Adding to the Bricoleurs Toolbox

Brad and I are extremely excited to be taking the lead on GrantCraft as it enters this next phase of development. Both of us have been keen observers of GrantCraft since its inception ten years ago, and we are both great admirers of Jan Jaffe and the work she has put into GrantCraft over the years. It has always been my feeling that GrantCraft appeals to the ‘bricoleur’ in all of us: the part of our natures that enjoys tinkering and experimenting with the resources at hand to find solutions.

As Jan notes, both the Foundation Center and European Foundation Centre (EFC) are organisations already committed to collecting knowledge from practitioners. Yet producing new, useful products in the GrantCraft line will require us to seek out a different type of knowledge. GrantCraft works so well because it focuses on grantmakers’ tacit knowledge: that which is understood and gained from experiential learning, but which is not regularly expressed or discussed. Grantmakers are often not aware of how much knowledge they actually possess, or how valuable it can be for others; GrantCraft skillfully taps into this. In Europe and beyond there is a growing appetite for the sharing of such practical advice, and I believe that the EFC is well placed to introduce the robust GrantCraft repertoire, along with revised context-specific products, to a variety of new audiences.

It is my hope that we can play an important role in adding to practitioners’ ‘bricoleurs toolboxes’: the assortment of fundamental skills and expertise that can be mixed and matched. So while we realise we have some big shoes to fill following Jan’s departure, we are looking forward to the challenge and looking forward to learning from you. What is essential in your toolbox?