Case studies suggest that important changes in the composition and structure of boards of trustees of non-profit organisations have occurred in recent decades. The nature of these changes, and how they may vary across industry and locale, are not well documented. This pilot study compares changes in structure and board membership of three elite non-profit organisations in two cities at three points in time: 1925, 1955 and 1985. This study focuses on governing boards of the major art museum, largest non-profit hospital and local United Way of Boston and Cleveland. Board members' biographical data are used to assess models of board diversification based on environmental pressures and changes in local elites. We find evidence that trusteeship varies historically, regionally and across industries, and we set the stage for broader-based empirical comparative work on changes in non-profit boards of trustees.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Business and International Management
- Sociology and Political Science
- Public Administration
- Strategy and Management