Tag Archives: volunteer

Designing Social Media Fundraising Messages: An Experimental Approach to Understanding How Message Concreteness and Framing Influence Donation Intentions

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. This experiment examined the effects of fundraising message characteristics on donation intentions through a simulated social media campaign. A 2 (abstract vs. concrete message) × 2 (gain vs. loss framing) between-subjects experiment (n = 213) revealed that a message with detailed fundraising outcomes elicited a greater intention to donate through heightened perceived message credibility, perceived transparency, cognitive elaboration, and empathy. Gain and loss framing, however, did not result in significant differences in donation intentions. Theoretically, this study uncovered the psychological mechanisms through which message concreteness increases donation intentions. Practically, results of this study provided implications for drafting effective fundraising messages that can be disseminated on social media.

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“Where My Gays At?” The Status of LGBTQ People and Queer Theory in Nonprofit Research

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. This article critically examines academic scholarship in the field of nonprofit studies that pertains to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) people and issues. We introduce the key tenets of queer theory, a critical theory which encourages questioning social constructs, to nonprofit studies as a lens through which to examine the nonprofit sector. Using a queer approach, we analyze the past research on LGBTQ issues along the continuums of whether the research subjects are active or passive participants, and whether the focus on LGBTQ issues is ancillary or central. We find a minority of articles, most written between 2015 and 2019, which position LGBTQ people as central and active participants in the research. We conclude by providing a research agenda for how queer theory can be applied to the nonprofit sector and argue that placing LGBTQ people and organizations as central constituencies in nonprofit research will facilitate social change.

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Book Review: The business of changing the world: How billionaires, tech disrupters, and social entrepreneurs are transforming the global aid industry by Kumar, R. and The enlightened capitalists: Cautionary tales of business pioneers who tried to do well by doing good by O’Toole, J

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print.

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Half a Century of NVSQ: Thematic Stability Across Years and Editors

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. The aim of this article is to understand how the scholarship of the nonprofit sector shifted after almost half a century (1972–2019) of publication in the field’s premier journal, Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly. Unlike previous attempts to understand the field’s scholarly evolution, we did not rely on expert opinion and analysis of themes but applied an automated content analytic method, more specifically structural topic modeling (STM). Using this method, we identified 37 key thematic topics that most optimally represent the 1,516 articles that were published in the studied period. After reporting these 37 thematic topics, we analyzed fluctuations based on three key periods of the journal and the editors’ disciplinary fields. While overall there was a trend of continuity (29 out of 37 topics) and little if any impact of the editors’ disciplines, a few thematic topics showed decline and fewer showed increase over time.

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Perception of Internal Controls Helps Explain Whistleblowing

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. The nonprofit sector may suffer financially from inconsistency in regulations and polices surrounding internal control implementation. To address this issue, our study explores how perceived internal control strength differs between nonprofit and for-profit organizations. Furthermore, we examine three components of the Committee of Sponsoring Organization framework to determine which components might significantly influence whistleblowing for nonprofit organizations. As expected, all three components appear to significantly influence whistleblowing for those in for-profit organizations. For those in nonprofit organizations, the perception of control activities and monitoring activities significantly mediates the relationship between organization type and whistleblowing intentions. Finally, the data indicate that the use of an anonymous website for whistleblowing at a nonprofit organization may require added attention and resources if employees at nonprofits are to use this outlet to the same extent as it is used at a for-profit organization.

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Why Is Human Milk Donation Absent From the Literature on Philanthropic Giving? The Invisible Female Donor and Her Invisible Gift

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. In this research note, we call attention to human milk donation being essentially omitted from the philanthropy literature and bodily gifting research. We focus here on human milk donations for infant feeding through nonprofit milk banks. We argue that its omission is due to two main factors: (a) the incoherence of defining human milk donation and the challenges to its regulation and (b) its consideration as care work and the characteristics of the milk donor identity. We end with avenues for future research in this area.

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Growing Up Nonprofit: Predictors of Early-Stage Nonprofit Formalization

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. The nonprofit organizational life cycle literature has traditionally focused on the entry and exit processes; the intermediate organizational life stages between these bookends have received less attention. Almost half of all nonprofits at any given time operate in an early life stage with less than US$100,000 in revenue, minimal overhead spending, and no paid managers. This study examines the process by which nonprofits leave the small, informal, startup phase and begin the next life stage characterized by growth and formalization. We identify financial and organizational characteristics that predict whether the nonprofit will successfully transition out of the early and informal life stage. We find that investments in professional fundraising and access to government funds are predictive of the transition out of the start-up phase, while traditional financial predictors such as revenue concentration, equity ratio, fixed cost ratios, and the accumulation of unrestricted assets have modest to no effects.

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Disaggregating the Effects of Inequality on Informal Giving: Evidence From Pakistan

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. In this article, we outline the determinants of informal charitable giving and the link between giving and inequality. Arguing that inequality encompasses at least two competing effects—distrust and observed need for donations—we use a novel proxy to separate out the effect of the latter from the former on household’s magnitude of informal giving. Using data from the Pakistan Centre for Philanthropy’s 2014 Indigenous Individual Philanthropy Survey, we find that informal giving in Pakistan follows patterns like those observed in the literature for formal giving. We also find evidence for a positive relationship between observed need and the magnitude of person-to-person giving. Controlling for observed need, we find that the residual correlation between inequality and giving is negative, one explanation of which may be the positive link between inequality and decreased social cohesion and trust.

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Donations and the Overhead Ratio Are Related Even When Donors Do Not Bother About Efficiency

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. Empirical research on donor behavior infers from donations being negatively related to overhead ratios (or indicators based on these ratios) that donors give more to more “efficient” organizations. This relation is proved to be at least partly driven by a purely mechanical link between donations and overhead ratios, which therefore should be isolated when studying empirically the behavioral effect of overhead ratio–based indicators on donors’ giving decisions.

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Serving the Vulnerable While Being Vulnerable: Organizing Resilience in a Social Welfare Sector

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. The interplay between formal organizing structures and the informal social networks of employees and organizations furthers the resilience of nonprofit organizations that serve the community. This case study draws on qualitative multi-pronged data collected in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey from two faith networks of social welfare organizations serving the vulnerable in Houston, Texas. Results show that hybrid organizing of formal structures and informal networks contributes to organizational and community resilience. By examining both forms of organizing, this article shows how formal structures offer foundational support to the more informal and nimble social networks across the interorganizational partnerships that support the community. As such, this study extends the process orientation toward resilience by documenting how individuals, organizations, and networks expand organizational internal capacities through disaster relief efforts enacted across levels (employee–organization–community).

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Benefit-Based Revenue Streams and Financial Health: The Case of Arts and Cultural Nonprofits

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. A large number of empirical studies have discussed the revenue diversification strategy for nonprofits, but little attention has been paid to the components of revenue portfolios, even though each revenue source flows into a nonprofit with its own characteristics. Drawing on Young’s benefits theory, this study tests the proposition that a nonprofit would be stronger financially if its income portfolio reflected the mix of benefits it provides. We find evidence that the benefit-based revenue strategy is associated with better financial outcomes using the data set from DataArts (2008–2016). Yet, this relationship is not linear, and the positive relationship is seen only when the share of benefit-based revenues is above a certain threshold. A detailed examination reveals that the benefit-based revenue strategy should be employed judiciously, depending on each organization’s own capacity. We discuss the ways nonprofits can employ benefit-based financing while diversifying revenue streams.

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Understanding the Donor-Advised Fund Giving Process: Insights From Current DAF Users

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. The growing use of donor-advised funds (DAFs) is changing the way many donors give to charity. Despite the increasing influence and importance of DAFs in the nonprofit sector, very little is known about how people actually use them. We conducted 48 in-depth interviews with DAF users, collecting rich qualitative data about why and how donors use DAFs. We use these data to sketch a DAF giving process with four phases and multiple decision points. We highlight some of the common donor strategies that are used with DAFs. Overall, we present evidence of abundant diversity in individual adaptation for giving through DAFs.

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The Prevalence of Ethnic, Cultural, and Folk Nonprofit Organizations in Increasingly Diverse Communities: A Case of Demand Heterogeneity

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. Building on the nonprofit density literature, we examine county-level factors that are linked to the growth of ethnic, cultural, and folk (ECF) nonprofits, a vital but often overlooked subfield of nonprofits. We draw county-level nonprofit, demographic, socioeconomic, and government data from 1995 to 2015 to examine how community factors, particularly immigrant and racial/ethnic composition, are associated with the number of ECFs. We pay particular attention to the influence of Asian and Hispanic populations, the two largest U.S. immigrant groups, and run national-origin subanalyses. Results suggest that ECFs have increased in counties experiencing new immigrant population growth. However, our study suggests that the growth in ECFs has not been evenly distributed across racial/ethnic groups, and there are important national-origin disparities among Asians and Hispanics. We conclude with a discussion of the importance of attending to how ECFs can support the needs of different racial/ethnic groups to better integrate U.S. communities.

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Charitable Giving in Married Couples: Untangling the Effects of Education and Income on Spouses’ Giving

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. This research note looks beyond the unitary household model and analyzes the influence of household resources by gender on charitable giving. We investigate the intrahousehold variables of income and education and their effects on giving behaviors in married couples. We use data from the longitudinal Philanthropy Panel Study (2005–2017) to examine how spouses’ income and educational differences affect charitable giving behaviors and introduce fixed effects to control for unobserved heterogeneity. Initially, we find a positive relationship between both the husband’s and wife’s earned and unearned incomes and the likelihood and amount of giving by married couples. However, when fixed effects are used, we find women’s earned income to be significantly associated with all forms of giving, showing that women’s labor market earnings disproportionately influence giving behavior. Education is less of a factor in whether couples give and influences giving only when the husband has more education than the wife.

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NGO Roles and Anticipated Outcomes in Environmental Participatory Processes: A Typology

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. Despite the plethora of research on environmental participatory processes, the forms of nongovernmental organization (NGO) involvement in these processes, and the influence of their involvement on participation outcomes, are still under-conceptualized. This article aims to develop a conceptual typology for NGO roles in environmental participatory processes and to suggest how these roles might be associated with participation outcomes. Following a review of public participation literature and NGO capacities, we present four prototypes of NGO roles along two axes: orientation axis and nature of involvement axis. The prototypes include Entrepreneur, Service-Provider, Enabler, and Partner. We then offer an empirical illustration of the typology using eight case studies across the globe and discuss how the four NGO roles might be associated with outcomes of participatory processes. The framework acknowledges the complex, sometimes limited, contribution of NGOs to participatory processes and suggests practical implications.

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Nonprofit Online Responsiveness: An Exploratory Field Experiment in China

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. This article assesses sources of nonprofit responsiveness and identifies potential drivers for responsiveness, using an online field experiment involving philanthropic foundations in China (N = 3,254). Baseline requests were sent out to the foundations through emails and vignettes were applied to treatment groups by inserting different identity claims or prompts into the contents of the emails. Experimental results showed that, compared with the control group, potential donors were more likely to receive responses, claims concerning government ties or media backgrounds resulted in fewer responses, and citing legal obligations could increase the odds of receiving satisfactory responses. Interpreting the results with reference to stakeholder salience theory, we argue that potential donors are the most salient stakeholders to foundations. Donor requests and legal obligations are the most effective forces driving foundations’ responsiveness in China.

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Mission, Motivation, and the Active Decision to Work for a Social Cause

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. The mission of a job affects the type of worker attracted to an organization but may also provide incentives to an existing workforce. We conducted a natural field experiment with 246 short-term workers. We randomly allocated some of these workers to either a prosocial or a commercial job. Our data suggest that the mission of a job has a performance-enhancing motivational impact on particular individuals only, those with a prosocial attitude. However, the mission is very important if it has been actively selected. Those workers who have chosen to contribute to a social cause outperform the ones randomly assigned to the same job by about half a standard deviation. This effect seems to be a universal phenomenon that is not driven by information about the alternative job, the choice itself, or a particular subgroup.

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Bridging the Gap: A Qualitative Analysis of What It Takes to Inspire Youth to Engage in Volunteering

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. This article explores how to inspire youth to volunteer. Drawing on ideas of inspiration and motivational framing, we develop insight into how constructing and cultivating a sense of efficacy and obligation pushes a young individual passively inspired by the good deeds and acts being performed in the third sector into becoming someone who is inspired to take action and volunteer. Getting out into the real world of practice allowed us to explore the situated practices carried out in a youth summer internship program. We find that five program practices—authorizing, creating safe relational spaces, reflecting, revealing privilege, and simplifying—fostered an emergent action-oriented set of beliefs that supplied the impetus youth needed to become inspired to volunteer. This has implications for our understanding of the inspirational process as well as for philanthropic foundations looking to design effective programs. Limitations and directions for future research are also discussed.

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Dealing With Paradoxes, Manufacturing Governance: Organizational Change in European Third-Sector Organizations

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Ahead of Print. Third-sector organizations (TSOs) in Europe have been confronted with profound changes to their regulatory and societal environments. By applying the concepts of “organizational paradoxes” and “governance,” we analyze how TSOs have adjusted their governance as a response to these environmental challenges. Based on organizational case studies in France, Germany, and the Netherlands, we argue that TSOs have found multiple ways to address tensions at the organizational level, for example, by mobilizing and combining resources, re-arranging their organizational governance and by adopting new legal forms. These changes have resulted in hybridization and increased organizational complexity that might translate into the emergence of new paradoxes at the organizational level. Therefore, dealing with paradoxes constitutes an ongoing process for TSOs that goes beyond incremental adjustments.

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