Sunday, October 29, 2006

WRITING IS HAVING TO SAY YOUR SORRY: BRUCE SIEVERS & NONPROFIT IDENTITY

Bruce Sievers & Nonprofit Identity
by pam ashlund

Every once in a while (I wish!) I find I’m guilty of a huge (unintentional) oversight; and last April was one of them. Specifically, it was March 21st & 22nd, at CAN’s Policy Day’s in Sacramento, CA. It was at that conference where I heard Bruce Sievers deliver the keynote address “A Tale of Three Cities: Government, Business, and Civil Society--a look into the increasingly fuzzy relationship between nonprofits, government, and business”.

It was after hearing his talk that I launched the NonProfit Eye and wrote my first post “Identity Crisis”. Since that day, I haven’t stopped struggling to address the ideas that sprang from that keynote. Bruce, on the understanding that I not use it in print, sent me his talk notes (which helped to re-inspire me long after the talk).

Today, I came across (yet another) blog (posted on 10/28) on the topic of Non-Profit Identity and I set out to track the coverage of that topic. I imagine that by the time CAN held it’s “Policy Days” event, that the topic had been in the public consciousness long before that. Without further adieu, here is a listing of posts on the topic (I’ve also created a Deli.cio.us tag: “NonProfitBusiness?”. Feel free to add to the tag topic):

Speaking of giving credit where credit is due…Sometimes I read something that I tag as “Icouldn’tsayitbetter” and that was the theme of Andrew Taylor’s blog: The Artful Manager. In his intro he asks “…what if…we fundamentally misunderstood what it meant to be run "like a business"?” (note, unlike Sievers, I credited Taylor in a post on 9/5/06).

Afterward: Just when I thought we had a real force going, I came across this AICPA (CPE Self-study course): Managing Nonprofit Organizations Like a Business

Summarized Bio:
Sievers, visiting Scholar at Stanford University, and former head of San Francisco's Walter and Elise Haas Fund, delivered the keynote address “A Tale of Three Cities: Government, Business, and Civil Society -- a look into the increasingly fuzzy relationship between nonprofits, government, and business”

Sievers also served as a panel member on the “Advisory Committee on Self-Regulation of the Charitable Sector”, Panel which produced a (now industry standard): Panel on the NonProfit Sector: Final Report (pdf, 740 kb).

I look forward to his forthcoming Book “Between Public and Private: Philanthropy, Civil Society, and the State of the Commons”


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