What is the Clore Fellowship

Primary tabs


What is the Clore Fellowship?

The Clore Fellowship is a programme of tailored leadership development for a cohort of exceptional leaders in the cultural sector.  

Each year we award circa 20 Fellowships to exceptional leaders from a range of areas of the cultural sector including the visual and performing arts, museums, libraries, archives and heritage, film and digital media, cultural policy and practice. The Fellowship Programme is for leaders who have ambition and vision, and can show clearly how they might take their leadership to the next level.

The Fellowship has a loose framework but it is individually tailored, adaptive and self-guided. The programme is learned, not taught and is experiential, grounded in practice, and underpinned by contemporary leadership theories and approaches. The programme is deeply reflective and involves spending time learning about yourself, considering the role of leadership in the wider sector and where and how your leadership will make an impact.  

The Clore Fellowship includes:

  • Two residential courses & 3 days of skills-based workshops in London (including travel and all accommodation, meals and refreshments) - you will work alongside facilitators, Clore Leadership staff, Associates and speakers, as well as your Fellowship cohort to explore learning about yourself and your leadership, as well as more about the skills and strategy of leadership. You will hear from a range of guest leaders and their leadership journeys, reflect and learn more about yourself, your leadership and how to explore your leadership potential. 
  • Climate Assembly - the opportunity to connect with leaders in the UK and internationally around climate emergency, action and collaboration. 
  • A 360° leadership profile - you will undertake a detailed leadership profile, with support to explore what that means for you and your leadership. 
  • A secondment - usually around 6 weeks in a UK-based cultural organisation, in a field different to your own. Here you have the opportunity to connect with a host organisation around a key project, stretching your leadership learning and muscles outside of your home area of practice. 
  • A development budget - up to £3,500 to spend on your own learning and associated costs (E.g. conferences, courses, study visits or books)
  • A bursary of £10,000 -  financial support for your time away from work necessary to undertake your Fellowship, paid to you or your employer (as appropriate). For UK/ Ireland Fellows only.
  • Support from a mentor or coach.
  • A provocation piece - Fellow-led research into a chosen leadership subject 
  • A collaborative enquiry project - working alongside other members of your cohort to explore a contemporary leadership learning question, with your enquiry findings presented at the second residential. 
  • Provision of an access budget for D/deaf or disabled and neurodivergent Fellows, or for those with caring responsibilities.
  • Opportunity to apply for a supervised research project funded through the Arts and Humanities Research Council, following completion of the Fellowship.  
The programme is truly an eye opening experience that changed the trajectory of my leadership journey in many aspects and is going to have a positive, strong and lasting impact for many years to come in my professional life.
Alex Tam
Centre for Research and Development in Visual Arts, Hong Kong Baptist University (Clore Fellow 15/16)
Why choose the Fellowship?

We are looking for leaders who are dynamic, strategic and collaborative; who possess a high degree of intellectual curiosity, creativity, integrity and emotional intelligence.

You will be entrepreneurial and driven to making a difference in your organisation, community of practice, sector and/or society through culture.

This adaptive programme is for leaders from across the cultural sector who are poised to take on a significant leadership challenge, to make a step change in their leadership careers and the cultural sector: perhaps you are about to take on a major project or executive leadership role, or are ready to develop your organisation. Whether working independently or as part of an institution, you will be able to demonstrate your aptitude and appetite for effecting significant change.

We aim to increase the diversity of leaders in arts and culture and particularly welcome applications from Black, Asian and ethnically diverse leaders and D/deaf and disabled leaders, who are currently under-represented in the sector.

Clore Fellows Network

The impact of Clore Leadership has been wide-ranging and Fellows have found many different environments in which to be leaders.

Some have founded new charities, businesses or are working independently; others have returned to their jobs with renewed confidence, added dynamism, more extensive networks and advanced skills; and yet others have moved into new jobs.

As a Clore Fellow, you become part of an extensive network of cultural leaders spread throughout the UK and beyond, from countries such as Canada, China, Egypt, India and the Middle East. The Clore Network of over 400 Fellows and 2000 Clore Leaders of our residential courses work across the cultural sector and are a constant source of inspiration, knowledge and expertise. We stay in touch with them regularly through a newsletter and an active Facebook group with occasional invitations to events and further masterclasses. 

One of the most powerful aspects of the Fellowship is the bond which participants develop with one another and which provides ongoing support throughout their career. Fellows continue to learn long after the Fellowship. Many organise development and training days, open events, and other opportunities for engagement with one another and the wider network. They reach out to the sector as speakers, contributors, mentors, or by developing independent leadership initiatives such as the Cultural Leadership Programme at Curve, Leicester; or Arts Think South Asia.

You’ll extend your knowledge and understanding of the wider cultural sector through dialogue, inquiry, study visits, conferences and meetings; and increase your skills and acumen through courses and individual training as part of your unique development plan.


To be eligible for a Fellowship, you should:

  • Have a minimum of seven years’ experience of professional or voluntary practice, and be able to demonstrate aptitude for leading and effecting significant change through your work. The period of seven years does not need to be consecutive.
  • Have an innovative approach, be open to learning and have the desire to develop as a cultural leader.
  • Be in a position to influence practice and/or policy and effect change in your organisation, sector and beyond, through your work as an artist or cultural professional.
  • Have significant experience of leading people, projects, organisations or practice either in a professionally paid or voluntary capacity in the cultural sector.
  • Be comfortable with managing budgets.
  • Demonstrate a deep commitment to, passion for and understanding of the cultural sector.
  • Meet the additional eligibility criteria for any specialist Fellowships applied for.
  • Have an understanding of the broader sector and wider context of culture.
  • Highly qualified candidates from other sectors may be considered providing they demonstrate a deep commitment to culture and to playing a leading role within it.
Want to find out more?

We recently hosted two Q&A sessions on Zoom, sharing some helpful tips and insights into the application process, including questions put to the team and some of our alumni. You can watch recordings of these sessions below, including the transcript. 

Clore Leadership Fellowship Q&A Recording (with BSL interpretation)

Clore Leadership Fellowship Q&A Transcript

Are you interested in applying for Arts Council Ireland or Creative Scotland Fellowships? In both these sessions for applicants, we will be talking about applying for these Individual Fellowships.

Thursday 2 February 2023 9.30 – 10.30am for Arts Council Ireland Fellowship

Thursday 2 February 2023 11.30 – 12.30pm for Creative Scotland Fellowship


Clore Leadership will continue to monitor the Covid-19 situation in the period up to the Fellowship residential dates.  Our residential planning incorporates consideration of how best to ensure a safe and inclusive learning space for our cohorts and staff team. Your health, wellbeing and quality of experience while on your residential is paramount to us. Full details of the Covid safe guidelines in place will be provided to you in advance of your residential.

How do I apply?


Total number of Clore Fellows
Number of applicants per place
Fellowship places available