Trends4FI

Research the dynamics of donating artworks and art collections by charitable cultural organizations, and money laundering and tax evasion risks that come into play.

The Project

The Project

In this project you are asked to think exploratively and outside of the box.

You will zoom in on art philanthropy for the organization Trends4FI (Trends for Financial Investigation), a network facilitated by the Dutch tax and customs administration and its fiscal intelligence and investigation service (FIOD), which together aim to unite various governmental and non-governmental actors in the fight against money laundering and tax avoidance and evasion.
The “Art & Finance” group within the Trends4FI environment is interested in your analysis of the dynamics of donating (and/or lending and publicly displaying) artworks and art collections by charitable cultural organizations.

Artworks are symbols of class, taste, and distinction and thus constitute cultural capital that can be bought. Conversely, the art world has a history of courting power by exchanging cultural for economic capital. Art can have significant financial value, but the market value of artworks is difficult to estimate independently. For this reason, artworks are susceptible to strategically high or low appraisals.

But how exactly do such practices of appraisal and the malleability of the financial value of art figure in Dutch art philanthropy?
Are there specific money laundering and tax avoidance and evasion risks – for instance considering the apparent lack of transparent rules and regulations for appraisals internationally, or when seen against the backdrop of a global business of hiding and obscuring wealth through creative legal technologies of (anonymous) ownership and control that include shell companies, trust funds, and foundations?
And how does the emerging phenomenon of establishing private art museums in the Netherlands figure in this context, if at all?

Research-oriented

In this project, the focus is on “discovering something new”

The Client

The Client

Trends4FI is short for Trends for Financial Investigation. It is a network organization facilitated by the Dutch tax and customs administration and its fiscal intelligence and investigation service (FIOD), which together aim to unite various governmental and non-governmental actors in the fight against money laundering and tax avoidance and evasion. Trends4FI revolves around so called trend groups, one of which focusses on the field of “Art & Finance.” Trend groups have the purpose to discuss emerging phenomena and to signal fraud risks in their respective fields of practice. The “Art & Finance” group connects government agencies such as the police, the ministry of justice, and the ministry of education and culture, banks and financial institutions, non-governmental organizations, private and corporate businesses, academics, and other relevant actors.

Formal Client

The formal client provides guidance and supports the team with feedback, but is not actively involved in project execution.