WEEKLY NEWS DIGEST (March 17-23, 2014)

March 24th, 2014

Hauser Institute for Civil Society, Center for Public Leadership, Harvard University

The nonprofit sector — the universe of associations, civil society, philanthropy, and voluntary action — is the most rapidly growing and changing organizational domain in the world.

Once considered an adjunct of government, over the past half century nonprofits have taken on many of the tasks of government and play key roles in the process of public governance, not only as sources of policy and vehicles for advocacy and political mobilization, but also as providers of a wide range of public services.

Because nonprofits operate in virtually every industry and in many jurisdictions — global, national, state, and local –, it is extraordinarily difficult to track significant the emerging issues and trends that affect them. This difficulty is compounded by the fact that press coverage of nonprofits is fragmentary and often shallow and because scholarship is highly specialized and balkanized.

Through weekly global surveys of major newspapers, periodicals, broadcast media, and on-line news sources, this blog brings to readers’ attention important stories and will, through commentaries, link those news accounts to pertinent scholarship in order to offer in-depth understanding of important emerging issues and trends. The blog will also take note of scholarly books and articles of potential significance to practitioners, policy makers, and other thoughtful readers.

Using Nonprofit News & Comment

Blog entries appear as “Weekly News Summaries” — compilations of news article headlines. Each entry includes a link to the original source and the full text of the story. Because of the on-going monetization of on-line newspapers and other media, full texts may not be available for all stories.

Stories relating to the United States are organized topically by type of organization or activity. International stories are organized by country and, in certain instances, by topic (such as “Catholic Sex Abuse Scandal” and “Sustainable Development”). All stories are archived by topic and date.

Contact Us

Comments or questions about Nonprofit News & Comment should be directed to Peter Dobkin Hall, Senior Research Fellow, Hauser Institute for Civil Society, Center for Public Leadership, Harvard University.

WEEKLY NEWS DIGEST (March 17-23, 2014)

March 24th, 2014


Supreme Court faces wave of free-speech cases from conservatives; Once embraced by liberals, 1st Amendment arguments are now being applied to contest campaign contribution limits, union dues and no-protest zones at abortion clinics.” By David G. Savage. Los Angeles Times. March 20, 2014. For decades, liberals wielded the 1st Amendment to protect antiwar activists, civil rights protesters and government whistle-blowers. These days, however, the Constitution’s protection for free speech and religious liberty has become the weapon of choice for conservatives. This year’s Supreme Court term features an unusual array of potentially powerful 1st Amendment claims, all of them coming from groups on the right. And in nearly every case, liberal groups — often in alliance with the Obama administration — are taking the opposing side, supporting state and federal laws that have come under attack for infringing upon the rights of conservatives. The free-speech challenges include cases on campaign contribution limits, no-protest zones in front of abortion clinics and mandatory union dues for public employees. At the same time, devout Christian employers are claiming their religious liberty should entitle them to an exemption from a provision in President Obama’s healthcare law requiring that full contraceptive coverage be offered to female employees. And waiting on deck is a free-speech appeal from a Christian photography company challenging a New Mexico state law that bars businesses from discriminating against gays and lesbians. Conservatives and libertarians say the role reversal at the high court reflects a larger shift in political alliances and attitudes toward government. . . . The trend may also reflect the shifting ideological leanings of the high court. Five of the nine justices are Republican appointees, and conservatives are betting that they will be more receptive to appeals from the right, especially on matters of free speech. “This court has been very protective of the 1st Amendment in a whole range of cases,” Shapiro said. “So activists and lawyers know that if they can frame the challenge as a free-speech claim, they are more likely to succeed. If you are appealing to Justice [Anthony M.] Kennedy, you have a much better chance if you are making a libertarian argument.”

WEEKLY NEWS DIGEST (March 17-23, 2014)

March 24th, 2014


Hollywood Conservatives Are Granted Tax-Exempt Status.” By Michael Cieply. New York Times. March 17, 2014.

Who Controls the Kochs’ Political Network? ASMI, SLAH and TOHE; Obscure limited liability companies have ultimate say over the Koch network’s nonprofits, which spend hundreds of millions of dollars to advance conservative causes.” By Kim Barker and Theodoric Meyer. ProPublica.org. March 18, 2014.
Related stories:
Koch brothers group to launch attack on Udall in Colorado.” Washington Post. March 17, 2014.
Koch Brothers’ Cash Reigns Supreme In The Battles Of 2014.” By Paul Blumenthal. Huffington Post. March 20\, 20\14.
Koch Group, Spending Freely, Hones Attack on Government.” New York Times. March 21, 2014.

The rich strike back; The effectiveness of the populist approach is coming into question.” By Ben White and Maggie Haberman. Politico.com. March 18, 2014.

This Chart Shows How Little We Really Know About Where Political Money Comes From.” By Kathleen Miles. Huffington Post. March 19, 2014.

WEEKLY NEWS DIGEST (March 17-23, 2014)

March 24th, 2014


Small changes add up at the MFA.” By Sebastian Smee. Boston Globe. March 17, 2014.

“David Skorton, Cornell University’s highly regarded president, is to lead the Smithsonian.” By Manuel Roig-Franzia. Washington Post. March 18, 2014.

“Museums Special Section.” New York Times. March 30, 2014.
Museums Special Section: Wooing a New Generation of Museum Patrons
Museums Special Section: Door to Art of the World, Barely Ajar
Museums Special Section: New Insights Into History May Skew the Big Picture
Museums Special Section: Golden Age of Discovery … Down in the Basements
Museums Special Section: At Play in Skies of Cretaceous Era
Museums Special Section: Start-Up Success Isn’t Enough to Found a Museum
Museums Special Section: After the Exhibition, Finding New Uses for Displays
Museums Special Section: Soliciting Funds From the Crowd? Results Will Vary
Museums Special Section: Motown’s Link to Civil Rights Movement on Display
Museums Special Section: Remembering the ‘Black Fives’ of Pro Basketball
Museums Special Section: Is There a Doctor in the Exhibition?
Museums Special Section: Shedding a Light on Islamic Art’s Great Treasure
Museums Special Section: What Comes Next, After the Troops Are Dismissed
Museums Special Section: Monuments Man in War, Conservationist in Peace
Museums Special Section: Minnesota Makes Do Without a Civil War Battlefield
Museums Special Section: Entering World of Literature’s Great Sleuth
Museums Special Section: In Washington, 100 Examples of the Epitome of Cool
Museums Special Section: In Boston, Altering the Artist-in-Residence Concept
Museums Special Section: If You Can’t Make It to the Lecture
Museums Special Section: The Met’s Director Looks Ahead
Museums Special Section: Exhibition Traces a Career Dedicated to Mutability
Museums Special Section: Warming Up to the Culture of Wikipedia
Museums Special Section: Breaking From Donor Dependence

MOCA director steers a steady course; Exhibition planning and fundraising will take time, Philippe Vergne says as he and the Museum of Contemporary Art board begin work.” By Mike Boehm. Los Angeles Times. March 20\, 2014.


“San Diego Opera will close, in ‘a sign of the times’; The departure reflects the increasing challenge of funding arts programs.” By David Ng. Los Angeles Times. March 21, 2014.

WEEKLY NEWS DIGEST (March 17-23, 2014)

March 24th, 2014


Big Money Upends a Festival: South by Southwest Festival Starts to Feel Corporate.” By John Pareles. New York Times. March 17, 2014.

WEEKLY NEWS DIGEST (March 17-23, 2014)

March 24th, 2014



Mayor De Blasio’s Full Plate: Charter Schools.” Editorial. New York Times. March 17, 2014.

Illogical hostility toward charter schools.” By Richard Cohen. Washington Post. March 18, 2014.


AltSchool gets $33 million in venture capital.” By Jill Tucker. San Francisco Chronicle. March 18, 2014.


Institutional investors optimistic about 2014.” By Adrian Rodrigues. Yale Daily News. March 17, 2014.

Biz-school courses focus on giving back; Student demand leads to increase in social-enterprise programs.” By Anne Field. Crain’s New York Business. March 18, 2014.

Free Isn’t Easy for Higher Ed; Private Schools Push Back at Tennessee Plan for No-Cost Community College.” By Cameron McWhirter and Caroline Porter. Wall Street Journal. March 20, 2014.

New Princeton President Is Still ‘Listening’; Christopher Eisgruber Faces Issues Such as a Contentious Relationship With Surrounding Township.” By Heather Haddon. Wall Street Journal. March 22, 2014.


NY Schools: New Basis School Arrives in Brooklyn, Loudly; Co-Founder Michael Block Claims His School Can Provide Better Education at Much Lower Price.” By Sophia Hollander. Wall Street Journal. March 18, 2014.

WEEKLY NEWS DIGEST (March 17-23, 2014)

March 24th, 2014


Partners to delay acquisition of South Shore Hospital.” By Robert Weisman. Boston Globe. March 20, 2014.

WEEKLY NEWS DIGEST (March 17-23, 2014)

March 24th, 2014



Charities beg to save their regulator from the chop.” By Gareth Hutchens and Judith Ireland.” Sydney Morning Herald. March 18, 2014.

Australian child poverty up, generosity takes a beating.” By Dan Harrison. Sydney Morning Herald. March 19, 2014.


FGM, Clitoraid and The Pleasure Hospital: US sect the Raëlians’ quest to ‘restore’ women scarred by female genital mutilation in Burkina Faso; A clinic built with money from Western supporters of the Raëlians lies empty as Burkina Faso’s victims of female genital mutilation queue desperately for reconstructive surgery.” By Sue Lloyd-Roberts. Independent. March 17, 2014.


Canadian Govt Targets Environment NGOs.” By Paul Weinberg. Interpress Service (ipsnews.net). March 18, 2014.


Royal Commission: Monsignor admits swearing ‘deceptive’ affidavit.” By Catherine Armitage. Sydney Morning Herald. March 17, 2014.
Related story:
“Royal Commission: George Pell was calling all the shots.
Sydney Morning Herald. March 18, 2014.
Royal commission: Email had tried to pin blame on John Ellis.” Sydney Morning Herald. March 21, 2014.
Royal commission: Pell instructed lawyers to fight Ellis claim ‘tooth and nail’.” Sydney Morning Herald. March 22, 2014.
Pope Names Members of Anti-Abuse Group.“. New York Times. March 23, 2014.
Pope Names Former Victim To Sex Abuse Panel.” Morning Edition/National Public Radio. March 23, 2014.


Religion and Conservation Do Mix; Bradnee Chambers, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Environment Programme’s Convention on Migratory Species of Wild Animals, believes wildlife conservation is a goal that religions must take on.” By Bradnee Chambers. Interpress Service (ipsnews.net). March 17, 2014.


NGO Helps Illuminate Opaque World Of Global Finance.” Morning Edition/National Public Radio. March 19, 2014.


Wealth Over Work.” Op-ed. By Paul Krugman. New York Times. March 23, 2014.


Reform or be disbanded, Co-op board is warned.” By Andrew Clark. Times of London. March 17, 2014.

Wave of Sexual Abuse Allegations for Private Boys’ Schools in Britain.” By Stephen Castle. New York Times. March 17, 2014.

Britain’s five richest families worth as much as poorest 20 per cent, says Oxfam.” By Kunal Dutta. Independent. March 17, 2014

Inequality ‘costs Britain £39bn a year’; Thinktank puts a figure on the annual cost of the gap between rich and poor and calls for politicians to act.” By Tracy McVeigh. Observer. March 17, 2014.

I long for the day when every business is a social enterprise; We urgently need robust firms that prove you can make a positive contribution to society, says .” By Margaret Heffernan. Guardian. March 17, 2014.

“Charities need to make use of their experts – their service users; Sense’s deputy chief executive explains why beneficiaries must be involved in every step of development and innovation.” By Richard Kramer. Guardian. March 17, 2014.

Can co-ops compete … in capital? In the final instalment of our can co-ops compete series, Andrew Bibby discusses the difficult relationship between co-operative businesses and investors including those involved in the recent Co-operative Group upheaval.” By Andrew Bibby. Guardian. March 18, 2014.

Food banks are filling gaps left by jobcentres and the DWP; While the government insists the voluntary sector forms no part of the welfare system, the chief executive of Trussell Trust argues food banks fill the gaps caused by welfare reforms.” By Chris Mould. Guardian. March 18, 2014.

Why social enterprises should be celebrating on budget day; Matt Mead explains that although much needs to be done, the government’s steps to help social entrepreneurs need to be celebrated.” By Matt Mead. Guardian. March 19, 2014.

How-to guide: involving your charity’s service users; By involving service users in your work, you can feel more secure that you are responding accurately to their needs.” By Freddie Yauner and Cassandra White. Guardian. March 19, 2014.

The NHS is being put up for sale to private healthcare companies; The health service as we know it is being transformed before the eyes of patients and staff.” By Rachael Maskell. Guardian. March 20, 2014.


“What charities can learn from Lady Gaga’s Born this Way Foundation; Amid accusations that Lady Gaga’s charity spent more than a million dollars on legal fees, consulting and publicity, Joe Saxton explains how to avoid falling into the same PR trap.” By Joe Saxton. Guardian. March 20, 2014.

“‘Chuggers’ are bonafide employees, not the charity sector’s dirty little secret; Public perception has changed and the sector itself now needs to accept street fundraisers as fully-fledged professionals.” By Rory White. Guardian. March 21, 2014.

Etonians stand up for their old school.” By Greg Hurst. Times of London. March 22 2014.

Charity shops: what’s in store? In our recent Q&A, our expert panel discussed the future of charity retail including the role of online shopping and how to maximise what you have.” By Charlotte Seager. Guardian. March 22, 2014.

WEEKLY NEWS DIGEST (March 17-23, 2014)

March 24th, 2014


The Strange Bedfellows of the Anti-Contraception Alliance; Evangelicals and Catholics didn’t always share the same views on contraception and abortion. A look at how their alliance came to be and how it’s shaping crucial legal battles.” By Amelia Thomson-DeVeaux. American Prospect. March 17, 2014.

Bill on anonymous political donations faces a test in state Senate; The legislation, which would require greater disclosure about individuals who fund groups, can pass only if at least one Republican supports it.” By Patrick McGreevy and Melanie Mason. Los Angeles Times. March 17, 2014.

Senator Looney proposes changes to Connecticut’s PILOT program.” By Mary E. O’Leary. New Haven Register. March 18, 2014.
Related story:
PILOT Pitchers Vow To Keep Up Pressure.” New Haven Independent. March 18, 2014.
Harp Picks Looney’s PILOT Proposal Over Sharkey’s.” By Christine Stuart. New Haven Independent. March 19, 2014.

Salvation Army Settles Lawsuit on Religious Discrimination.” By Sharon Otterman. New York Times. March 19, 2014.

A Special Prosecutor for the IRS; Despite her denials, it’s now plain that Lois Lerner was deeply involved in targeting conservative nonprofit groups.” By Jim Jordan. Wall Street Journal. March 20, 2014.
Related stories:
Justice Department rejects Ted Cruz’s IRS probe request.” By Katie Glueck. Politico.com. March 20, 2014.
Eric Holder declines Ted Cruz’s request for special prosecutor in IRS case.” Washington Post. March 21, 2014.

Supreme Court faces wave of free-speech cases from conservatives; Once embraced by liberals, 1st Amendment arguments are now being applied to contest campaign contribution limits, union dues and no-protest zones at abortion clinics.” By David G. Savage. Los Angeles Times. March 20, 2014.

In Healthcare Suit Against Catholic Bishops, the Specter of an Early Defeat; The ACLU’s case against the U.S. Bishops Conference – heralded by some as a bold legal stroke – could be thwarted on procedural grounds.” By Nina Martin. ProPublica,org. March 20, 2014.

Oklahoma Billionaire Takes Health-Law Challenge to Supreme Court; Hobby Lobby’s founder objects to the health law, but the government says for-profit companies aren’t entitled to religious-freedom protections.” By Janet Adamy. Wall Street Journal. March 22, 2014.
Related story:
Crying Wolf on Religious Liberty.” Editorial. New York Times. March 23, 2014.

WEEKLY NEWS DIGEST (March 17-23, 2014)

March 24th, 2014


Al Jerome stepping down as head of troubled public TV station KCET.” By Scott Collins. Los Angeles Times. March 18, 2014.

A Website Asks Readers to Finance Independent Journalists.” By Sydney Ember. New York Times. March 20, 2014.