Trustees Annual Report for the year ended 5 April 2019

Objects and activities of the charity

The purposes of the charity as set out in its governing document

The objects of the charity are to support and promote studies of federal government whether within or among states, including studies of processes that may lead to the establishment of such government, and to support or promote education and dissemination of knowledge of these subjects.

Administration concerning the main activities undertaken in relation to those purposes during the year

The Trustees meet or communicate electronically to decide on all matters involving the government of the Trust including instructions to the Trust’s investment managers and the approval of grants for new projects, except where the Trustees from time to time delegate such decisions to two or more Trustees in committee as set out in the Trust Deed.

The main activities undertaken during the year to further the charity’s purposes for the public benefit

The projects supported in 2018-2019 included an examination of Central Banks in Federal Systems which led to the publication of a book with that title. In 2018 another book was published entitled¬† Restructuring the European State: European Integration and State Reform, which had received significant support from the Trust. Funding continued for Exploring and Explaining Devolution in Europe, 1815-2015 and this will continue in 2019-2020 with the presentation of the project’s result. Cooperation with the Universities Association of Contemporary European Studies continued as did the long-standing link with the University of Kent where the Trust supported a highly successful conference in December 2018 on The Spirit of Europe:Federalism, personalism and subsidiarity.

A workshop on External Relations and Federalism in the post-Brexit European Union was supported by the Trust and took place at the University of Strathclyde in September 2018. It is expected that it will lead to publication in a special edition of a journal.

The Trust was founded and funded by John Pinder and after his death it was decided to allocate funds to sort and classify the archive of his papers and this was duly accomplished during the year. This archive is now held and is available for researchers at the European University Institute, Fiesole, Italy.

The Trust also devoted a modest sum toward developing a link with an American centre of constitutional studies which, it is hoped, will lead to a joint conference in the future.

The charity’s strategies for achieving its aims and objectives in the future

The Trustees have agreed to enable the Trust to undertake its activities from income while accepting that, exceptionally, there may be a project which would require a dip into capital. The Trust will continue to explore fund-raising opportunities.

Grant-making policies and how these contributed to the achievement of the charity’s aims and objectives during the year

During the year the Trust revised its framework for the consideration of applications. Eligibility is restricted to projects concerned with the studies of federal elements in the process of devolution within the United Kingdom and within the institutions and competences of the European Union as well as studies relating to federalism in the wider world. All applications are reviewed by the Trustees in the light of funding criteria. Successful applicants are required to keep the Trustees informed of progress against targets and within the budgetary constraints.

The difference the charity’s performance during the year has made to the beneficiaries of the charity and to wider society

Grants made have facilitated scholarly publications and enabled the organisation of conferences and workshops exploring the aspects of federalism set out in the charity’s objectives

Investment performance against the investment objectives

The year saw some volatility in the markets. The Chair, Honorary Treasurer and Honorary Secretary meet regularly with a representative of the investment managers W H Ireland. They and the other Trustees are very satisfied with the performance of W H Ireland and are confident that the investment strategies are securing the future of the Trust.

Structure, governance and management of the charity

The Trust has a strong board of Trustees but is continuing to seek new Trustees to reinforce its administrative and academic skills.

The methods used to recruit and appoint new charity Trustees

New Trustees are sought through recommendations and external contacts and also by a notice on the Trust’s website.

The policies and procedures for the induction and training of new Trustees

Trustees are appointed on the basis of the knowledge and experience of federal systems but also enthusiasm and skills relevant to the management of a specialist Trust.

Terry Bishop
Chair of Trustees
June 2019

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