Quotation Maier, Florentine, Karner, Dominik, Litofcenko, Julia. 2018. The Life and Death of Nonprofit Associations: Exploring the Influence of Governance Arrangements. 13th ISTR International Conference, Amsterdam, Niederlande, 10.07-13.07.




Much has been written about the life and death of organizations, making it clear that the survival of organizations depends on environmental and organizational factors. This paper adds to this body of knowledge by investigating the effect of governance regulations on the survival chances of nonprofit associations. It contributes to a nuanced understanding of implications of isomorphism (or allomorphism, or automorphism) for organizational survival: Following arguments of Scandinavian institutionalism, we hypothesize that organizations that moderately adapt widespread governance regulations (allomorphism) will have higher chances of survival than organizations that follow their own idiosyncratic governance traditions (automorphism), or that carbon-copy widespread governance regulations (isomorphism). We examine these issues by using representative stratified longitudinal sample of 3000 active surviving and 3000 disbanded or inactive associations in Austria from 2006 to 2017. We find that as hypothesized by Scandinavian institutionalism, associations with allomorphic governance arrangements have higher survival chances than those with isomorphic bylaws. However, quite surprisingly from the perspective of institutional theory, we find that survival chances for organizations with automorphic, i.e., highly idiosyncratic, governance regulations are even higher. We close the paper with an outlook on further steps necessary to fine-tune the empirical analysis.


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Publication's profile

Status of publication Published
Affiliation WU
Type of publication Paper presented at an academic conference or symposium
Language English
Title The Life and Death of Nonprofit Associations: Exploring the Influence of Governance Arrangements
Event 13th ISTR International Conference
Year 2018
Date 10.07-13.07
Country Netherlands
Location Amsterdam


Maier, Florentine (Details)
Karner, Dominik (Details)
Litofcenko, Julia (Details)
Institute for Nonprofit Management IN (Details)
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