Alliance is pleased to announce the launch of its first online discussion on the subject of ‘Civil society vs markets – a false dichotomy?’
The need for greater effectiveness in the non-profit sector and for organizations to measure this is receiving growing attention. While no one seriously disputes that organizations should assess their work, the main ground of the debate has tended to become drawn away into a discussion about whether the values of civil society (the premium it puts on democracy, solidarity, social justice, dialogue, relationships, values) are in danger of being overrun by those of social capital markets (business principles, metrics, evidence, return on investment, numbers). Discussion has thus become polarized between proponents of either civil society or markets.
The aim of this online forum is to discuss whether such a polarization is misplaced, whether the two paradigms can be reconciled, and whether the real question should rather be how assessment of an organization’s work, in whatever form it takes, can be done in such a way that it takes full account of the organization’s purpose.
Tris Lumley, Head of Strategy at New Philanthropy Capital, and David Bonbright, founder and Chief Executive of Keystone, have provided the opening articles so click here to read their posts and please do add your own comment as we hope this will become a lively debate on this key issue.