The role of a national regulator in developing solutions to governance challenges in the not-for-profit sector.

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This article presents empirical evidence of the governance challenges faced by not-for-profit (NFP) organisations. Drawing on interviews and survey data, the paper explores perceptions of NFP leaders concerning governance challenges, drawing implications for theory and practice. The research shows that NFPs face internal and external contingencies that determine the effectiveness of governance systems. The study finds that considerable variation in the roles of boards exists. This has theoretical consequences as the usefulness of stewardship, agency, resource-dependence and stakeholder theory varies according to the directives of NFP boards, and it provides empirical evidence in favour of taking a contingency approach towards theories concerning NFP boards. The study further shows that director recruitment is challenging, particularly for NFPs with membership-based board models, as the constitution often determines a pool from which directors must be sourced.
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