*NEW COURSE* Fundraising Ethics - a Masterclass with Ian MacQuillin (29-Apr-20)

*NEW COURSE* Fundraising Ethics - a Masterclass with Ian MacQuillin (29-Apr-20)

Date: Wednesday 29th Apr 2020

09:45 - Registration
10:00 - Course start
16:45 - Course end

Town/City: Westminster

Location: London

Venue: IoF Office

Directions / Address

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Would you partner with a tobacco company? Should you return a donation if it’s been raised by inappropriate means? Is it ever acceptable to make someone feel guilty as a tactic to persuade them to donate? This masterclass is for anyone who wants to gain a more nuanced understanding of fundraising ethics and apply that knowledge in practice to make better ethical-decisions. Length of time in fundraising and seniority of position are not relevant criteria for who should attend.

These are not easy questions, particularly if you’re trying to work out what to do from scratch. Yet much ethical decision-making in fundraising takes a gut-feel approach that is rarely grounded in existing ethical theory or arrived at through established decision-making frameworks.

This full-day ethics masterclass will introduce delegates to ethical theory and how it can be used to establish not just what the right thing to do in fundraising is, but also for whom you ought to do the right thing. We’ll explore a number of ethical dilemmas in fundraising and use an ethical decision making framework developed by the fundraising thing tank Rogare to give us the best chance of doing right by our donors and our beneficiaries.

During this masterclass Ian covers:

Ethics in fundraising, Part 1, the theory: How do you know what the ‘right thing’ is?

It’s often said that fundraisers ‘just need to do the right thing’. But how do you decide what ‘the right thing’ really is?  And to whom do you owe this ethical duty? To act ethically in a professional context, you need a bespoke theory of professional ethics. Yet fundraising doesn’t have one. This session reviews what theory has been developed for fundraising ethics and outlines the first ethical theory developed specifically for the practice of fundraising.

Learning outcomes

Delegates will:

  • Gain a basic knowledge of ethical theory to better contextualise ethical issues in fundraising.
  • Identify different ‘normative’ approaches to fundraising ethics and understand how to apply these in professional practice.
  • Critique codes of practice from an ethical perspective.


Ethics in fundraising, Part 2, the practice: doing the right thing (for the right stakeholder)

In part one we looked out how we identified what the ‘right’ (i.e. ethical) thing in fundraising is. In this second part, we’ll consider how to feed this into an ethical decision-making framework. This will be an interactive session, with delegates working through a series of fundraising ethical dilemmas.

Learning outcomes

Delegates will:

  • Understand what an ethical dilemma in fundraising is and differentiate it from a ‘moral temptation’.
  • Apply the theory considered in part 1 to actual ethical dilemmas in fundraising using a new decision-making framework.
  • Make better ethical justifications for the actions they choose to take, or choose not to take, to the media, board, donors and other stakeholders.


Part 3: What images of our beneficiaries ought we project? The ethics of beneficiary ‘framing’

A look at how charity beneficiaries ought to be portrayed – ­ framed ­– in marketing and fundraising materials. We’ll look at the evidence and arguments for and against using images that raise the most money and those that aim at maintaining the ‘dignity’ of beneficiaries’ and challenge stereotypes about them, and try to find a way to reconcile these two poles.

Learning outcomes:

  • Understand what the evidence says about the effectiveness of positive and negative framing in fundraising materials and how to apply this in fundraising
  • Understand and critically examine the ethical context for using positive and negative framing
  • Use this new knowledge to achieve consensus in opposing (ideological) positions about how to present beneficiary images and stories in fundraising


About your trainer:

Ian MacQuillin MInstF(Dip) is the director of the international fundraising think tank Rogare, which he founded in 2014. Rogare aims to help fundraisers better use theory and evidence in by translating academic ideas into professional practice and building fundraising’s knowledge base.

He’s recognised as a leading thinker on fundraising ethics, having developed a new theory of fundraising ethics that seeks to balance fundraisers’ duties to both their donors and beneficiaries.

Ian edits the Critical Fundraising blog and runs and moderates the Critical Fundraising Forum on Facebook, which has more that 1,1000 critically-minded fundraisers from all over the world. He writes a regular column for Third Sector magazine and regularly contributes to the specialist charity media around the world. Ian is also an in-demand speaker on the global fundraising conference circuit.

He has worked in the fundraising sector since 2001, as editor of the leading trade magazine Professional Fundraising, account director at specialist fundraising sector PR agency TurnerPR, and as head of communications at the Public Fundraising Regulatory Association.

Twitter: @IanMacQuillin; @RogareFTT.

Course Fees: 

£375 IoF Individual Member 

£440 Non- Individual Member 

If you require an invoice please ensure you book your place a minimum of two weeks before the start date of your course.

IoF Academy One and Two Day Open Course Booking Terms and Conditions.


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Further details and contact information

IoF Academy Team
Email: academy@institute-of-fundraising.org.uk
Telephone: 0207 840 1020

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