Predicting Mission Alignment and Preventing Mission Drift: Do Revenue Sources Matter?

Ji Ma, Elise Jing, Jun Han

Abstract


Activities of nonprofit organizations do not always align with their missions, a managerial problem termed as “mission drift.” Mission drift is difficult to operationalize and quantify; thus, as a critical issue, only a few conceptual pieces or empirical case studies have explored this topic. This paper develops innovative measures to operationalize “mission alignment” using data science methodology, and examines the impact of revenue sources on mission alignment. By using the cosine similarity of text between a mission statement and program description, four measures of mission alignment are devised: the sum cosine similarity, average cosine similarity, weighted sum cosine similarity, and weighted average cosine similarity. Text analysis indicates that a majority of the programs evidence educational purposes, and for-profit business plays an important role in foundations’ projects and funding. The regression analysis shows that personal donation and service revenue can increase mission alignment,while organizational donation and membership dues decrease mission alignment.

非盈利组织的活动并不总是与其任务相一致,这种管理问题被称为“任务偏移”。任务偏移的量化较为困难,因此,即使其作为一个重要的管理问题,只有一部分概念类文章或者实证案例分析对该问题展开过研究。本文通过创新的数据科学的方法量化了任务偏移,并且检验了收入来源对于任务偏移的影响。通过运用任务概述和项目描述的文本的余弦相似性,本文建立了衡量任务一致的四项指标:余弦相似总和、平均余弦相似度、加权余弦相似度、以及加权余弦相似度。文本分析揭示,大多数项目都显示出教育目的,同时商业组织在基金会的项目和资金上发挥了重要作用。回归分析显示个人捐赠和服务收费会提升任务一致,但是组织捐赠和会员会费会起到相反的作用。


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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.22140/cpar.v9i1.173

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Chinese Public Administration Review (ISSN 1539-6754, Online ISSN 2573-1483)  is published by the Institute for Public Service at Suffolk University - Boston.