Research on Volunteerism
Articles, book excerpts, and full PDF reports on this subject
- 2009 Volunteering in South Australia Report - In 2003, the South Australia Government co-signed a compact with the SA volunteering community. Each year since then, the SA Minister for Volunteers releases a report based on the commitment made in the compact and measuring the success of volunteering in that state against the SA government’s Strategic Plan. This is the 2009 report.
- Better Together: The Report of the Saguaro Seminar, Civic Engagement in America (2000)
- Bridging the Gap (2010), pan-Canadian research study about the changing culture of Canada’s voluntary sector, capturing what Canadians want in their volunteer experiences, their issues in finding satisfying volunteer roles, and what organizations can do to enhance their volunteer base, achieve their missions and ultimately build stronger communities.
- Challenges for the Future excerpted from "Beyond Social Capital: What Next for Voluntary Action Research?" in Volunteering and The Test of Time.
- Civic Health Index, produced annually by the National Council on Citizenship, measuring a wide variety of civic indicators.
- Community Treasures: Recognizing the Contributions of Older Immigrants and Refugees -Report from Temple University's Center for Intergenerational Learning on why and how older immigrants contribute to their families and communities and to identify promising practices that support the engagement of immigrant elders in meaningful roles (64-page PDF, 2008).
- Directory of Social Change (UK), February 2011 "Quick Survey Analysis" on the question: Which would most benefit your organisation, a £10,000 cash donation or an equivalent value in volunteers (or volunteer hours)? -- 91% chose the cash.
- Developing the Volunteer Motivation Inventory to Assess the Underlying Motivational Drives of Volunteers in Western Australia by Judy Esmond (2004, 82 pg PDF). Executive Summary also available.
- The Economic Value of Volunteering in Western Australia: Commissioned by the Department of Communities in Western Australia, this report gives some very interesting and specific data on the level and economic impact of volunteering in that state.
- Family Volunteering: A Discussion Paper - Volunteer Canada defines terms, describes how and why families engage in service, examines strategies and barriers to implement family projects, and includes an extensive bibliography.
- The "Global Associational Revolution," from Global Civil Society: Dimensions of the Nonprofit Sector
- The Happiness of Giving: The Time-Ask Effect, by Wendy Liu and Jennifer Aaker (2008-51 pg PDF), Center for Responsible Business. Concludes that people asked to volunteer give more money than those who are not.
- The Impact of Investing in Volunteers, by Ben Cairns and Romayne Hutchison from the Centre for Voluntary Action Research at Aston Business School (UK, 2006 - 40 pg. PDF)
- Is Volunteering Rewarding in Itself? By Stephan Meier and Alois Stutzer; academic research study from the Institute of Empirical Research in Economics at the University of Zurich (34-page PDF, 2004)
- Measuring Volunteering: A Practical Toolkit, by Independent Sector and UNV, designed as a toolkit to assist countries in conducting surveys assessing their national, regional, and local volunteer levels (2001, 40-pg. PDF).
- National Volunteering Strategy Consultation (Australia, 2010)
- Organizational Culture and Volunteer Programs, from the book At the Heart: The New Volunteer Challenges to Community Agencies
- Outcomes Study: Volunteers, a 2003 study conducted by the Boy Scouts of America exploring volunteers’ motivations and highlighting the benefits of volunteering. (PDF, 260KB)
- Patterns of Volunteering Over the Life Cycle, by Kevin Selbee and Paul B. Reed, Statistics Canada (2001)
- Power Skills – How Volunteerism Shapes Professional Success -
2006 study by Womens Way in Philadelphia shows how critical business skills, like problem solving, coaching/mentoring, and public speaking are developed and improved through volunteerism.
- Research on Volunteerism...What Needs to Be Done, article by Susan Ellis from the Journal of Voluntary Action Research (from 1985, but still very relevant)
- The Social Side of the Internet, 2010 report by the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project has found that 75% of all American adults are active in some kind of voluntary group or organization and Internet users are more likely than others to be active.
- The State of Health of Corporate Volunteering
19-page Executive Report in English, Spanish, Portuguese, and Russian (2011).
Research project of the Global Corporate Volunteer Council and IAVEdrawing on the experience, perspective and insights of leaders in corporate volunteering worldwide. There are two components – the Global Companies Study and the State of Health Study. More reports to come later in 2011.
- The Systems of Service : A collaborative report based on ideas
from the Service Jam, October 2010, produced by IBM, February 2011 (45 page report, PDF).
- Time and Money: An In-Depth Look at 45+ Volunteers and Donors, Executive Summary of 2003 study by AARP on the extent of volunteering by older Americans, including informal helping and attention to ethnic minorities.
- The 21st Century Volunteer: A report on the changing face of volunteering in the 21st Century , a 53-page document written by Elisha Evans and Joe Saxton of nfpSynergy for the Scout Association in the UK (you must register with nfpSynergy to download the report).
- Understanding Canadian Volunteers: Using the National Survey on Volunteering, Giving and Participating to Build Your Volunteer Program. This excellent 44-page guide demonstrates wonderfully how to apply research to practice by applying data in the National Survey to specific aspects of volunteer management. By Norah McClintock for the Canadian Centre for Philanthropy and Volunteer Canada (2004).
- Virtual Volunteering: Current Status and Future Prospects, by Vic Murray and Yvonne Harrison of the University of Victoria, 2002 study about online service in Canada (PDF)
- Volunteer Management Capacity in America’s Charities and Congregations: A Briefing Report -2004 study by the Urban Institute, UPS Foundation, the Corporation for National and Community Service, and the USA Freedom Corps (34 page PDF).
- Volunteer Transitions among Older Americans, by Barbara Butrica, Richard W. Johnson, and Sheila R. Zedlewski, from the Urban Institute (2007).
- Volunteering Among Young People, 2003 study by the Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement (CIRCLE).
- Volunteering and College Experience, 2009 report from CIRCLE, discussiing the finding that non-college-educated youth volunteer less than those with college.
- Volunteering and Employability - Report from the Institute for Volunteering Research (UK). Read an interview about this research, including ideas for practical implementation, on the Energize Book Blog.
- Volunteering for Mental Health - Report from the Institute for Volunteering Research (UK).
- Volunteering works: Volunteering and social policy - The Institute for Volunteering Research and Volunteering England, 2007.
- Volunteerism and Development , October 2003 issue of "Essentials," an evaluation report from the United Nations Development Programme.
- Volunteerism, Social Capital and Philanthropy In the Not-for-Profit Sector - The Forbes Funds -2002 study (47 pgs.)
- "Work without Wages: The Motivation for Volunteer Firefighters," by Alexander M. Thompson, III and Barbara A. Bono, in The American Journal of Economics and Sociology, July, 1993.
- Youth Helping America Series - Building Active Citizens: The Role of Social Institutions in Teen Volunteering - results of the Youth Volunteering and Civic Engagement Survey, consucted by the U.S. Census Bureau, Independent Sector, and the Corporation for National and Community Service in early 2005 (the first major national study of volunteering by American teenagers in more than a decade).
Web sites with useful articles on this subject
Civil Society section of Citizendium
Civil society is the "arena of uncoerced collective action around shared interests, purposes and values." This new wiki (2007) is being compiled by academic Roger A. Lohmann.
Corporation for National and Community Service Research and Policy Reports
Various reports and studies on volunteering in the US, especially on youth service and AmeriCorps.
The European Civil Society Student Corner
Site created to make civil society and third sector research easily available to PhD candidates and other students in Europe.
Growing to Greatness
(G2G): The State of Service-Learning Project http://www.nylc.org/inaction_init.cfm?oid=3698&null=1085585886405
Long-time advocate for service-learning, the National Youth Leadership Council has produced several detailed evaluation studies of the impact of student service, available as free downloads or for purchase in print.
The Leir Institute Volunteer Management Library
This library in Israel run by the organization Yad Sarah comprises over 2,000 items in print and online that relate to volunteer management, most in English. They have started posting academic articles on volunteerism to CiteULike, linked here.
National Council on Citizenship
Chartered by the U.S. Congress in 1953, NCoC tracks, measures and promotes civic participation and engagement in partnership with other organizations, focusing on ways to enhance history and civics education, encourage national and community service, and promote greater participation in the political process. Site offers many reports relevant to volunteerism, including the annual Civic Health Index that measures a wide variety of civic indicators.
This UK consulting and research firm provides free -- and well-written -- reports on many aspects of trends in nonprofit management, online charity outreach, and volunteering. You must register your e-mail address to download PDFs.
Site with research findings and reports on the voluntary sector in Canada, with many items on volunteering.
Regis University in Denver, Colorado has been amassing one of the field's largest online depositories " to collect, preserve, promote and encourage research and study in the field of volunteerism." Includes the Ivan Scheier Archive.
Summa de Voluntades
En esta bibliografa sucinta irn apareciendo peridicamente las ms recientes publicaciones sobre voluntariado social en lengua espaola. Regularmente sealaremos, dentro de esa bibliografa, el libro de actualidad: un trabajo que, por razones diversas, pueda considerarse como el ms representativo del perodo que cubre la bibliografa y a la que dedicaremos una pequea resea.
Volunteer Now (formerly Volunteer Development Agency - Northern Ireland)
Reasearch studies and reports developed in Northern Ireland, available for free download as PDFs.
Volunteering in America
New (2008) interactive site from the Corporation for National and Community Service, offering six years of data on volunteering, rankings of states and cities, and volunteer trends and demographic information for every state and 162 large and mid-sized cities.
Volunteers and Volunteering Research Collection
Resources developed from projects funded by the Canada Volunteerism Initiative's Knowledge Development Centre (2002 - 2007) and the International Year of Volunteers Research Program (2001 - 2002). Site provided by Imagine Canada.
World Volunteer Web -- International Research Studies
Extensive -- and intriguing -- list of studies on volunteerism in dozens of countries around the world, compiled by this site run through United Nations Volunteers.
Youth Civic Engagement
http://www.civicyouth.org/research/products/youth_index.htm Report analyzes a comprehensive survey of Americans' civic and political behavior from voting to volunteering, chronicles the differences between the generations, and takes the most in-depth look to date at the civic perspective and behavior of "Generation DotNet" (ages 15-25).
Relevant Hot Topic essays
- Wouldn't It Be Nice to Really Know.... - June '06
- A Great New Report to Praise, Criticize, and Use - March '04
- It's Time to Start Counting Volunteers Seriously - Dec '01
Bikinis and Volunteers: The New Independent Sector Study
on Giving and Volunteering - Nov '99
- Mystifying Data: Can America's Promise Get Away with It? - July '99
- What's the Mystery about Motivation? - Dec '98
information on this topic specifically relating to the Australasian
region please visit our friends at OzVPM
Online training for individuals, organizations or corporations to work successfully with volunteers. Learn more