Vision and Mission


A fair, healthy, sustainable and vibrant Australia


Honour the legacy of founder and benefactor, Sir Ian Potter, and his commitment that the Foundation make a difference to Australia.

Maintain a tradition of encouraging excellence and enabling innovation to facilitate positive social change, and develop Australia’s creativity and capacity as a nation.

Support outstanding charitable organisations and invest in Australia’s innovative and creative people.

About the Foundation

Based in Melbourne, the Foundation makes grants nationally to support charitable organisations working to benefit the community across a wide range of sectors and endeavours. Grants are made through eight program areas which reflect Sir Ian’s interest in the arts, and his visionary approach to issues including the environment, science, medical research, education and community wellbeing.

Through its grants, the Foundation seeks to invest in Australia’s intellectual capital, encouraging excellence and supporting Australia’s talent: the visionaries, social entrepreneurs, scientists, academics and researchers, artists and teachers, and those who dedicate themselves to bettering our communities for the benefit of all.

Grants are made through program areas that reflect Sir Ian's interest in the arts, and his visionary approach to issues concerning the environment, science, medical research, education and community wellbeing.

In 2015-16 the Foundation's Board decided to separate Major Grants within its grantmaking program. Through the Major Grants stream, the Foundation seeks to fund iconic or significant projects in nominated areas. These projects are by invitation only, with select applications considered once a year by the Foundation's Board of Governors.

Since 1964, The Ian Potter Foundation has contributed over $355 million to thousands of projects, both large and small. Led by its Board of Governors, the Foundation has a strong track record of funding projects that respond decisively to key issues and develop our creativity and capacity as a nation.

The Foundations largest grants include $15 million in 2000 towards the establishment of the National Gallery of Victoria’s Gallery of Australian Art in Federation Square; $15 million to the Peter MacCallum Cancer Foundation towards the Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Project in 2012; $10 million to the State Library of Victoria for the restoration of Queen's Hall in 2015; $8 million to The Australian Ballet in 2010. In late 2020, the Foundation committed $20 million towards the establishment of the National Gallery of Victoria's newest gallery of contemporary art and design, NGV Contemporary to encourage further philanthropic and community donations.


Support Australia's most innovative projects through a donation to The Ian Potter Foundation. Your donation will support projects that address areas of particular need or opportunity, managed by credible organisations with solid track records in their particular fields.

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