Online from: 2005
Subject Area: Enterprise and Innovation
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|Title:||Autonomy and accountability in social services nonprofits: Japan and UK|
|Author(s):||Rosario Laratta, (The University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan)|
|Citation:||Rosario Laratta, (2009) "Autonomy and accountability in social services nonprofits: Japan and UK", Social Enterprise Journal, Vol. 5 Iss: 3, pp.259 - 281|
|Keywords:||Japan, Nonprofit organizations, Social services, United Kingdom|
|Article type:||Research paper|
|DOI:||10.1108/17508610911004331 (Permanent URL)|
|Publisher:||Emerald Group Publishing Limited|
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to describe two recent investigations of social services nonprofits (SSNs) in Japan and UK shed light on the subject of autonomy in relation to accountability.
Design/methodology/approach – This is effected through an exploration of questions such as: to what extent can we say that SSNs operate “autonomously” in Japan and UK? How do executives in these agencies perceive their own statutory organisation (SO)? To whom exactly are the SSNs accountable? What accountability mechanisms are in effect? How much time do these agencies spend on meeting the requirements of these accountability measures? Do SSN executives consider that accountability demands enhance or inhibit the ability of their organisation to fulfill its mission?
Findings – A close relationship is found between the way in which executive directors view downward accountability demands (accountability to clients or society at large) and the way they perceive SOs. From the discussion of the findings, it became apparent that Japanese executives, who approached downward accountability from its external dimension (i.e. the community at large), appeared to experience a more positive relationship with SOs than their British counterparts, who approached downward accountability almost exclusively from its internal dimension (i.e. in terms of their organisation's users), resulting in their perception of statutory accountability demands as a positive or negative influence on their organisation's mission.
Originality/value – This research makes an important contribution to the understanding of collaborative relations between government and nonprofits, as well as providing meaningful insights in the search for an alternative governance system for the provision of social services under a post welfare-state regime.
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