Governing Non-profit Collaboration: A Case Study of Bridging Internally and Between Five Danish Scouting Associations

Piet Papageorge

Student thesis: Master thesis


In my thesis, I explore the driving incentives behind the constant evolving collaboration and the current governance performance of the five Danish scouting associations and their joint-venture umbrella organization ‘Spejderne’. More specifically, I evaluate the incentives and governance performance by utilizing contemporary literature including non-profit collaboration theory, various consultant reports on the topic, and perspectives on bridging between collaborating civil society organizations. As anticipated, I discovered that through closer collaboration between the scouting associations, Spejderne has a potential to improve membership quality and organizational efficiency. More interestingly, I discover that Spejderne and the five individual scouting associations have facilitated networks, goal alignment, identity, etc. amongst the boards and the highly dedicated ‘elitist’ members; however they have failed to engage the lower organizational levels, which consists of volunteer members essential for the daily operations. I argue that Spejderne ought to apply of a wide range of my personal recommendations to either optimize the organization, help acquire the potential benefits, address the core issue of engaging and inspiring the lower organizational levels, or a combination of these. The disjointed lower organizational level identified at Spejderne, reflects the trend in contemporary literature that focuses on leadership and governance bridging between the collaborating civil-society organizations. Supported by this thesis, I emphasize the importance of ‘internal’ bridging, which engages and includes members on all levels. Thus, I find that internal bridging is equally important as bridging between organizations, in order to achieve a successful collaboration.

EducationsMSc in International Business and Politics, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2017
Number of pages87
SupervisorsEric Guthey