members.

Official partner programme