The University of California Institute for Research in the Arts supports embedded arts research through critical exchange

Grantmakers in the Arts 2011 Conference: Embracing the Velocity of Change

Sunday, October 9 – Wednesday, October 12
Fairmont Hotel
950 Mason Street
San Francisco, California, 94108

Each year, Grantmakers in the Arts invites funders from across the country to pause from our daily routines, assess the state of the field, and share emerging research and best practices. As we immersed ourselves this year in the conference planning process, one thing became quickly apparent: Whichever direction we looked, things were changing, and they were changing faster and more frequently than ever before. Like it or not, we’re not going to escape it. We ignore it at our peril, so our best option is to embrace it and move forward.

Three broad interlocking themes emerged from this planning: changing demographics, changing technology, and changing understanding of arts and social justice.

San Francisco and the greater Bay Area provide the ideal landscape and resources for our exploration of these themes. It is no secret that California is the bellwether of demographic change, and new immigrant populations and cultures further enhance this rich mix of peoples and traditions. We have deep roots in social justice, progressive activism, and innovation. The area is home to the one of the greatest concentrations of arts organizations per capita and the highest arts participation rates in the country.

We listened to your suggestions and used them to shape our conference agenda. More than half the presentations come from GIA members. Additional input from committees on technology, support for individual artists, arts and social justice, and arts education played a large role in developing content. In response to members’ ideas on increasing participatory programming, we devoted a large number of session slots to “salons” designed to address topics through interactive conversation, rather than traditional panels.

At the root of all support for arts and culture, is the work of the individual artist. In this conference you will find artists as the majority of keynote presenters, artists in breakout sessions and leading salons, artists both developing and participating in preconferences, and artists featured in a special conference edition of the GIA Reader.

Two preconferences are offered this year. The first preconference focuses on support for Individual Artists and Art and Social Justice, and explores the ways artists are changing the world, as well as new ways we can support that work. A second preconference takes advantage of our proximity to Silicon Valley by examining the intersection of Art and Technology.

GIA membership comprises a wide diversity of funders with markedly different priorities, strategies, and methods. The conference themes of changing demographics, technology, and social justice touch on all our grantmaking work. In turn, we challenge you to take a look at the conference schedule and consider choices outside of your traditional comfort zone so you might experience something new. I guarantee you won’t be disappointed.

Looking forward to seeing you in San Francisco!

Conference Eligibility

Conference attendance is only open to GIA members, as well as staff and trustees of organizations that are eligible for GIA membership. These include private, community, corporate, and family foundations; public sector grantmakers; regranting organizations whose primary purpose is arts grantmaking; and individual donors who give through eligible organizations. Membership is not required for conference attendance.

If you have questions about eligibility, please call GIA: (206) 624-2312.

Conference Location

The Fairmont San Francisco
950 Mason Street
San Francisco, CA 94108

Conference rate at the Fairmont San Francisco is $199.00.
Make your reservations at the Fairmont Hotel website or by calling 1 (800) 441-1414.

Registration Rates

Early Registration Rates (Payment received BY August 31, 2011)

GIA Members, first individual from organization $535
GIA Members, additional individuals from organization $450
Non-Members $675
Single Day Rate $300


Regular Registration Rates (Payment received ON or AFTER September 1, 2011)

GIA Members $585
Non-Members $725
Single Day Rate $300
All Preconferences, GIA Members & Non-members $175


Guest Fee

Guest fees are $100. The guest fee permits an individual accompanying a conference registrant to attend these social events:

  • Sunday opening reception
  • Monday night dine-arounds
  • Tuesday night party at the Oakland Museum of California

Please note that all other conference events are not open to guests.


Cancellation Policy

Click here to log into your registration profile if you wish to cancel or make changes to your registration.

Refunds for cancellations will be processed as follows:

  • Cancellations made prior to September 1, 2011: refund of 90% of registration paid.
  • Cancellations made from September 2-20, 2011: refund of 70% of registration paid.
  • After September 20, 2011, conference fees are non-refundable.


A Brief Word on Fundraising Ethics

To preserve the capacity for open discussion, all attendees must refrain from fundraising or solicitation. Organizations that solicit funds are expected to be represented only by individuals whose roles involve programming and/or policy, and not by fundraising or development staff.


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