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Patricia Webster

Doctor of Philosophy, (Development studies)
Study Completed: 2015
College of Humanities & Social Sciences


Thesis Title
The Marketisation of Charitable Organisations in Social Development

Read article at Massey Research Online: MRO icon

Charitable organisations working in the field of social development have experienced significant change since the 1980s. Social and technological change has combined with market-led government policies to change the nature of charitable organisations. Ms Webster examined the changes in three diverse organisations and identified the weakening of important charitable characteristics in all three organisations, particularly the diminishing of public voice, erosion of values and the weakening of associational life. She identified the increasingly hybrid nature of the organisations and constructed indicators of marketisation which showed that this hybridity arose from absorption of market characteristics. Ms Webster argued that while hybridity can strengthen the work of charitable organisations, many charitable characteristics are integral to their mission and widespread changes in characteristics can contribute to organisational mission-drift. Her research identified a loss of democratic practice and organisational voice in the organisations which has implications for the health of civil society.

Professor Regina Scheyvens
Associate Professor Robin Peace