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2004 Trends of the Week

December 19, 2004 - January 1, 2005

Donations Up, But So Is Demand

More than half of nonprofits say their donations increased during the first nine months of the year, but seven in 10 say demand for their services also rose. The results are part of the third annual nonprofit economic survey conducted by GuideStar, a nonprofit that gathers and disseminates information about charities. While the increase in donations was seen throughout the U.S. and across focus areas, the study shows that nonprofits with annual expenditures of $20 million or more are most likely to report an increase in contributions. It also shows that nonprofits in the employment/job-related and youth development fields were most likely to report an increase in demand for their services. Go to: philanthropyjournal.org
 

December 12 - 18, 2004

Report Shows Widespread Use of E-Learning among Nonprofits

The first-ever Nonprofit and Association E-learning Survey shows wide and growing adoption of e-learning among nonprofit organizations and associations, with more than 54 percent of total respondents either using e-learning or planning to in the next 12 months. Sponsored by Isoph (http://www.isoph.com) and N-TEN (http://www.nten.org), the survey provides the first broad data on mission-based organizations' use of e-learning technologies. From August 24 through September 15, 2004, 697 individuals responded to the Web-based survey, offering important insight into how nonprofits and associations develop and use e-learning. Additional findings include: 

bullet High satisfaction: More than 88 percent of respondents indicated they were very or somewhat satisfied with their e-learning programs. Another 10 percent reported that they were somewhat dissatisfied, while only 2 percent were very dissatisfied with their e-learning programs.
bullet Key benefits: convenience, access, and cost-effectiveness. Almost 88 percent of respondents listed "convenience for learners" as a key benefit of e-learning. "Cost effectiveness" and "ability to reach more learners" were also chosen as key benefits by over 70 percent of respondents.
bullet Biggest barrier: staff time. When asked to report the three biggest barriers in developing e-learning, "staff time" was the only choice listed by a majority of respondents (54 percent). "Funding," "expertise," "concern about end users' technology," and "concern for effectiveness" were all listed as barriers by at least 30 percent of respondents. The full survey report, including key findings as well as statistics, is available for download as a PDF file at www.isoph.com.
 

December 5 - 11, 2004

Strategic Restructuring in the News

In the nonprofit sector a growing trend is the increase in strategic restructuring. This often occurs when multiple nonprofits have overlapping missions, serve the same community or offer similar services.  Those nonprofits unwilling to merge or be acquired could simply go out of existence.  Creating alliances is another alternative.  For instance, an alliance of shelters or food pantries for a metropolitan area or state could offer a purchasing cooperative for common supplies. LaPiana Associates has compiled a list contains references to articles in the popular press from 1997 to 2004 that highlight examples of strategic restructuring. Go to: www.lapiana.org
 

November 21 - December 4, 2004

Health Benefits Squeeze Imperils Nonprofits

Rising health costs in America are causing a crisis in the nonprofit sector, according to a recent study conducted by The Center for Civil Society Studies at the Johns Hopkins Institute for Policy Studies.  The survey, “The Health Benefits Squeeze: Implications for Nonprofit Organizations and Those They Serve,” outlines the impact of increasing health care expenses in the U.S. on the nonprofit sector. 

Go to: www.onphilanthropy.com
 

November 14 - 20, 2004

Foundations for Success: Emerging Trends in Grantmakers' Use of the Internet

Drawing on ten years of experience working with some of the nation's most forward-thinking foundations, this research report discusses how foundations are using new technology to support grant making. Foundations for Success focuses on four major trends in grantmakers' use of the Internet:

bullet

Transparency: Using the Internet to heighten awareness of a foundation's purpose and programs, priorities, recent grants and funding criteria, as well as the outcomes of its grantmaking.

bullet

Network Building: Creating an online workspace in which funders, grantees and other foundation stakeholders collaborate and share timely information to maximize their effectiveness.

bullet

Knowledge Management: Implementing Web-based systems to capture, synthesize, manage and disseminate knowledge gleaned from funders and grantees.

bullet

Integrated Grants Management: Building Web-based systems to streamline the grants management life cycle, from eligibility screening and online application submission to proposal review and grantee reporting.

Go to: www.iapps.com/Resources
 

November 7 - 13, 2004

Wealth Gap Widens Between Whites and Hispanics

A new study from the Pew Hispanic Center in Washington, D.C., finds that the wealth gap between Hispanic and white households is growing and far exceeds the gap in household income between the two groups.

Based on an analysis of data from the U.S. Census Bureau, the study, The Wealth of Hispanic Households: 1996 to 2002, found that while the median income of Hispanic and African American households in 2002 was two-thirds that of white households, the median net worth of Hispanic households was $7,932, compared to $88,651 for white households and only $5,988 for African American households.

According to the study, between 1999 and 2001 the net worth of Hispanic and African-American households, which were especially hard hit by the recession in 2001 and the jobless recovery that followed, fell by 27 percent, while the net worth of white households increased by 2 percent. Go to: fdncenter.org
 

October 31 - November 6, 2004

Child Trends

Child Trends is a nonprofit, nonpartisan research organization dedicated to improving the lives of children by conducting research and providing science-based information to improve the decisions, programs, and policies that affect children and their families.  In advancing its mission, Child Trends collects and analyzes data; conducts, synthesizes, and disseminates research; designs and evaluates programs; and develops and tests promising approaches to research in the field. In keeping with its mission to improve the lives of children, Child Trends shares the results of its research and analysis with those who set policy, provide services, fund programs, launch studies, and shape opinions related to children and their families

 Research areas include:

bullet Child Well-Being, including child abuse, neglect, and family violence; early childhood development; education; foster care/adoption; health; and youth development.
bullet Marriage/Family, including adolescent sexual behavior; family strengths; and fatherhood.
bullet Research Methods.
bullet Welfare and Poverty.
bullet Public Information and Public Policy

 Go to: www.childtrends.org
 

October 24 - 30, 2004

Reinventing Aging: Baby Boomers and Civic Engagement

As some of the demands that have commanded attention in mid-life recede, baby boomers will have the potential to become a social resource of unprecedented proportions by actively participating in the life of their communities. But will they participate? Compared to their parents' generation, the so-called "Greatest Generation," boomers have done less by every measure of civic engagement, including rates of voting and joining community groups. This and related questions are examined in a report released t by the Harvard School of Public Health-MetLife Foundation Initiative on Retirement and Civic Engagement. The Report identifies strategies to expand the contributions of boomers to civic life. MetLife Foundation provided $1 million to fund the Initiative. Based in part on a national conference convened by the Initiative, and commissioned background papers, the Report distills insights of key thinkers on the implications of aging boomers on society and ways to channel their skills and interests to strengthen local communities. Go to: www.hsph.harvard.edu
 

October 17 - 23, 2004

The Estate Tax and Charitable Giving

This paper by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), prepared at the request of the Senate Finance Committee, examines the effect that changing the estate tax would have on donations to charity. Because charitable bequests lower the taxable amount of estates, the tax gives people an incentive to contribute to charity at death rather than leave assets to heirs. Furthermore, the estate tax provides an incentive to make charitable contributions during life. The paper finds that increasing the amount exempted from the estate tax from $675,000 to either $2 million or $3.5 million would reduce charitable giving by less than 3 percent. However, repealing the tax would have a larger impact, decreasing donations to charity by 6 percent to 12 percent. Go to: www.cbo.gov
 

October 10 - 16, 2004

Black Philanthropy: Harnessing a Growing Resource

This article highlights trends in philanthropy in African American communities and offers advice to professionals who want to tap into this under-recognized field.  The article includes advice to fundraising professionals wishing to better understand black philanthropy as well as a number of other studies on the subject. Go to: www.onphilanthropy.com
 

October 3 - 9, 2004

The Performing Arts: Trends and Their Implications

A new RAND report, The Performing Arts in a New Era, by Kevin McCarthy et al., addresses the question: What are the overall trends affecting the performing arts in the last few decades, and what do they imply about the future of arts in America? The study, supported by funds from The Pew Charitable Trusts, is the first to provide a comprehensive overview of the performing arts. It synthesizes available data on theater, opera, dance, and music, in both their live and recorded forms. Although most of the existing data are about the nonprofit performing arts--and those data have serious limitations--the study also analyzes the commercial performing arts, such as the recording industry and Broadway theater, as well as the volunteer sector, by which the authors mean arts activities that are carried out primarily by amateur and small community-oriented nonprofit groups. The research focuses on signs of change in arts audiences, artists, arts organizations, and financing over the past 20 years--both in the aggregate and, where the data allow, by discipline and sector.

Go to: www.rand.org/publications
 

September 26 - October 2, 2004

Signs of Growth in Nonprofit Industry, Survey Finds

A survey by software provider Blackbaud, in Charleston, South Carolina, finds that nonprofits are reporting increases in their budgets, funded staff positions, donations made by individuals, and demand for services.

According to State of the Nonprofit Industry, 59 percent of nonprofits reported an increase in their budgets for 2004; 96 percent expect either to maintain or add to executive/management staffing levels; 57 percent reported growth in donations from individuals; and 75 percent indicated a rise in demand for the services they provide. "These results are good news for the nonprofit industry," said Blackbaud CEO Robert J. Sywolski. "With more money and staff at their disposal, organizations are better equipped to deliver on their missions. It is clear from the growing demand for their services that nonprofits continue to play a vital role in helping those in need."  Go to: www.blackbaud.com/resources
 

September 19 - 25, 2004

Impact of Faith-Based Giving and Volunteering

A report released in 2002 by INDEPENDENT SECTOR and the National Council of Churches details the extraordinary philanthropy of America’s givers to religion. Faith and Philanthropy: The Connection Between Charitable Behavior and Giving to Religion reveals that households that give to religion are the bedrock of giving to the nation’s nonprofit organizations. Households that give to both religious and secular causes give more money and volunteer more than households that give to only one type of organization.  To download a .pdf file, go  to: www.independentsector.org

September 12 - 18, 2004

Recent Data Shows Decline in Nonprofit Employment, Earnings 

On August 19, OMB Watch released a new report, "Recent Trends in Nonprofit Employment and Earnings: 1990-2004," which examines the recent history of employment and compensation trends in the nonprofit sector. It found that while growth in nonprofit employment continued during the 2001 recession and immediately after, it stalled over the past year, with significant declines in average hours worked, weekly earnings, and hourly wages. Data on individual states reflect this nationwide pattern.

According to government data, employment in the nonprofit sector has grown by only about 0.5 percent in the year ending July 2004 -- which is well below its average rate of 2.4 percent annual growth over the past 15 years. Average weekly earnings dropped significantly over the past year, indicating a weak labor market. This was due in part to declines in both hourly compensation and the average number of hours worked weekly, which had been stable through early 2003.  Go to: www.ombwatch.org
 

September 5 - 11, 2004

Trends Affecting the Health and Well Being of Organizations and Communities

Input from the 8th Third Sector New England Conference, May 13-14, 2002

On the first day of the Third Sector New England 's 8th "Nonprofit Workout" conference, Ruth McCambridge asked the over 450 participants to meet in small groups to discuss the following question: "What are the trends that are affecting the health and well being of our organizations and communities?"

The responses of the groups to this question were then distilled into eight trends. These trends with some of the examples provided by the groups are listed at: www.nonprofitquarterly.org
 

August 29 - September 4, 2004

Income, Poverty, and Health Insurance Census Bureau Report

The nation’s official poverty rate rose from 12.1 percent in 2002 to 12.5 percent in 2003, according to Income, Poverty, and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2003, a report released by the U.S. Census Bureau. At the same time, the number of people with health insurance increased by 1.0 million to 243.3 million between 2002 and 2003, and the number without such coverage rose by 1.4 million to 45.0 million. The percentage of the nation’s population without coverage grew from 15.2 percent in 2002 to 15.6 percent in 2003. Other main findings include:
bullet Real median household money income did not change from 2002 to 2003. All historical income data are expressed in 2003 dollars and were adjusted using the Consumer PriceIndex Research Series, which measured inflation at 2.3 percent between 2002 and 2003.
bullet

The ratio of female-to-male earnings in 2003 for full-time, year-round workers was 76 percent, a decline from 77 percent in 2002, because of a decline in the earnings of female year-round full-time workers.

bullet The official poverty rate rose, from 12.1 percent in 2002 to 12.5 percent in 2003. The number in poverty increased also, by 1.3 million people, to 35.9 million in 2003. In 2003, the average poverty threshold for a family of four was $18,810; for a family of three, $14,680.
bullet The poverty rates for people 18 to 64 and those 65 and older remained unchanged, but the poverty rate for children rose from 16.7 percent in 2002 to 17.6 percent in 2003.

 Go to: www.census.gov
 

August 22 - 28, 2004

US Senate Finance Committee Proposes Massive Reforms
and Best Practices for Nonprofits

On June 22, 2004, the US Senate Committee on Finance issued a white paper calling for major reforms and new regulations to be imposed on nonprofits. Grant Thornton has developed a good summary of the key proposals contained in the white paper. According to Grant Thornton, some or all of these proposals might be enacted but many may not. For a copy of the summary, go to: www.grantthornton.com  

August 15 - 21, 2004

Trends Impacting Nonprofit Organizations' Budgets

Shrinking funds for nonprofits in a struggling and competitive economy call for entrepreneurial thinking and innovative approaches to fundraising. According to Campaign Consultation Inc, the following trends impact the survival of nonprofit organizations: Go to: epicenter.nationalserviceresources.org
 

August 8 - 14, 2004

Racial and Ethnic Composition of the Child Population

The percentage of children in the United States who are Hispanic doubled between 1980 and 2002, from 9 percent to 18 percent, and is projected to increase to nearly one-quarter (24 percent) of the child population by 2020. The United States has a long history of ethnic and racial diversity in its population. That diversity has accelerated in recent decades, a trend which is expected to continue into the future. To view a .pdf file, go to: www.childtrendsdatabank.org
 

August 1 - 7, 2004

Employment in the Nonprofit Sector

This research report published in 2003 by Independent Sector provides data about the growth of employment in the nonprofit sector over the last three decades. Nonprofits have consistently outpaced the for-profit and public sectors in job growth. To download a .pdf file, go  to: www.independentsector.org
 

July 25 - 31, 2004

Blurred Boundaries and Muddled Motives

Blurred Boundaries and Muddled Motives: A World of Shifting Social Responsibilities - This article, published by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation in 2003, explores the growing trend of the blurring of traditional boundaries between the nonprofit and private business sectors. To download a .pdf file, go to: www.wkkf.org
 

July 18 - 24, 2004

Attracting and Developing the Next Generation of Nonprofit Leaders

A new report from Forbes Funds addresses some of the critical issues related to how jobseekers perceive nonprofit work and what needs to be done to attract and retain them. To download this report as a .pdf file, go to: www.forbesfunds.org.
 

July 11 - 17, 2004

Five Trends That Will Shape the Face of Philanthropy

This article, appearing in E-Philanthropy Review, describes five information technology trends that will have significant impact on nonprofit fund development efforts. According to the author, Ephraim Feig, CTO and Chief Marketing Officer for Kintera, nonprofits today must be aware of these paradigm-changing trends so that they can make informed decisions regarding their information technology investments. The five trends include:

bullet Evolution of customer relationship management tools:
bullet Application service providers software solutions as leased services via the Internet.
bullet On-demand computing-- buying software services as a utility, paying for only what you use and when you use it;
bullet Evolution of Internet communities and the software tools available to build and sustain online communities; and
bullet Advanced methods of data analysis becoming accessible to non-experts.

 Go to: www.charitychannel.com
 

July 4 - 10, 2004

Child Trends DataBank

The Child Trends DataBank is the one-stop-shop for the latest national trends and research on over 80 key indicators of child and youth well-being, with new indicators added each month! The database is provided by Child Trends, a nonprofit, nonpartisan research organization dedicated to improving the lives of children by conducting research and providing science-based information to improve the decisions, programs, and policies that affect children and their families. Go to: www.childtrendsdatabank.org
 

June 27 - July 3, 2004

Net Works: Prospects for Advocacy and Mobilization Online

This article states that recent trends in online organizing suggest that organizations can galvanize large constituencies by empowering individuals to take the lead, as recruiters, organizers and solo actors. It discusses the recent successes of MoveOn.org and the Howard Dean campaign as examples of this movement. To download a .pdf file, go to: www.jedmiller.com
 

June 20 - 26, 2004

Gay Philanthropy

In a groundbreaking study that collected information from 2,300 members of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender (GLBT) organizations in Milwaukee, Philadelphia, and San Francisco, researchers M.V. Lee Badgett and Nancy Cunningham set out to increase understanding of giving and volunteering by GLBT people.  

The principal investigators found that the GLBT individuals surveyed in this study were as, or even more, generous than other populations. The average GLBT donor gives 2.5 percent ($1,194) of personal income to nonprofits compared to 2.2 percent ($1,017) of personal income by the average American donor. This private donation rate is important to GLBT organizations because of their relative lack of foundation funding. The average amount of GLBT time volunteered in the previous month was also higher; 29 hours of volunteer service versus 18 hours overall. The study not only helps to map the giving patterns of GLBT people, but also provides recommendations to nonprofits about how to structure appeals. Go to: www.nonprofitresearch.org

To obtain a free copy of the printed report, contact the Working Group on Funding Gay and Lesbian Issues at (212) 475-2930 or write them at 116 E. 16th Street, 7th Floor, New York, NY 10003.  A text version may also be downloaded from the Institute for Gay and Lesbian Strategic Studies' Web site at www.iglss.org.
 

June 13 - 19, 2004

Sarbanes-Oxley Act and Implications for Nonprofit Organizations

Published by BoardSource & Independent Sector, this report discusses provisions of the Sarbanes-Oxley corporate governance act. It examines provisions of the law and makes recommendations for nonprofits to voluntarily comply with certain provisions. 

To download a .pdf file, go to: www.boardsource.org
 

June 6 - 12, 2004

Growth in Nonprofit Employment Outpaces Rate in Private and Public Sectors

America’s nonprofit sector has significantly outpaced the for-profit and government sectors in employment growth, reports a new study from INDEPENDENT SECTOR. According to the latest measures available, nonprofit employment grew at an annual rate of 2.5 percent between 1997 and 2001, adding over 1 million jobs to the nation’s economy. During the same time period the business sector grew at 1.8 percent annually, and employment in the government sector grew at a rate of 1.6 percent.

Nonprofit employment, which has doubled in the past 25 years, encompasses 12.5 million workers—nearly 10 percent of total employment in the United States. By 2010, this total should reach approximately 15 million, with growth forecast specifically in the areas of health services and social/human services. Organizations of the “independent sector” [501(c)(3), 501(c)(4) and religious organizations] employ 11.7 million workers, or 9 percent of total employment.

To download a .pdf file, go to: www.independentsector.org
 

May 30 - June 5, 2004

State and National Health Trends

The web site of the Kaiser Family Foundation contains an abundance of state and national trends including data relating to health status, health coverage, Medicaid and SCHIP, Medicare, health costs and budgets, providers and service use, women's health, minority health, HIV/AIDS, and more. Go to: www.kff.org
 

May 23 - 29, 2004

Raising the Barre: The Geographic, Financial, and Economic Trends of Nonprofit Dance Companies

Raising the Barre: The Geographic, Financial, and Economic Trends of Nonprofit Dance Companies was commissioned by the National Endowment for the Arts as part of the agency’s ongoing effort to conduct and disseminate research findings on arts organizations. The study draws on three databases containing information related to nonprofit dance companies: (1) the Unified Database of Arts Organizations (UDAO), a newly available database produced jointly by the Endowment, the National Center for Charitable Statistics as part of the Urban Institute, and the National Assembly of State

Arts Agencies; (2) the economic census, a census of business establishments conducted every five years by the U.S. Census Bureau; and (3) a database of dance company applicants, produced and maintained by the NEA dance staff. To download a .pdf file, go to: arts.endow.gov/pub/RaisingtheBarre.pdf
 

May 16 - 22, 2004

Foundations for the Future: Emerging Trends in Foundation Philanthropy

According to Lucy Bernholz, author of the study, foundations are currently experiencing an unprecedented period of change. Historically, change in the foundation sector has been created from within or in response to legislative and regulatory changes. However, foundations face a barrage of simultaneous external forces that are redefining the world in which philanthropy operates. Never before in the history of the philanthropic sector has so much change taken place, at such a rapid pace, outside of the control of the foundations themselves.

This paper presents the societal trends that are affecting philanthropy, analyzes the impact they are having on foundation programs and operations, and discusses ways that foundations might reinvent themselves to capitalize on the unique opportunities present in today’s environment.  Here is a sample:

Foundations of the future may be built from the Internet down, rather than from the filing cabinet and community up.… If they are designed “from the web down,” foundations should recognize that in gathering information from potential partners, reports from past grantees, and research on issues of interest, they have assembled an application process that is in turn a virtual library of issue-specific information. The information a foundation collects and produces can be as valuable a tool for social change as are the foundation’s financial resources. Foundations that recognize the value of this asset will place at least as mush emphasis on knowledge development, management and dissemination as they do on grants processing. To download a .pdf file, go to: www.usc.edu/schools
 

May 9 - 15, 2004

Stressed but Coping: Nonprofit Organizations and the Current Fiscal Crisis

Nonprofits experienced significant financial stress over the past year, but still managed to increase their services and boost revenue, according to this study from the Johns Hopkins Center for Civil Society Studies. “Focusing on a nationwide sample of nonprofit organizations that belong to national umbrella groups in five fields—children and family services, elderly services and housing, community and economic development, museums, and theaters—this survey is the most comprehensive effort to date to document the actual effects of recent economic weakness and government budget cuts on a significant group of the nation’s charitable organizations and those they serve, and to assess how the organizations have responded. What this survey shows is that American nonprofits have become, in many cases, highly entrepreneurial organizations, responding actively and creatively to new fiscal pressures. At the same time, however, the survey also makes clear that these pressures are exacting a toll.”  To download a .pdf file, go to: www.jhu.edu/listeningpost
 

May 2 - 8, 2004

Experience at Work: Volunteering and Giving Among Americans 50 and Over

The American Baby Boom generation represents the largest untapped pool of potential volunteers for the nonprofit community in recent history, according to a new study entitled Experience at Work: Volunteering and Giving Among Americans 50 and Over, by INDEPENDENT SECTOR and AARP. As Baby Boomers begin to approach retirement age, nonprofit organizations will be faced with unprecedented opportunities and challenges to engage this population. This study gives an analysis of the over-50 population in the United States by examining the current giving and volunteering patterns of this age group and comparing the philanthropic habits of Americans still in their working years, aged 50 to 64, and those who are retired, aged 65 and over.

 Key findings:

bullet The over-50 population is expected to grow by 18.3 million people over the next ten years;
bullet Those in the 50 to 64 age group will show the largest increase of 13.9 million people. These 50- to 64- year-olds will still be employed, earn the most and become the most generous givers;
bullet Nonprofits can expect an increase in the number of high givers from this age group; and
bullet More of this population will be available to volunteer more often.

Go to: www.independentsector.org
 

April 25 - May 1, 2004

Reflecting on the Past and Future of Evaluation

"Where We've Been and Where We're Going: Experts Reflect and Look Ahead" published by the Harvard Family Research Project, features the opinions of six evaluation experts who discuss how evaluation has changed in the last ten years and where they see the field going. Go to: www.gse.harvard.edu
 

April 18 - 24, 2004

Arts Funding IV: An Update on Foundation Trends

This report examines changes in U.S. foundation support for arts and culture, arts-related humanities, and the media through 2001. The report also places foundation arts giving within the context of changes in public and private support for the arts and in foundation funding overall. In addition, Arts Funding IV provides estimates of total foundation giving for the arts in 2002 and suggests the direction of change in foundations’ arts giving over the next few years. Go to: fdncenter.org
 

April 11 - 17, 2004

Foundation Center Reports Decline in Giving in 2003, Predicts Small Increase in 2004

Giving by the nation's nearly 65,000 grant making foundations declined an estimated 2.5 percent last year to $29.7 billion, down from just over $30 billion in 2002 and 2001, according to the Foundation Center's new report, Foundation Growth and Giving Estimates. Go to: www.fdncenter.org
 

April 4 - 10, 2004

Trends Affecting Human Services Nonprofit Organizations

Human services nonprofit organizations are facing overwhelming changes that they must learn to manage if they are to remain a vital component of the community system. This trend summary, one of a series of Best Practice Briefs, published by Outreach Partnerships @ Michigan State University, explores the implication for human services nonprofits resulting from demographic changes; globalization in the business sector; downsizing of government and privatization; demand for greater accountability for the use of charitable and public funds; and blurring of distinctions among the public, for-profit, and nonprofit sectors. This BRIEF focuses on demographic, economic, technological, and organizational trends affecting these human service organizations.  Go to: www.outreach.msu.edu
 

March 28 - April 3, 2004

10 Paradigm Shifts for New Millennium Boards

Christina Drouin, Executive Director for The Center for Strategic Planning in Boca Raton, Florida, has identified the following trends that define to new shape of nonprofit boards:  

  1. Old structures caused boards to focus more on what activities the organization should be engaged in; new structures cause boards to focus on the consumer results to be achieved. 
  2. Old structures were about power; new structures are about performance.
  3. Old structures were about decision-making through political influence; new structures support knowledge-based decision-making. 
  4. Succession in old structures was about whom do we know? Succession in new structures is about what skills do we need? 
  5. Old structures were about command; new structures are about collaboration. 
  6. Old structures were about silos; new structures are about teams.
  7. Old structures were about maintenance; new structures try to deliver sustainability through strategic thinking, planning, and implementation of knowledge-based decision-making.  
  8. Old structures focused more on how money is being spent; new structures focus more on outcomes that result from time and effort. Clearly stated outcomes increase board effectiveness. 
  9. Old structures focused on requirements, activities, and hierarchical accountabilities; new structures focus on purpose, core values, and outcomes.
  10. Old structures focused on programs; new structures focus on building high performance organizations.

Christina Drouin, Executive Director, Center for Strategic Planning, FL.  Go to www.planonline.org
 

March 21 - March 27, 2004

Foundation Giving Trends

Foundation Giving Trends 2003 Edition, published by The Foundation Center, examines the grant making patterns of a sample of larger US foundations from 1980 through 2001. The report explores changes in giving interests by subject focus, recipient types, type of support, population group served and geographic focus.  Go to: www.fdncenter.org
 

March 14 - March 20, 2004

Trends Affecting Nonprofit Organizations: Managing Nonprofit And Voluntary Organizations In A Changing Environment

This article, published by the Clemson University Extension and South Carolina Association of Nonprofit Organizations, describes a number of trends that are having impact on nonprofit board governance. Go to: www.clemson.edu
 

March 7 - March 13, 2004

Fundraising Trends

As new nonprofits replace bygone government programs, corporate America is also setting up new foundations and increasing their corporate giving programs. At the same time, competition for the same grant money is increasing. GrantStation has prepared several articles on the latest fundraising developments and trends that “will help you understand how to keep your organization's funding strategy flexible and successful in the ever-evolving philanthropic world.” Topics covered include: Social Venture Philanthropy, Satisfying Public Disclosure Requirements Online, Cause-Related Marketing – Growing Trends, Types of Money Available, Project-Funding Trends, and more.  Go to: www.grantstation.com
 

February 29 - March 6, 2004

Liability Trends for Nonprofit Organizations

This article by the Nonprofit Risk Management Center discusses emerging trends in nonprofit liability risks. Sources of liability risk include employment practices, donors, the Internet, and intermediate sanctions. The article also touches upon trends in liability insurance coverage for nonprofit organizations. Go to: www.nonprofitrisk.org
 

February 22 - 28, 2004

Five Trends that will Shape the Face of Philanthropy in the Coming Decade

This article poses five technology trends that nonprofits will encounter in the years to come including customer relationship management tools, application service providers, on-demand computing, Internet communities, and data analysis. Go to www.charitychannel.com
 

February 15 - 21, 2004

Five Cost-Cutting Trends for Human Service Organizations

According to a recent study to evaluate the impact of the economic downturn on leading health and human service organizations in Massachusetts, five cost-cutting trends are are emerging. According to Stacey Zelbow, a management advisory services senior associate with Grant Thornton who administered the study, “While the findings are specific to the greater Boston area, the trends may be indicative of what’s happening nationally within the social and human services sector.” Key findings include:

bullet Reductions are not limited to a particular human service sector.
bullet Staff salaries and benefits are expected to take the biggest hit.
bullet Large and small organizations are coping with budget cuts in different ways.
bullet A significant number of not-for-profits have already reduced services.
bullet Mergers are on the rise.

For more information on the survey, go to www.grantthornton.com or contact Stacey Zelbow at 617.848.4919


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