Understanding the third sector: Revisiting the prince, the merchant, and the citizen

Understanding the third sector: Revisiting the prince, the merchant, and the citizen requires not only a deep understanding for one’s area of enquiry but also a certain resolute intrepidity a pioneering fortitude. To do so for what we have come to refer to as nonprofit or nongovernment .organizations (NGOs) requires a bit more-an element of daredevil adventurism. Those who have taken such expeditions of faith have been quick to recognize the arduousness of their trek. At the very onset of their typological endeavor, Esman and Uphoff (1984, p. 58) warned that “almost anything that one can say about [NGOs or nonprorclts] is true-or false-in at least some instance, somewhere.” On a similar note, Cernea (1988, p. 9) observed that “the residual nature of the term itself offers such a broad umbrella for a kaleidoscopic collection of organizations, that attempts at simple definitions are quickly rendered meaningless.” Clark (1991, p. 40) all but gave up by starting from the premise that such organizations “do not comprise a tight community but a broad spectrum-too broad, perhaps, to leave the term with much meaning.” The problem, however, is broader than simply organizing a framework for the internal contours of this broad group of organizations. At the heart of the confusion is a lack http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Nonprofit Management & Leadership Wiley

Understanding the third sector: Revisiting the prince, the merchant, and the citizen

Nonprofit Management & Leadership, Volume 7 (2) – Dec 1, 1996

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Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
Copyright © 1996 Wiley Periodicals, Inc., A Wiley Company
ISSN
1048-6682
eISSN
1542-7854
DOI
10.1002/nml.4130070210
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

requires not only a deep understanding for one’s area of enquiry but also a certain resolute intrepidity a pioneering fortitude. To do so for what we have come to refer to as nonprofit or nongovernment .organizations (NGOs) requires a bit more-an element of daredevil adventurism. Those who have taken such expeditions of faith have been quick to recognize the arduousness of their trek. At the very onset of their typological endeavor, Esman and Uphoff (1984, p. 58) warned that “almost anything that one can say about [NGOs or nonprorclts] is true-or false-in at least some instance, somewhere.” On a similar note, Cernea (1988, p. 9) observed that “the residual nature of the term itself offers such a broad umbrella for a kaleidoscopic collection of organizations, that attempts at simple definitions are quickly rendered meaningless.” Clark (1991, p. 40) all but gave up by starting from the premise that such organizations “do not comprise a tight community but a broad spectrum-too broad, perhaps, to leave the term with much meaning.” The problem, however, is broader than simply organizing a framework for the internal contours of this broad group of organizations. At the heart of the confusion is a lack

Journal

Nonprofit Management & LeadershipWiley

Published: Dec 1, 1996

References

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