Nonprofit Management Education Down Under: Challenges and Opportunities

Sagamore Journals
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of Nonprofit Education and Leadership, 2015, 5 (4), pp. 219 - 243
Issue Date:
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In this article, we will explore the context within which two significant nonprofit management education programs developed in Australia and New Zealand. These tertiary education programs grew with relatively little reference to each other, yet both responded to nonprofit sector needs with similarities of vision and adult education philosophy and practice. Over time, the Australian program, based in a university business school, has been focused more on postgraduate programs, research, and more recently, social entrepreneurship and measuring social impact. The New Zealand program, with roots in a community development school, has grown with wide geographic coverage, alongside customized delivery for MÄ ori and Pacific communities. Nonprofit sector, cultural, institutional, and wider contextual factors have played a part in shaping their current forms of delivery. Just as the nonprofit sector is characterized by a high degree of diversity in terms of organizational form, industry, and organizations, these programs have responded in different ways to multiple and diverse stakeholder influences. Given the size, significance, and growth of the sector, the uptake across all programs is smaller than expected in either country. Why is this so? In this article, we will examine the growth of the first accredited tertiary education programs in Australia and New Zealand and highlight the challenges and opportunities of delivering nonprofit management education in this region.
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