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Lessons from Environmental Regulation for the Nonprofit Sector

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As the third sector’s economic and social impact grows worldwide, efforts by governments to regulate the sector have focused on increasing compliance in tax–exempt organizations. This article turns to the environmental sector for guidance, summarizing key characteristics of environmental regulation and noting what strategies are likely to prove useful for application to regulation of nonprofit organizations. The article finds some value in promotion of market–based enforcement schemes, but little value in promulgation of laws specifying governance structures and performance standards by a central authority. The most promising opportunity for improvement of the nonprofit regulatory process involves incorporation of financial incentives into monitoring schemes.
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Document Type: Original Article

Affiliations: University of Oregon

Publication date: September 1, 2002

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