Q&A via Professor John Casey, Associate Professor at the Baruch College School of Public Affairs, and also FLiP correspondent Marianna Tu


Marianna Tu (MT): Your course “The Management of International Nonprofit Organizations” is the initially Baruch course focused specifically on the worldwide dimensions of the nonprofit sector. What was the inspiration behind this course and why is now the best time for it?

John Casey (JC): It was a happy confluence of students’ demands and also my interests. Baruch has actually a great public and nonprofit monitoring regimen, however the focus was very much on New York City and also the USA. Students were asking for more international content and I was one of the brand-new professors hired to help give the college a wider perspective. I asked for the opportunity to teach around my experience with global nonrevenues and also the committee that decides on our curriculum conveniently agreed. Many type of of our students presently job-related in international nonprofits, or hope to job-related in them later.

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MT: You discussed at a current Baruch event that many type of students involved you via the goal of not only working for an worldwide nonprofit, however actually starting their own. What is vital for students to recognize prior to they take into consideration undertaking such an effort?

JC: Not just students come to me. I get a secure trickle of people from the basic public that call me to speak about their plans for a brand-new nonprofit. I never refusage a request to accomplish, as I think it is a function of the university to reach out to the community, and also I am personally interested in people’s motivation for beginning new organizations.I’ve occurred some planning products I now provide to human being that want to begin an international nonprofit. The materials start through 5 “simple” questions:

Why a NEW nonprofit? (What existing institutions are working in this or related area/s issues? AND, Why are they not doing a good job?)Why a NONPROFIT? (Why not a for-profit enterpincrease or consultancy?)Will you be completing for funds through existing nonprofits? (Are you going to generate new resources of funds that will add to the pool obtainable to nonprofits? Why must you be taking funds from various other organizations?)What contacts carry out you have actually through the tarobtain nation or region? (How deserve to you ensure the cultural appropriateness, local buy-in, and physical safety and security of your nonprofit operations in one more country?)What are your qualifications to be a “CEO”? (What studies/suffer perform you have actually in leadership, budgeting, personnel administration, strategic management… etc?)

If you don’t have compelling answers to those inquiries, you could want to reassess your plans.

MT: What are other ways students can channel their energy? How have the right to they prevent redoubling efforts and also sign up with a coordinated network?

JC: My default place on the question of whether someone have to start a brand-new organization is DON’T DO IT. Unmuch less you deserve to demonstrate that no one else is doing or can perform what you want to perform, and also that you have actually the abilities and also endure to assume the substantial transactivity cost of developing and also sustaining a brand-new organization, you need to job-related via existing organizations. If you have actually a great concept, volunteer via an company that functions in that field and also then convince them to hire you to implement it.

MT: You have taught courses in Spain, Australia, and the US, and have operated approximately the world. What is distinctive around teaching this course in America, and also what is distinctive about the Amerideserve to watch on worldwide nonprofits?

JC: Let’s begin with the Amerihave the right to check out on nonrevenues. For better or worse, there is no various other country that has a nonprofit sector that is so crucial to so many facets of modern life. For instance in the USA, I listen to National Public Radio, which is a nonprofit company and frequently asks listeners for contributions. When I visit my family members in Australia, I listen to their public radio network, the Australian Broadspreading Commission which, prefer the UK BBC, is a government-run corporation which is funded by taxpayers and also its very own revenue-generating activities. Tright here is a nonprofit called the Friends of the ABC yet its major function is to lobby government to ensure that the ABC continues to get a enough level of public funding.

The US perspective on the balance between federal government solutions and also nonrevenues pervades much of the global work-related by US nonrevenues. They assume that exclusive initiative is always much better than government initiatives, but in many kind of nations it is crucial to focus on building federal government establishments. Tright here is a civil society paradox: for tbelow to be a colorful independent nonprofit sector, you have to have actually a solid autonomous federal government to assistance it, yet some people seem to believe that if you develop nonprofit capacity, government will certainly take treatment of itself.

So here in the US, I make sure I start this course through a comparative area that looks at the nonprofit sector in various nations and also under various political regimes.

MT: These nationwide policies must influence business operations and also activities favor fundelevating, which is an essential component of any nonprofit’s success. How does fundincreasing readjust once taking care of an international organization?

JC: First of all we regularly simply don’t know the rules. For example, do you understand if a foreigner have the right to case a taxation deduction for a contribution to a US 501(c)3, or if a US citizen deserve to insurance claim a taxes deduction for contributing to a international charity? The US citizen mainly can’t (check out here), and whether the foreigner can depends on the taxes law of their residence country, which probably additionally doesn’t permit it.

But even more importantly, there are considerable political and social ramifications once funds cross boundaries. When a foreign federal government or structure funds an organization in the USA we are apprehensive about possible external interference. Yet, in many arising nations, most likely 90% of the funds that regional charities obtain come from external the country. Those federal governments are understandably wary about the impact.

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MT: We have actually spoken about the partnership between the nonprofit and also government sectors, however what around intersections via the personal sector? For instance, you have composed on the complexities of nonprofit company ventures. Today, through the rise of charitable investment funds, social enterprises and also “philanthrocapitalism,” exactly how execute you view the international nonprofit landscape changing? What does the future hold?

JC: I am a professor of nonprofit administration. I believe nonprofit establishments must be better regulated than many kind of currently are: or if you want, we can say they need to be even more “businesslike” in the famous sense of the expression.

But I am very cynical about many of the clintends of the false prophets of sector remedies to social concerns. I am specifically irritated by those that claim that “social enterprise” means an interesting new service method that will certainly relocation the sthelp, inefficient standard nonprofit sector. In fact, the business plans of 90% of the social enterprises I have viewed involve immediately creating a 501(c)3 nonprofit to compete for philanthropic funds and also federal government contracts. In a lot of situations, they are not brand-new or more efficient approaches; they are just more effective in marketing a brand also to funders, especially to personal donors that might have been their classmates back at college. The best social enterprises I have actually checked out are the initiatives of existing nonearnings through strong roots in their constituencies.

In the economic bubble years, if you expressed concern about undue market influence in nonprofits you were branded a dinosaur or a naïve do-gooder. Now that we are in a period of crisis, the balance of the conflict has adjusted. People are turning ago to more establiburned institutions that can show a lengthy track record of successful outcomes.

I very recommfinish that anyone interested in the philantrocapitalism dispute check out Michael Edward’s brand-new book Small Change, Why Business Won’t Save the World.

MT: No matter which direction the field goes in, it seems clear from your course that more and more students will look to enter it. What are 3 things one have to know when searching for employment in an global nonprofit?

JC: First, that it is an widening area. For a range of reasons the nonprofit sector has grown in practically every nation in the civilization and also tright here is raising connectivity in between nonearnings globally. Whether we are talking about aid organizations or global professional associations, there are even more of them and even more opportunities.

2nd, that it can be tough to break right into the sector. All employers currently want candidays to show some prior endure, even if that was unified via their studies, and also that can be especially tough as soon as we are talking about global organizations. Most skilled help workers invested years as travelers and volunteers prior to they got a passist position.

Third, that it is fun and also rewarding, however the personal costs have the right to be high. By interpretation it usually requires a lot of travel and also possibly extfinished continues to be overseas. Are you all set to be an “expat,” living amethod from friends and family members for years at a time?

MT: Right, the expert suffer is inseparable from the influence on one’s private life. Individuals will certainly additionally have to navigate unacquainted opinions on matters such as household or gender; have the right to you tell us how something prefer sex can aspect right into functioning for an worldwide nonprofit?

JC: Woguys tfinish to be the majority of employees in all levels of nonrevenues, except at the highest possible executive level – the reason why is a entirety various other discussion. The exact same is true in worldwide nonrevenues, so tbelow are many kind of opportunities. But likewise many kind of challenges, as worldwide occupational entails relations with some nations wright here womales do not enjoy the very same rights as they carry out in Western democracies – womales might hold positions of power in Normeans, New Zealand also and also Iceland, however in many various other countries they can’t drive or be in the public agency of a male that is not part of their household. In the majority of nations it’s simply not common to view female supervisors and leaders, so women working in worldwide nonprofits must have even much better skills at negotiating social unpredictabilities than their male colleagues.

MT: Before we wrap up, execute you have actually any type of last advice for young human being interested in worldwide nonrevenues that are looking to enter the sector? Are tbelow any type of vital abilities they must develop?

JC: If we are talking around functioning abroad, the many vital competency is the willingness and also courage to job-related in unspecific and also sometimes dangerous instances. Are you ready to work in a European country wbelow you don’t speak the language fluently? Are you ready to challenge the discomfort and hazard of working in the emerging world?

You likewise need to demonstrate a willingness to learn about and understand also various other societies. The the majority of evident marker of that is whether you soptimal another language. English is currently the the majority of typically embraced language of international interactions, yet it will just acquire you so far. If you don’t soptimal a 2nd language, functioning in global institutions may be out of your reach. Even if you don’t need that second language for your daily work, it reflects you have actually the cross-cultural perspective that international nonearnings call for.

To learn more around John Casey please visit

For concerns or comments relating to this feature, please contact Marianna Tu at mtu