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Foundation Board Seminar

Specialization Module for Successful Foundation Work
The Foundation Board Seminar is a targeted training course specifically meant for the highest foundation body and provides participants with the tools necessary for successful foundation work.


Icon of a Mortarboard – Degree
Certificate of Attendance "Foundation Board Expertise"
Rochester-Bern Executive Programs
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Course Start
June 6 – June 8, 2024
Icon of a Location Pin – Venue
University of Bern
Icon of a Calendar - Events
Full day
Thursday morning until Saturday afternoon
Icon of a Stopwatch – Duration
3 days
Icon of a Clock in front of a Schedule – Application Deadline
Application Deadline
April 30, 2024
Icon von drei Sternen – ECTS Punkte
Icon of a Speech Bubble – Language
Program Language
Icon of a Wallet – Program Fees
Program Fees
CHF 3,500

Your Benefits

Icon of a Desk With a Lamp – Professionalization

The increasing demands on foundation boards require targeted further training in the strategic management of foundations. The Rochester-Bern seminar provides expertise for competent action in the challenging foundation landscape and thus addresses the emerging need for professionalization of the highest foundation body. The seminar's main focus is on charitable foundations, with pension foundations as the secondary topic.

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University Level

The seminar is one of the first continuing education programs for foundation board members at the university level in Switzerland and awards participants ECTS credits from the University of Bern, as well as the "Foundation Board Expertise" certificate from the Rochester-Bern Executive Programs.

Icon of a Monitor with a Mortarboard – Application-Oriented
Practical and Application-oriented

Professors from the Rochester-Bern Executive Programs network provide the theoretical background, which is complemented by various practical sessions with experienced individuals from foundation in Switzerland. Guest speakers provide participants with practical tools for their own foundation work. In addition to the teaching blocks, the seminar offers sufficient opportunities for reflecting, exchanging ideas, and networking with other participants and lecturers.

Study Modules

The seminar provides valuable knowledge and skills for working on a foundation board and enables participants to exchange ideas and build their network in the Swiss foundation landscape.
Day 1 Foundation Context

The first day of the seminar covers current trends affecting the work of foundation boards and addresses the legal and corporate competences, rights and obligations, as well as the challenges in remunerating foundation board members. Participants will receive an introduction to legal and practical issues along the foundation life cycle.

Learning Objectives (selection)

  • Understand the Swiss foundation landscape and the various foundation types
  • Know the underlying legal framework of foundation board activities
  • Understand the basics of foundation formation and the legal framework
Day 2 Foundation Board Work

The second day of the seminar covers topics related to effective foundation work. Participants learn how to ensure the successful composition and management of the foundation board, recognize the importance of umbrella foundations, learn about taxation, address sustainability issues, and discuss the effects of their work on the foundation board.

Learning Objectives (selection)

  • Know the best practices of governance of foundations
  • Assess the role of umbrella foundations for the foundation landscape in Switzerland
  • Understand the basics of taxation in the context of foundations
Day 3 Foundation Funding

The module addresses the key elements for the successful financial management of the company by the board of directors.

Learning Objectives (selection)

  • Understand the benefits of systematic financial analysis
  • Know the instruments in the financial cockpit of the board of directors, the basics of financial planning and tax effects
  • Evaluate investment projects and financing methods

Program Details

Goals & Benefits

With the Foundation Board Seminar you professionalize your mandate activity. You will benefit from a cross-sector exchange and deepen your practical and theoretical know-how.

This university-based continuing education program focuses on the Swiss foundation landscape and ensures a transfer of knowledge for sustainable success.

Modules, Dates & Professors
Seminar Days
06.06. – 08.06.2024
Various professors and guest speakers from our pool

Please note that courses and dates can be subjects to change.

Applied Assignments

Following the seminar, participants work independently on an applied knowledge transfer task. On successful completion of the task, they earn 3 ECTS credits and the Foundation Board Expertise certificate from the Rochester-Bern Executive Program. The certificate of achievement is voluntary. Participants who complete the seminar without a certificate of achievement will receive confirmation of participation.

Target Audience/Requirements

The seminar is aimed at:

  • Current and former trustees of foundations who work in a legal capacity and currently hold a mandate or held one recently.
  • Alumni/ae of the CAS Board of Directors course.
  • Sur dossier candidates: Prospective foundation board members with relevant background and a letter of recommendation from a foundation board chairperson.
  • Board for Good Foundation scholarship recipients.
Program Fees

The fee for the three-day specialization seminar is CHF 3,500.

The fee includes seminar participation, electronic teaching materials, lunch on course days, a dinner on the first evening, refreshments during breaks, and confirmation of participation with recognition of ECTS credits. Participants must cover their accommodation expenses.


Members of our partners can benefit from discounts. Our partners are listed here.

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Step 1
Online Application

Download the application package (in German) and complete it electronically. If a signature is required, please print out the document and sign and scan it. You can then upload the completed documents to the application portal. The following documents are required for a complete application. In addition, all terms and conditions must be read and accepted.

  • Copy of ID or passport
  • Current curriculum vitae
  • Letter of motivation
  • Proof of credentials or letter of recommendation
  • Copy of the highest diploma
  • Additional information (see application package)

Once your complete application has been uploaded, we will contact you about dates for an interview.

Icon of two Speech Bubbles – Initial Meeting
Step 2
Personal Interview

A personal interview will be conducted to determine if your qualifications and specific needs match the program.

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Step 3
Admission Decision

The admission decision is made after the  interview.

What Our Clients Say

Portrait Picture of Katrina Egli, Alumna Foundation Board Seminar
Katrina Egli-Arnold
Foundation Board Member Pro Arte Domus

“The seminar made me aware of the extent to which the Swiss foundation landscape is undergoing change. In fulfilling our social responsibility, we foundation board members are increasingly required to act in an entrepreneurial manner to ensure efficient and effective foundation activities. A big thank you to the RoBe team and all the speakers for this valuable experience!”

Portrait Picture of Marc-André Pradervald, Alumnus Foundation Board Seminar
Marc-André Pradervand
Fundraising Consultant and Interim Manager, Chairman of the Baustei Foundation

“I recently took over the chair of a newly established foundation. The Foundation Board Seminar gave me a solid overview of the essential tasks and duties of a foundation board in a very practical way and had valuable tips for my role as chairman. I particularly appreciated the personal exchanges with the other participants.”

Portrait Picture of Jakob Dominique, Alumnus Foundation Board Seminar
Dominique Jakob
Founder and Owner of the "Center for Foundation Law" of the University of Zurich

“It cannot be overestimated how important it is for foundation board members to know the basics of law, decision-making channels, and governance. In this regard, it is essential to have solid theoretical and practical knowledge with which not only to fulfill the foundation board mandate but also to contribute to the foundation sector as a whole.”

Portrait Picture of Roland Heiniger, Alumnus Foundation Board Seminar
Roland Heiniger
Managing Director Vontobel Holding AG and President of the Foundation Board Schweizer Volksmusik und Volkskultur, President of the Board Mein Emmental AG

“I was constantly confronted with my commitment: What does this mean for me? In my function? How can I put this into practice? The final module paper was developed from the perspective of my responsibilities and I was able to put a lot of things into practice on a 1:1 basis. In addition, the exchange sharpened my view of my own commitment and opened up a valuable network.”

Portrait Picture of Hansruedi Scherer, Alumnus Foundation Board Seminar
Hansruedi Scherer
Partner of PPCmetrics AG

“The CAS Board of Directors and the Seminar Foundation Board ideally combine academic substance with practical experience, thus providing an optimal package for foundation members.”

Get in touch with us!

Do you have questions about the program? Our team is happy to answer them.

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