Umbrella Organisation for Swiss NPOs in the Social Sector

The non-profit organisations in the social sector of Switzerland play an important role for our society and economy, yet there is no umbrella-organisation which represents and supports the sector as there is in other countries or indeed other areas of Switzerland's economy. Why is this, how could an umbrella organisation look like and what could its duties include?

Loser Thomas & Bigler Bigler, 2018

Bachelor Thesis, Institut für Non-Profit- and Public Management, Hochschule für Wirtschaft FHNW
Betreuende Dozierende: Matthias Meyer
Keywords: umbrella organisation, non-profit, NPOs, social services, health sector, improvement, efficiency, exploratory research, third sector
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Currently, there is no sector-wide umbrella organisation for NPOs of the social sector in Switzerland. Instead there are various smaller umbrella organisations taking on similiar duties in the numerous, more narrowly defined interest areas. This situation arguably weakens the political influence of the sector and might also lead to inefficiencies in operational activities. Despite this, it is unknown why such an umbrella organisation has not been foundet and no existing research has been found. Therefore, conducting research on this matter could provide insights into the current structure of the sector, how it could be improved and what organisational approaches a possible sector-wide umbrella organisation would have to take.
In order to not only map out the sector itself in greater detail, but also to provide an understanding for ist environment as well as introducing case studies and management theories, a literature review was written. Afterwards an exploratory research in the form of qualitative interviews with leading exponents of organisations in the research area were conducted. The questions aimed at finding common interests and answers on how the current landscape could be improved or how an umbrella organisation could be organised ans financed. The interviews were analysed, the results presented and discussed and conclusions made. Finally, the authors formulated suggetions regarding further actions in research.
The results showed that the perceived overlap of interests in the whole social sector is rather small, which leads to relatively strong scepticism towards the idea of a sector-wide umbrella organisation. The satisfaction of the organisations with the current set-up is relatively high, especially concerning outsourced services such as IT or education. Furthermore, the political impact of a possible sector-wide body has been questioned. Nevertheless, some possible fields of action were identified, such as promoting the NPO's work among society, screening the environment to provide NPOs with briefings and solutions or offering advices in operational or legal questions. Furthermore, the insights into the collaborations between NPOs unveiled a somewhat unclear structure, which offers possibilities for improvement. This thesis provides the client with a feeling for the sentiment of the sector regarding the foundation of a sector-wide umbrella organisation. Furthermore, it provides insights into the various forms of collaborations existing and also gathered basic knowledge on what difficulties such a body could face or how it could look like. For the institute of non-profit and public management, this might contribute to a more specific design for further research activities.
Studiengang: Business Administration International Management (Bachelor)
Fachbereich der Arbeit: Andere
Vertraulichkeit: öffentlich
Art der Arbeit
Bachelor Thesis
Institut für Non-Profit- and Public Management, Hochschule für Wirtschaft FHNW, Basel
Autorinnen und Autoren
Loser Thomas & Bigler Bigler
Betreuende Dozierende
Matthias Meyer
Sprache der Arbeit
Business Administration International Management (Bachelor)
Standort Studiengang
umbrella organisation, non-profit, NPOs, social services, health sector, improvement, efficiency, exploratory research, third sector