Tag Archives: nonprofit

Do Volunteers Intend to Become Social Entrepreneurs? The Influence of Pro-Social Behavior on Social Entrepreneurial Intentions

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. This article examines the influence of pro-social behavior on social entrepreneurial intentions (SEI). Drawing on theory of planned behavior, entrepreneurship, and behavioral psychology literatures, we examine the influence of volunteers’ traits and behavior on SEI. Our research adds two unexplored antecedents to previous studies, volunteers’ altruism, and religion. From a sample of 423 volunteers, our model shows that self-efficacy, perceived social support, opportunity recognition, and altruism, influence volunteers’ SEI, while moral obligation, religion, and empathy were not significant. Thus, without entrepreneurial characteristics such as self-efficacy and opportunity recognition, volunteers are unlikely to engage in social entrepreneurship. Given that altruism can be triggered by contrasting drivers (e.g., self-interest or selflessness), these differences open up a new venue for further studies on volunteers’ traits and SEI. We also suggest that it will be critical to further address the effect of contextual factors on the role of empathy and moral obligation.

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Governance Arrangements of Cross-Sector Collaboration and Its Effectiveness

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. Leaders’ perceptions of the effectiveness of their organization’s collaborations are critical as they determine current and future collaboration. This article examines perceived collaboration effectiveness—the extent to which targeted goals are achieved—based on an organization’s role in that collaboration’s governance arrangements (initiation, funding, coordination, and decision-making). Findings suggest that governance arrangements have modest association with perceived effectiveness of collaborations between nonprofits and local governments in Lebanon. Perceived effectiveness increases when an organization is directly engaged in coordinating the collaboration’s work, activities, resources, and partners, but decreases when an organization has the responsibility for decision-making. Perceived effectiveness also appears to be related to trust, relationship effectiveness, service category, and the organization’s sector.

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Does NGO Origin Influence Moral Judgment? A Study of the Attitudes of Algerian Participants Toward Foreign NGOs

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. Building on previous literature on corporate behavior, we examine the impact of an nongovernmental organization’s (NGO) foreign status on the moral judgment of its actions in a host country. Individuals in Algeria (N = 450) rated the ethicality of analogous ethical and unethical actions of domestic (Algerian) and foreign NGOs (European). For ethical actions, a foreign NGO was considered less positively than a local NGO for two scenarios out of three. For unethical actions, a foreign NGO was judged more severely in one scenario only. These results suggest that foreign status can influence moral judgment in a way that is consistent with liability-of-foreignness effect predictions. A foreign-sounding denomination can put an NGO at a relative disadvantage compared with its domestic counterpart. Consequently, the denomination choice should be carefully examined.

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Social Expectations for Charitable Giving in China

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. The rapid rise of philanthropy in China has motivated extensive research on why people make charitable donations as a personal decision, but few studies have explored the social dimension of these decisions. We propose that the legacy of government welfare provision and the culture of trust have led Chinese citizens to form different expectations for others in philanthropic situations. Our survey results point to some interesting asymmetries: Generalized trust and institutional trust toward local governments inflate people’s expectation for philanthropic contributions from others, whereas particularized trust and trust toward the central government reduce it. Also, Chinese citizens expect government employees to make larger contributions, but they don’t expect charities with government backing to receive correspondingly larger donations. We conclude with some observations on how the unique pattern of social expectation may shape the future of Chinese philanthropy.

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An Investigation of Factors Influencing Environmental Volunteering Leadership and Participation Behaviors

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. Volunteers play critical roles in leading the activities of environmental organizations seeking to address the environmental crisis. Despite their importance, we know little about the factors that motivate individuals to engage in different environmental volunteer behaviors. Drawing on an extended Theory of Planned Behavior model, this study surveyed 259 experienced environmental volunteers who had participated in a range of environmental volunteer “leadership” and “participation” (i.e., nonleadership) behaviors to identify factors associated with these behaviors. Findings indicate that higher self-efficacy beliefs about specific leadership tasks, and higher past participation in participation behaviors, were significant predictors of engaging in more leadership behaviors. Higher self-efficacy and stronger identification as an environmental volunteer also predicted increased participation behaviors, as well as a younger age. Qualitative analysis of open-ended responses highlighted the importance of organizational factors such as training opportunities and receiving support and appreciation from the group in building leaders’ self-efficacy.

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Assessing the State of the U.S. Nonprofit Sector: What Indicators Should We Use?

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. This research note identifies seven key dimensions of the nonprofit sector that nonprofit stakeholders want to monitor to assess the sector’s condition, including financial resources; human resources; the diversity of nonprofit boards, staff, and clients; the impact of the nonprofit sector; advocacy activity; ethical and legal behavior; and the existence of a supportive environment. The article then describes current measures of these dimensions, noting the shortcomings of many of these measures. Two government data sources, the National Income and Product Accounts (NIPAs) and the Current Population Survey (CPS), are highlighted that contain timely information about the nonprofit sector but which, to date, have been underutilized by sector stakeholders. Next, the article describes the picture of the nonprofit sector that emerges from the relevant measures before concluding with discussion of further work needed to improve measurement of the sector.

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Using Conditional Inference Trees to (Re)Explore Nonprofit Board Composition

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. This Research Note introduces nonprofit scholars to the contemporary analytical tool of conditional inference trees as a means to shed more light on the institutional forces behind the changing composition of nonprofit boards of trustees. Revisiting the data of the Six-Cities Cultures of Trusteeship Project, this note illustrates the illuminating power of conditional inference trees for analyzing data (particularly categorical data), not well served by significance testing. Applying these popular models adds depth, nuance, and increased clarity to some of the original findings from the Six-Cities research project. This empirical case serves as a how-to for future researchers hoping to more flexibly model the relative impact of institutional (and other) variables on nonprofit organization structures, as well as expand their methodological toolkit when dealing with all sorts of regression problems.

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The Social Meanings of the Third Sector: How Action and Purpose Shape Everyday Understandings of “Nonprofit”

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. How do nonspecialists of nonprofit practice, law, and scholarship conceptualize the third sector? This article explores the everyday meanings of nonprofit organization and action empirically by reporting on a survey-based exercise in which research participants coded statements describing qualitatively different interactions between various types of entities. The survey, drawing on Crawford and Ostrom’s grammar of institutions, allows for an examination of how lay observers make sense of the sectoral boundaries that occupy specialists’ attention. We find that research participants are less prone to code interactions consistently with the nominal sectors of the organizations presented to them and more inclined to code the interactions based on the types of actions organizations take and their rationale for those actions. We argue that understanding the everyday meaning of nonprofit has important implications for theory and practice.

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Governing for Whom? The Link Between Representative Governance and Segregation in North Carolina’s Charter Schools

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. Market-based reforms have become pervasive in the public sector, generating a vigorous debate about whether they promote public goals like effectiveness, efficiency, and equity. Nonprofit organizations are not only instrumental in the market for public services but also play important representative roles in democratic society. This article uses Guo and Musso’s theory of representative governance to examine how representation and participation in nonprofit governance influence representational outcomes in marketized environments. Leveraging the conflicting interests that nonprofit charter schools face in a geographic region marked by segregation, this article examines whether a nonprofit charter school’s representative capacity improves representational outcomes. Findings suggest that, on average, charter schools in the sample employed few mechanisms to increase representative capacity and that lower descriptive representation was linked to segregating outcomes rather than representational outcomes.

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Nonprofit Segregation: The Exclusion and Impact of White Nonprofit Networks

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. Nonprofits in cities often exist in segregated contexts in which leadership in high-capacity nonprofits reflects the whiteness of surrounding suburbs while leadership in grassroots nonprofits reflects the makeup of residency (low-income people of color). We build upon a small but burgeoning literature that uses critical race theory to better understand whiteness and segregation in the nonprofit sector. Using ethnographic data in Camden, New Jersey (NJ), we identify three key emergent findings on the impact of a segregated nonprofit sector: (a) the sector’s segregation reflects regional, residential segregation; (b) White, suburban overrepresentation in high-capacity nonprofits leads to a defense of White, suburban interests; and (c) these dynamics contribute to economic segregation within the sector. In our conclusion, we lay out a wider theoretical discussion of how these factors are interrelated.

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Engagement in Civil Society and Different Forms of Social Trust in the Aftermath of the European Refugee Crisis

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. This study examines the extent to which engagement within civil society relates to various forms of social trust among residents in local communities that received varying shares of asylum seekers during the European refugee crisis of 2015 to 2017. The study is based on a representative survey collected from individuals within 36 local Swedish communities that received very different shares of asylum seekers. The result suggests that engagement in civil society organizations moderates community trust under conditions of increased diversity. Outgroup trust varies with the share of asylum seekers only among those not involved in civil society. The results also suggest that involvement in civil society does not moderate generalized trust if the share of asylum seeker varies.

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The Evolution of the Nonprofit Research Field: An Emerging Scholar Perspective

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. This study takes an emerging scholar perspective to reflect critically on the evolution of the nonprofit research field, applying a mixed-methods design. Study 1 evaluated the evolution of nonprofit research through comparing the topics, theories, and methods in emerging nonprofit scholars’ dissertations (n = 3,023) to that of emerging scholars’ publications in nonprofit journals (n = 390). Study 2 examined through a survey of emerging nonprofit scholars (n = 141) how forces operating within the academic system influence scholars’ early career research. Results from Study 1 document a decreasing diversity in the body of scholarship from dissertations to journal articles and Study 2 highlights challenges experienced in an early career stage. The findings call for future reflection on the level of diversity, both in terms of research approaches and the composition of our scholarly community. Maintaining diversity will arguably be an important precondition to ensure continuous knowledge advancement in the field.

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Examining the Efficacy of Accountability Systems in Preventing Nonprofit Misconduct: A Look Beyond Financial Fraud

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. The purpose of our study is to broaden the investigation of nonprofit misconduct beyond financial fraud perpetrated by individual actors and to identify structural features that are more or less likely to be associated with actual misconduct. We utilize the Charity Navigator Advisory System and related press releases to identify 215 nonprofit organizations with confirmed or alleged misconduct. We also collect the IRS Form 990 information for 133 out of the 215 organizations with known misconduct and 150 organizations without known misconduct to compare their accountability structures. Our findings suggest that, while financial fraud committed by individual perpetrators against their organizations is the most frequently identified type of misconduct, a substantial number of other types of misbehaviors also commonly occur. Our comparison analysis indicates that organizations with known misconduct deviate significantly from scandal-free charities in several structural aspects.

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Let’s Give Together: Can Collaborative Giving Boost Generosity?

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. A growing number of people donate to charity together with others, such as a spouse, friend, or stranger. Does giving to charity collectively with another person—called collaborative giving—promote generosity? Existing data offer unsatisfactory insight; most studies are correlational, present mixed findings, or examine other concepts. Yet, theory suggests that collaborative giving may increase generosity because giving with others could be intrinsically enjoyable. We conducted two well-powered, pre-registered experiments to test whether collaborative giving boosts generosity. In Experiment 1 (N = 202; 101 dyads) and Experiment 2 (N = 310; 155 dyads), pairs of unacquainted undergraduates earned money and were randomly assigned to donate collaboratively (Experiments 1–2), individually in each other’s presence (Experiments 1–2), or privately (Experiment 2). Across studies, we observed no condition differences on generosity. However, collaborative (vs. individual) giving predicted greater intrinsic enjoyment, which, in turn, predicted larger donations, suggesting a promising potential mechanism for future research and practice.

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Human Service Nonprofits Providing Services to Sex Workers: Efforts to Manage Competing Logics and Ideologies From an Inhabited Institutions Framework

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. Human service nonprofits (HSNPs) are primarily responsible for addressing prominent social problems such as poverty, homelessness, addiction, and mental health. As such, they vary considerably in their service provision to their marginalized clients. In this paper, I use the theories of institutional logics and inhabited institutions to highlight how individual actors within HSNPs translate different institutional logics in service provision. Using qualitative interviews from 38 HSNP managers working with sex workers, I focus on competing logics and gender ideologies that influence HSNPs. Findings show that despite conflict between different gender ideologies, HSNP employees discover merits in combining logics and ideologies, discovering ways to reinterpret these at the ground level in conjunction with social relationships and interactions in the field. The implications around the role of individual agency and meaning-making in nonprofit dynamics, as well as a reflection upon what this means for HSNPs and their work, is discussed.

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The Role of Implicit Biases and Explicit Attitudes Toward the Poor in Donation Choices

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. We examined how individuals’ implicit biases and explicit attitudes toward the poor may be associated with the types of social programs people chose to give to. Participants included 112 students. When people believed that poverty is due to internal causes (e.g., people are lazy) or if they held implicit biases that the poor are irresponsible, they were more likely to avoid unconditional cash transfer (UCT) or in-kind donation (IKD) and choose conditional cash transfer. When people believed that poverty is due to external (e.g., poor economy) or cultural causes (e.g., born poor), they were more likely to choose UCT or IKD. People’s affective/positive feelings toward the poor using implicit and explicit measures were not associated with donation choice. Our study highlighted differences between affective feelings versus cognitive beliefs about the poor, and that both implicit and explicit forms of cognitive beliefs can be associated with one’s giving choices.

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The Gendered Pathways Into Giving and Volunteering: Similar or Different Across Countries?

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. There has been a steady increase in research studying the role of gender in prosocial behavior, such as charitable giving and volunteering. We provide an extensive review of the interdisciplinary literature and derive hypotheses about three different pathways that lead men and women to differ in their display of giving and volunteering: pathways through social capital, motivations, and resources. We test these hypotheses across 19 countries by analyzing 28,410 individuals, using generalized structural equation models. Our results support previous research, conducted in single countries, that there are distinct different pathways that lead men and women to engage in giving and volunteering: Women report stronger motivations to help others, but men report more of the financial resources that make giving and volunteering possible. The gendered pathways to giving and volunteering that lead through social capital, educational achievement, and financial security vary by country.

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No Strings Attached: Philanthropy, Race, and Donor Control From Black Power to Black Lives Matter

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. This article examines a moment of crisis and experimentation in philanthropy from the late 1960s to analyze how race shapes philanthropy. Specifically, it considers two giving circles in Boston launched as a linked funding initiative to address economic and racial inequality: (a) a group of wealthy, White suburbanites who started the Fund for Urban Negro Development to direct donations with “no strings attached” to the other, (b) the Boston Black United Front Foundation, an entity started by Black power activists in the city. Using archival records of the two groups, I analyze their efforts to decouple hierarchies of race and giving in funder–grantee relationships, and connect scholarship on African American history and philanthropy to that on donor control. I frame the notion of “no strings attached” giving as relative and shaped by positioning and identity in ways that produce multiple understandings of the material and abstract “strings” of philanthropy.

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