Operations management in the nonprofit sector
- The intersection of operations management and nonprofit studies creates valuable opportunities where similarities and differences between the for-profit and nonprofit sectors can be leveraged for both scientific and operational advances. This dissertation lies at this intersection, focusing on applying the theories and tools of operations and supply chain management in the nonprofit sector. With the nonprofit sector expanding and becoming more influential, it may be surprising that there is relatively little research, especially analytical research, involving nonprofit operations. Thus, the research described here represents some of the first efforts of what will hopefully be an emerging area within both disciplines. Since addressing the needs of underrepresented, underserved, and vulnerable populations is the central goal of many charitable nonprofit organizations, it is naturally intertwined with community-based operations research. Chapter 2, Operations Management in Community-Based Nonprofit Organizations, provides an overview of literature, potential research, and opportunities for applications from this perspective. Furthermore, this chapter gives a high-level outline of this dissertation by uncoupling nonprofit supply-side, production, and demand-side. In Chapter 3, Efficient Funding: Auditing in the Nonprofit Sector, we take a theoretical perspective of the relationship between funders and nonprofits and study the role of contracts in managing inefficiencies and nonprofit sector performance. In routinely scrutinizing nonprofit reports in efforts to deduce whether a nonprofit organization is efficient, funders may believe that they are, in fact, giving responsibly. However, we find that these nonprofit reports are unreliable, revealing that common funding methods do not facilitate efficient allocation of funds. In response, we develop audit contracts that put funders in a position to enact change, benefitting funders, the population of nonprofits, and the sector as a whole. Indeed, our conclusions indicate that nonprofits may want to work with funders to increase the use of auditing, consequently increasing efficiency and impacting society as a whole. Proceeding from this look at the nonprofit funding or supply-side, Chapters 4 through 7 examine the consumer- and production-sides by looking at local public health collaboration. Local public health departments are embedded in communities of potential partners where collaborative relationships form network links and, consequently, mobilize resources. While resources, information, and beneficiaries can flow into a local health department, they can also flow out. As such, community-based collaboration decisions become tactical operations decisions implying that local health departments can approach collaboration with specific strategies in mind, including revenue generation. From both chapters, we conclude that just as scholars must expand their concept of collaboration to incorporate setting, partners, activities, and combinations of these, practitioners must also ask "Who, " "With whom, " and "How?" when approaching their own collaboration portfolios. In thinking about collaboration strategically, local health department practitioners should begin strategizing with the question of "Why collaborate?" Here we offer revenue generation as a viable answer. However, we also conclude that "Who?, " "With whom?, " and "How?" are critical questions for getting the most from local health department collaboration portfolios in practice and genuinely understanding collaboration in future research. Ultimately, such research and practice focused on strategic collaboration may well help local health departments to leverage additional resources and better meet the needs of their communities. While operations management has not historically been applied to the nonprofit sector, traditional operations management models and solutions cannot simply be cut and paste. Thus, the sector is ripe with opportunity for operations management research and application; this dissertation represents some of the first fruits. Such research can result in more efficient supply chains and improved decision making for all nonprofit organizations with the most important effect of changed lives.
|Type of resource
|electronic; electronic resource; remote
|1 online resource.
|Privett, Natalie Ann
|Stanford University, Department of Management Science and Engineering
|Hausman, Warren H
|Lee, Hau Leung
|Hausman, Warren H
|Lee, Hau Leung
|Statement of responsibility
|Natalie A. Privett.
|Submitted to the Department of Management Science and Engineering.
|Thesis (Ph.D.)--Stanford University, 2010.
- © 2010 by Natalie Ann Privett
- This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 Unported license (CC BY-NC).
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