Acting in the public interest? Another look at research on nonprofit governance

Melissa M Stone, Francie Ostrower

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

169 Scopus citations


This article begins to fill gaps that currently exist between research on the governance of nonprofit organizations and research on public governance and focuses on how nonprofit governance research can benefit from insights in the public governance literature. As boundaries between nonprofit governance and public governance are increasingly fluid, our theoretical understanding as well as our empirical work on governance must expand to encompass these new relationships. The article summarizes the extant empirical literature on nonprofit governance and compares this research to emerging work on public governance. Drawing on this literature, the article specifically calls for research on nonprofit governance that (a) gives greater attention to the links between organizational governance and the public interest, (b) incorporates a broader view of governance as a process engaging multiple actors and taking place at multiple levels, and (c) links governance to accountability for results.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)416-438
Number of pages23
JournalNonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2007


  • Board of directors
  • Nonprofit governance
  • Public interest
  • Public management


Dive into the research topics of 'Acting in the public interest? Another look at research on nonprofit governance'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this