Who Funds Nonprofit Advocacy? Exploring the Associations Between Revenue Sources and Different Nonprofit Advocacy Tactics

33 Pages Posted: 15 Apr 2024

See all articles by Mirae Kim

Mirae Kim

George Mason University - Schar School of Policy and Government

Heather MacIndoe

University of Massachusetts Boston

Lewis Faulk

American University - Department of Public Administration and Policy

Date Written: March 20, 2024

Abstract

The nonprofit sector plays a vital democratic role via public policy engagement through advocacy, including lobbying. This study investigates the relationships between revenue sources and different forms of nonprofit engagement in public policy. Resource dependence theory suggests that nonprofit efforts to shape their environments through advocacy will be facilitated or constrained by organizations’ interactions with various funding sources. We find that issue advocacy and lobbying indeed are associated with various funding sources in different ways. Managerial capacity, including legal knowledge regarding advocacy, is also significantly associated with both advocacy and lobbying. Importantly, we find that the relationships between revenue sources and advocacy vary across subsectors and that government funding specifically is only associated with advocacy by human service nonprofits. Finally, we examine the association between different funding sources and a set of specific public engagement activities that generally fall under advocacy and lobbying definitions. Our findings demonstrate important nuances beyond the catch-all operationalizations of advocacy/lobbying and highlight the importance of interactions between nonprofits’ external sources of funding and their specific policy engagement activities.

Keywords: resource dependency, national survey, nonprofit advocacy, lobbying, policy engagement

Suggested Citation

Kim, Mirae and MacIndoe, Heather and Faulk, Lewis, Who Funds Nonprofit Advocacy? Exploring the Associations Between Revenue Sources and Different Nonprofit Advocacy Tactics (March 20, 2024). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4766613 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4766613

Mirae Kim (Contact Author)

George Mason University - Schar School of Policy and Government ( email )

Founders Hall, Fifth Floor
3351 Fairfax Drive, MS 3B1
Arlington, VA 22201
United States

HOME PAGE: http://https://schar.gmu.edu/profiles/mkim216

Heather MacIndoe

University of Massachusetts Boston ( email )

100 William T Morrissey Blvd
Boston, MA 02125
United States
6172874861 (Phone)

Lewis Faulk

American University - Department of Public Administration and Policy ( email )

4400 Massachusetts Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20016
United States

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