Culture Service - Flexible Fund 2022/23 - Diversity & Inclusion Fund Application Form

Closed 25 Jan 2023

Opened 8 Dec 2022


City of Edinburgh Council Flexible Fund: Diversity and Inclusion - Deadline for applications: Wednesday 25 January 2023 (23:59 GMT).

The City of Edinburgh Council officers overseeing the application process can be contacted via email or phone to assist with submissions. Further information about the fund, including officers’ contact details, can be found below.




Edinburgh has recently been recognised as the most diverse city in Scotland according to Scotland’s Census 2021.The Diversity and Inclusion Fund aims to ensure this diversity is encouraged, facilitated, and celebrated across the city as outlined in The City of Edinburgh Council’s Citywide Cultural Strategy 2023-2030. This resource offers an opportunity for exploration and innovation to ethnically diverse artists and creatives who wish to share their voices and celebrate their heritage, explore intercultural dialogue and provide spaces and experiences for diverse residents to engage with arts and culture by including different languages, forms of creative expression, and engagement models.

The Diversity and Inclusion Fund seeks to support the work and narratives of ethnically diverse artists and creatives which have been developed and delivered through multi-art form collaborations and partnerships. It reflects feedback from previous applicants, fund recipients and network members. With the aim of embedding and mainstreaming the work in mind, this fund supports greater visibility and recognition of projects designed and managed by ethnically diverse artists and creatives for the benefit of participants, audiences and the arts and culture industry at large. It seeks to invest in Edinburgh-based talent and promote the diversity of thought, ideas and expression rooted in cultural identities.

Edinburgh-based ethnically diverse artists and creatives are invited to apply for funding in partnership with other creative practitioners and arts and culture organisations to develop and deliver imaginative and/or experimental creative concepts that reflect their interpretation, experience and sharing of arts, culture and heritage.

The support offered by this fund is using positive action to promote equality as reflected in the Equality Act 2010. In the light of the Creative Scotland’s recognition of ‘a major gap in BAME-led arts in Scotland’, the City of Edinburgh Council identified ethnicity as one of protected characteristics that lead to disadvantage across all service areas, arts and culture being no exception. In response to continued feedback from creative practitioners based in Edinburgh which has highlighted a lack of diversity and representation in mainstream programming and cultural offering, this fund seeks to make inroads into addressing underrepresentation of ethnically diverse artists and creatives in our city.

Reflecting recommendations of the Desire Lines Report, the Flexible Fund aims to ‘invest in artists’ development, and support and sustain the local artistic community’ as well as ‘support greater partnership working across the arts and culture sector enabling it to flourish year-round.’ With that in mind, this fund seeks to support collaborative working between artists and other industry members across artforms and creative practices to encourage greater peer learning, cross-sector working and multi-artform development and production. Quoting Natalie Grant (2010, ‘Music and Collaboration’): ‘There are many elements that can affect an artistʼs work regardless of their location. Artists constantly work within their own particular knowledge base. Therefore, when artists from a variety of disciplines, countries and cultures create artistic works together, they not only collaborate with their art, but also bring together completely different sets of values, perspectives and experiences based on their own lives and environments. Similarly, artists can draw on ideas and skills from collaborative projects in their own solo work, and introduce these into further/future collaborations.’


Edinburgh, a world leading cultural capital, is home to an eclectic mix of diverse narratives, art forms, and creative practice. Our residents across the city should feel the benefit, the challenge and the inspiration this meeting of local and international talent brings and their diversity should be reflected in and connected to the programmes on offer.

This funding has been allocated as a result of the city’s Culture Plan to deliver wider access to Council cultural funding opportunities and continues the Council’s core role in ensuring Edinburgh is a city of creative opportunities. Our cultural activity and offer continues to be a crucial contribution to the city’s success as an exceptional place to live and work.

In line with the findings and recommendations of the City of Edinburgh Council Equality, Diversity and Rights Framework 2017-21: Interim Progress Report, 2017- 2019’, the Diversity & Inclusion Fund has been developed to ‘advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic,’ (in that context ethnicity other than Scottish/British White).

As stated in the Action Plan agreed at the Culture and Communities Committee Meeting on 18 June 2019, the City of Edinburgh Council is committed to promoting stronger collaboration, developing new partnerships and creating new funding streams for the culture sector in Edinburgh.


Grants will be awarded to projects that promote greater partnership and collaboration  between minority ethnic artists/practitioners, independent creatives and/or Edinburgh-based cultural organisations. Projects should reach, involve, benefit and engage ethnically diverse artists/creative practitioners and cultural organisations based in Edinburgh.

The fund is intended to support projects and activities, including development and delivery of creative work and cultural events, that utilise one or multiple art forms, such as visual and performing arts (music, dance, spoken word and theatre), film, digital arts, literature and poetry, to promote greater collaboration and partnerships between ethnically diverse artists and creatives, other independent practitioners and cultural organisations in Edinburgh.  Priority will be given to quality multi art form projects.


We invite applications from ethnically diverse artists and creatives and organisations which meet the following criteria:

  • they recognise the need for greater representation and visibility of ethnically diverse work and narratives in the arts, culture and heritage sector; 
  • they have a clear vision for their joint project, its outcomes and learning;
  • they present a mutually beneficial partnership / collaborative working model;
  • they commit to continuing and /or increasing engagement with groups and communities often underrepresented in the arts and culture sector.


Individuals and organisations wishing to apply for a grant from the Diversity and Inclusion Fund must be able to demonstrate how their project meets two or more of the following funding priorities:

  1. Meaningful ethnically diverse artist/practitioner lead involvement and direction in project development and delivery;
  2. Imaginative and/or experimental creative concept;
  3. Partnership/collaboration working - a City and Culture Plan funding priority; 
  4. Use of multi art forms within projects; 
  5. Planned demonstrable learning and / or impact from the project activity; and
  6. Consideration for multiple characteristics and identities often underrepresented in the arts and culture sector.

We will be assessing the likely impact of the proposed activity on greater visibility and representation of the ethnically diverse arts and culture and potential reach of outlined cultural activity across the city.

We want to see how you propose to use this funding and what you envisage the learning from the funded activity and / or the direct impact of that funding will be on direct and indirect project beneficiaries, including learning and development, engagement with diverse narratives and communities, representation of diverse voices in the arts and culture sector.

Our focus will be on what major difference this funding will make to the project (i.e. what wouldn’t happen without this support) at the proposed stage of its development and delivery.


A total budget of £100,000 is available offering grant awards of up to £5,000 to individuals and £10,000 to organisations for projects starting in the financial year 2022/23 and completed by the end of December 2024.

Please note that all project facilitators, artists, creatives, managers involved in the project delivery are expected to be remunerated as per industry rates. Only in special circumstances when project partners declare that they do not require to be paid for their work and their contribution towards the project delivery is in-kind they can be involved on a no-fee basis.  Links to industry rates, as recommended by industry bodies, are listed below:

Applicants should apply for the exact amount needed for their project and will not automatically be awarded the full amount of their application submission. The awards panel reserves the right to award an amount different to that submitted.

DEADLINE: Wednesday 25 January 2023 (23:59 GMT). Late applications will not be accepted.

Please note that the funding award for successful applications will be issued in one payment (100%) on receipt of a signed funding agreement.  You will be required to submit for approval, a project report on completion of project.  You will be advised w/b 6 February 2023 if your application has been successful by email.  Funding payments to successful applicants will to be made within 6-8 weeks from the date of notification of a successful funding application.


  • Projects must have an ethnically diverse lead artist / creative and take place within the City of Edinburgh boundary with Edinburgh-based partners.
  • Partnership working is a City and Culture Plan funding priority therefore applicants will be expected to place an emphasis on this in any submission. This can be both in cash and/or in kind.
  • Independent ethnically diverse artists and creatives registered as self-employed or sole traders are eligible to apply in partnership with other independent practitioners for awards of up to £5,000. The lead artists will be asked to provide their UTR number confirming their self-employment status.
  • A constituted organisation must be the lead project partner for the release of any grant award between £5,001 and £10,000.  The organisation will be asked to provide a copy of their constitution to the Council and where appropriate the organisation’s Memorandums & Articles.  Your financial accounting practices will need to meet as a minimum the essential elements and requirements of the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR).
  • A Council revenue-funded Strategic Partner organisation or Grouping cannot lead on an application and if they are in receipt of Strategic Partnership grant funding of more than £50,000, they cannot directly receive project grant funding.  They can, however, be involved as a partner in any application.  For example, a venue may act as host or a company provide in-kind support.  A list of CEC Strategic Partner organisations and Groupings can be found in the Related Documents section in the online application.
  • Only one application per partnership can be considered.
  • Those in receipt of the Diversity and Inclusion 2021/22 are eligible to apply as long as they present, or are part of, a new partnership/project for consideration. 

The Culture Plan vision is that “city partners work together to keep culture and creativity at the heart of Edinburgh’s success”.  Further information on the vision can be accessed through the Council’s Business Plan.


Application cannot be considered:

  • for projects already started or planned to start before the decision is made, unless it is the next stage of a previously completed phase of work;
  • if received after the deadline date; and
  • unless there is a suitable management/governance structure in place.

Funding cannot support:

  • Revenue costs or permanent posts;
  • Press events or launches;
  • Equipment items or capital projects;
  • Projects which primarily take place outside Edinburgh.


Please read these guidelines carefully.  Applications must be submitted using the application form, returned by the stated deadlines and signed by the applicant. Please contact Beata Skobodzinska 0131 529 4577 or Sandra Elgin 0131 529 6720 if you require advice on your application.

Before starting this application online, please download a blank PDF application form for your preview.  Please also download the Application Guidelines, the Council's Standard Conditions of Grant, and the Budget spreadsheet.  Links to the Council's Culture Plan, Business Plan and Privacy Notice are also available in the Related documents section.


Submitted application forms will be acknowledged via email. Applications will be considered by members of the awards panel, comprising of specialist independent advisors. All project proposals will be reviewed regarding the outlined creative concept, collaborative work model, envisaged learning/impact and budget planning.  The assessment panel will assess all eligible projects on a scale from 0 to 4 per following guidelines.

Score and Guidelines

0 = Response missing or unacceptable. No clear response to criteria in the submission

1 = Marginal response. The submission provides low level of confidence that the criteria would be delivered in a satisfactory way

2 = Acceptable response. The submission provides a moderate level of confidence that the criteria would be delivered in a satisfactory way

3 = Good response. The submission provides a good level of confidence that the criteria would be delivered.

4 = Excellent response. The submission provides a high level of confidence that the criteria would be delivered or exceeded.

The panel will meet within 2 weeks of the fund deadline, and you will be informed by email of the outcome within further 2 weeks of the meeting.


If successful, the project partners will be notified of the award recommendation for their acknowledgement. The funding award agreement reflecting the project proposal and any potential adjustment will be signed and the award release within 6-8 weeks from the date of the award notification.

The awardees will be expected to develop the project as indicated in their funding agreement and should any circumstances change, advise the Grant Officer of any major adjustments. All awardees are also expected to submit one final project delivery report as part of the terms and conditions of the funding award. The delivery report template will be sent along with the funding agreement.

Privacy Notice

To deliver Council services we need to collect, store, use, share and dispose of personal information. This is known as data processing.

When we collect personal data, we must tell you why we need it, and what we will do with it. This information is called a privacy notice.

The Privacy Notice link takes you directly to the City of Edinburgh Council’s privacy notice.  Here we explain how we process your personal information as a Council.


Once you have submitted your application form, please complete the Equal Opportunities Monitoring Form.

If you require this application in Braille, large print, audiotape or need to be provided with other access support such as scribing, please contact the Cultural Development on 

What happens next

Submitted application forms will be acknowledged via email. Applications will be considered by members of the awards panel, comprising ethnically diverse specialist independent advisors.

The panel will meet within 2 weeks of the fund deadline and you will be informed by email of the outcome within further 2 weeks of the meeting.

Once you have submitted my application form, please complete the Equal Opportunities Monitoring Form.

Privacy Notice

To deliver Council services we need to collect, store, use, share and dispose of personal information. This is known as data processing.

When we collect personal data, we must tell you why we need it, and what we will do with it. This information is called a privacy notice.

The Privacy Notice link (located in Related section below) takes you directly to the City of Edinburgh Council’s privacy notice.  Here we explain how we process your personal information as a Council.


  • Fund Information Session

    From 19 Dec 2022 at 13:00 to 19 Dec 2022 at 14:30

    Please register at to attend.


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