Fear the Government? A Meta-Analysis of the Impact of Government Funding on Nonprofit Advocacy Engagement

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Abstract

This article examines the impact of government funding on nonprofit participation in policy advocacy. Previous literature has proposed that government funding may either encourage or inhibit nonprofit involvement in policy advocacy. This study, using a meta-analysis of 38 existing studies with 218 effect sizes, finds a slight positive association between the level of government funding a nonprofit receives and the level of policy advocacy the nonprofit participates in. Government funding could be a weak catalyst, rather than an obstacle, for nonprofits to participate in the policy process. Furthermore, the study finds that this effect of government funding might be generalizable to non-U.S. countries. Government funding is also associated with nonprofits’ increasing use of insider advocacy strategy. Overall, government funding seems not a key predictor of the level of nonprofit advocacy engagement. Nonprofit leaders should not consider government funding a barrier for them to fulfill their critical advocacy obligations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)203-218
Number of pages16
JournalAmerican Review of Public Administration
Volume48
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Public Administration
  • Marketing

Keywords

  • government funding
  • meta-analysis
  • nonprofit advocacy
  • policy advocacy

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