PEXforum 2021

On 27-28 January PEXforum was co-hosted by Dafne and Ariadne and facilitated by SenseTribe. This online conference will bring together 150+ leaders and experts from more than 60 national, regional and thematic philanthropy support organisations over two half days in an interactive, community-driven and inspiring format.

pexforum 2021 poster

Who is the PEXforum for?

PEXforum will bring together academics, data, advocacy and communications experts in the field of European philanthropy, social innovators, leaders, board and team members  of national, regional and thematic philanthropy networks, representatives of foundations based in more than 30 European countries. While some have been part of the community, others will join PEXforum for the first time.


We live in times of unprecedented challenges and crises. The outbreak of coronavirus has demonstrated how fragile our societies are and how much we are in need of solidarity and collective action. Social justice, inclusive economies, just and equitable societies where all can participate and prosper and have a voice, from the most marginalised to the most privileged, are all high on the agenda as we enter 2021. The need for collaboration has accelerated significantly over the past 10 months. Therefore PEXforum 2021 is the place for all of us to advance our collective approach for building a resilient, inclusive and sustainable Europe.

The PEXforum 2021 is a unique opportunity for you, your team and your board members to be part of a thriving community and

  • to meet your peers in an inspirational setting that invites for building your network around personal connections and professional exchange
  • to experience collectively how philanthropy can be vital for a resilient, inclusive and sustainable Europe
  • to explore the potential for collaboration and joint leadership for an independent and courageous philanthropic sector that can be a catalyst for a just and equitable society


PEXforum is a space for learning, collective reflection and joint action. It is organised in a highly interactive and community-driven way and will offer relevant content and contacts as well as methodologies to inspire your own work. By joining the PEXforum, you are joining a growing community in the field of European philanthropy where you can share your ideas, projects and aspirations and find allies.

The PEXforum 2021 provides a unique space to create a European philanthropy identity and find common ground to jointly advance the philanthropy ecosystem in a changing world. Through professionally facilitated and highly interactive sessions centred around (a) cross-cutting thematic approaches including the 7 PEXprojects, (b) networking moments as well as facilitated peer exchange conversations and (c) collective foresight exercise to spark enhanced future collaboration between all of us.


The programme of the event is designed in the spirit of participants joining for the entire flow as the elements are building up throughout the programme. Interactive sessions will also provide room for networking and community building.

Wednesday, 27 January 2021

14:00 – 14:45 CET | Opening

Self & group connection”: feel part of the PEXcommunity and experience PEXforum 2021 at all levels: co-creating, trust building, learning and getting inspired.

Facilitated by Vasco Gaspar, author, speaker and facilitator in the fields of Awareness-Based Human Flourishing and Self-Leadership, inspiring change and transformation in organizations worldwide for a more human and compassionate world.

14:45 – 15.00 CET | Inspirational keynote

from Michael O’Flaherty, Director of the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights, interviewed by Julie Broome, Director of Ariadne.

15:00 – 16:30 CET | Session #1 : “European Philanthropy Identity”

We will spell out collectively the key values that unite European philanthropy and make it unique in addressing rising social inequalities in times of the pandemic and the climate crisis. 

  • The value of storytelling for European philanthropy: Introduction and guidelines on the value of storytelling followed by three stories on PEX, European philanhtropy identity and social justice.
  • We invite you to bring your own ideas and questions to explore them jointly in then interactive open space session allowing us to discuss our common understanding of a “European philanthropy identity”.

Invited speakers:

16:30 – 17:00 CET | Break

17:00 – 18:45 CET | Session #2: “Cross-cutting Themes in Philanthropy”

Collective learning space to mainstream cross-cutting issues: based on the example of existing PEXprojects, we will identify the potential for connecting the project with emerging themes and questions of our joint work. This will lead to a deeper understanding of how we can foster collaboration in the future to enhance the public value of European philanthropy and our own efficiency.

  • Nutshell talks on “PEXprojects”: 2 minutes vision sharing per project.

[including PEXprojects on advocacy, climate, data, gender, NextPhilanthropy, racial justice and legitimacy of philanthropy]

  • Invitation to an open space session to explore the commonalities of the broader project objectives as practical collaboration approaches.

18:45 CET | PEX Apero “Meet your peers in an informal setting”

Thursday, 28 January 2021

10:00 – 10:30 CET | Opening

Connecting Day 1 & Day 2 and introducing you to the practice of participatory leadership that prioritises diversity, helps us harness and build on collective intelligence.

10:30 – 12:00 CET | Session #3: “The Future of Philanthropy”

Stimulated by a disruptive keynote on the future of philanthropy, we will reflect on how philanthropy in today’s world can be innovative and make a difference and how we – the PEXcommunity – can inspire philanthropy to be more ambitious.

  • Disruptive keynote “Foresight on philanthropy and social innovation
  • Invitation to join an interactive world café session to discuss in the context of the anticipated future: (a) “How can philanthropy make a difference?” and (b) “How can we inspire philanthropy to be more ambitious?”

Disruptive keynote speaker: Geoff Mulgan, Professor of Collective Intelligence, Public Policy and Social Innovation at University College London, UCL.

12:00 – 12:45 CET |Break

12:45 – 14:30 CET | ProAction Café: “Tangible Collaboration”

This is the moment for all of us to “live up to our vision” and come up with concrete ideas for collaboration across the PEXcommunity and beyond “for a sustainable and just Europe”.

  • Working in small groups towards tangible collaboration in a facilitated format. 

Closing PEXforum2021 with an artistic summary & collective outlook for the PEXcommunity.

Artistic harvesting: Stien Michiels, writer, poet, performer, voice-over, singer-songwriter and much more…


PEXforum2020 resulted in the creation of PEXprojects focusing on climate, gender, Next Philanthropy, philanthropy advocacy, philanthropy insight and data insights. PEXmagazine and PEXnews were also launched consequently to the first PEXforum.

Read PEXmagazine here.

Subscribe to and read the latest issue of PEXnews here.

Watch the PEXforum 2020 video report here: