This is the ethical code of ONS FONDS. In this document the members of ONS FONDS establish the basis for the trial-setup, which we will run during the 2018 – 2019 season.

The ethical code has four parts, required for the test setup: the starting-points of ONS FONDS; the procedure of the test set-up; requirements for those who apply to ONS FONDS; and suggestions for the selection committee of ONS FONDS.


Part 1: starting-points

ONS FONDS is a fund with more than 250 members, working in the performing arts. ONS FONDS is a laboratory for new practices in the distribution of subsidies, an experimental forerunner for future reforms. In the season of 2018-2019, ONS FONDS organizes a first trial set-up, in which it will grant the money raised by its members to one or more projects, proposed by its members.



Increasingly, both artists and art institutions are talking about the lack of connection between the function of their arts practice and the way it is funded by governmental bodies.

ONS FONDS wants to offer an alternative. Away from the vicious circle of over-regulation and juridification that creates an illusion of measurability and objectivity, we want to move towards a system based on trust. A system that puts artistic content at the center of its deliberations, resulting in sharp funding decisions.


With this trial of ONS FONDS, we want to answer questions such as: What does it mean to apply without a format? How far can we take deregulation? What instruments does a committee need to come to a good and balanced assessment? What are basic principles for our ethics code?

ONS FONDS is open to all professionals in the performing arts. As a member, you can apply for funding and become a part of the decision-making process: peer-to-peer, with shared responsibilities and as few rules as possible.



ONS FONDS consists of members who work in the performing arts. To become a member you must register and pay fifty euros. If you have a small means you can use a solidarity membership, which means that a more prosperous member will pay for your membership .


Part 2: Our call

ONS FONDS calls on its members to submit an application for an artistic project. As a member you can submit an application, in part or for the entire amount that ONS FONDS has available for the trial-setup: 12.000 euro.


From the pool of applications a committee of 13 members of ONS FONDS chooses one or more projects to receive support. There is no strict format for the application with ONS FONDS. We do ask the applicants to answer the following two questions:


  • What do you need for what?
  • How does this benefit art or artists?


How the applicant answers this, using which media and in what length, or for what the application is for, we leave open.

Participating in the test setup means that you take part in an experiment. We want to investigate how a fund based on trust, peer-to-peer discussions, and as few rules as possible functions. We do not yet know how it will work. We work from a place of trust, that both applicants and the committee are acting in good faith. There will always be careful handling of requests. Because of transparency and discussions within the trial-setup, members will get access to the applications.

ONS FONDS accepts applications for funding until November 1st, 2018. Go to www.onsfonds.com to submit your application. The selection committee will answer the applicants  before February 1st.

If you have any issues with the registration form, you can always email your application to info@onsfonds.com


Part 3: The Selection Committee of ONS FONDS

An important role within the first trial set-up is reserved for the selection committee of ONS FONDS. The committee consists of 13 members, which are drawn by lottery from the member base of ONS FONDS. A helping hand, for which a call will be distributed among the members of ONS FONDS, will support the committee in practical matters. The call closes November 1th, after which the committee soon meets to begin its task and to decide what is needed for this.

We want to give the committee a number of tools to carry out its task. At the same time, it is up to the committee to decide how they want to proceed, what shape their task will take and what is required for this. The following is therefore a step-by-step plan that the committee can follow, including two lists of questions for the committee to consider during the process.

We would like to inform the committee that there are two sides to the work of ONS FONDS: first, choosing one or more projects to support and second, finding alternative methods for selection. The experiences of the committee, the problems the members face during the trial, and the discussions that arise are valuable for the continual development of ONS FONDS. These will be shared with all the members of ONS FONDS.

The proposed step-by-step plan for the committee:

Note:  The committee can decide how many meetings or how much time they want to take to complete these steps. By  February 1st, 2019 the committee must make a decision.

  1. The committee makes an inventory of applications submitted.
  2. The committee thinks about their composition  in relation to selection.
  3. The committee determines how much time it will take to assess the applications and prepares a timetable.
  4. The committee determines a method to select one or more projects to receive support by ONS FONDS.
  5. The committee starts the selection process.
  6. If there is a need, either from the committee or the applicants, they will contact each other.
  7. The committee finalizes the selection process.
  8. The committee proposes to the members how and when the approved funding will be directed to the chosen projects.
  9. The committee documents its process and shares this with the members of ONS FONDS. There are two important components: a motivation for their choices to the submitters and a report of the process to the members of ONS FONDS.
  10. The committee reflects on the process together with all members of ONS FONDS.

A first series of questions:

  • How do we deal with trust?
  • How do we deal with transparency?
  • How do we deal with subjectivity?

A second series of questions:

  • What do you need and for what?
  • How does this benefit art or artists?

Before December 15th, the committee must provide some feedback to the members of ONS FONDS, in which they inform about their time schedule, method, and process. Before the February 1st, the results of the first trial-setup must be announced to the members of ONS FONDS.

The helping hand does not participate in the meetings of the committee. The helping hand will be responsible for the following:

  • The helping hand ensures that all committee members confirm a date for the first meeting.
  • The helping hand arranges a location for the meetings of the committee.
  • The helping hand arranges for coffee and tea for the meetings of the committee.

A call for the helping hand’s role will be distributed to the members of ONS FONDS. In principle, this function is carried out on a voluntary basis.


Part 4:  Procedure of the Trial-Setup


– September 15, 2018 Our Call goes out

– September 15, 2018 the selection committee is drawn from the member base of ONS FUNDS

– November 1st,  2018 Our Call closes

– After November 1st the admission of new members will be temporarily stopped.

– The committee meets asap to make an inventory of the applications and to determine how they want to work.

– December 15, 2018, the selection commission will report back to members

– February 1st, 2019, the selection commission has made its choice

– March 15, the committee with all other members of ONS FONDS relfects on the process.

Requirements for applicants

To submit an application to ONS FONDS you must:

– Be a member of ONS FONDS (http://www.onsfonds.com/en/become-a-member/)

– Fill in the application form at www.onsfonds.com/aanvragen


Preconditions of the committee

– The selection committee consists of 13 members.

– The 13 members for the selection committee are drawn from the entire membership

– If necessary, budget from the general funding pool can be made available to the selection committee. On the meeting of December 15, the committee informs the members why and how they want to make use of these funds and how much is required.


Together searching for a different subsidy system for Dutch performing arts!