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The Governance of Nonprofit Organizations

State University of New York via Coursera

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Overview

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This course examines the ways nonprofit boards and the volunteers that serve on them add positive value to their organizations. It also examines common issues that challenge nonprofit board effectiveness in the governance process. The course covers the governance environment in which boards and leadership volunteers operate.  

The aspect of the course that covers the “what” is the formal roles and responsibilities of boards whereas the “how” refers to the formal and non-formal approaches taken to carry out their roles vis a vis management of the organization. In addition to what and how, the course covers who, including leadership volunteers, board chairs, and chief executive officers (CEOs) with particular emphasis on developing leadership competency within the governance process.

Syllabus

Preview Week: Course Overview

Module 1: Nonprofit Organizations and Governance

  • Week 1: The Nonprofit Sector and Research
  • Week 2: Nonprofit Organizations and Governance   
  • Week 3: Board Authority and Role in Organizational Governance  
  • Week 4-5: Concept Testing, Assignment Submission, and Peer Learning Forums
Module 2: Nonprofit Boards and the Governance Process
  • Week 6: The Board's Role in Strategic Planning  
  • Week 7: The Board's Role in Performance Assessment
  • Week 8: The Board's Role in Fundraising and Resource Development
  • Week 9-10: Concept Testing, Assignment Submission, and Peer Learning Forums
Module 3: Factors that Influence the Effectiveness of the Governance Process
  • Week 11: Board Meetings, Structures and Procedures  
  • Week 12: Composition and Development of the Board
  • Week 13: The Informal Culture and Leadership of the Board
  • Week 14-15: Concept Testing, Assignment Submission, and Peer Learning Forums
Concluding Week 16: Board Effectiveness Semester Project Report Submission and Review  

Taught by

Yvonne Harrison and Vic Murray

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