Mergers, Alliances, and Just Plain Cooperation

A Delicate but Necessary Dance

Designed by Kathleen Cerveny, senior program officer, The Cleveland Foundation; and Neal Cuthbert, program director, McKnight Foundation; presented by Kathleen Cerveny; Susan Kenney Stevens, Ph.D., executive principal, LarsonAllen Public Service Group; and John Yankey, Ph.D., Leonard W. Mayo professor, Mandel Center for Nonprofit Organizations, Case Western Reserve University.

For years, funders have urged collaboration and mergers among nonprofit organizations. Motivations range from lack of resources, perceived duplication of services, and desire for greater impact, among others. What prevents strategic alliances in the nonprofit community that are so common in other sectors? What conditions indicate that a merger or alliance would work or is something to avoid? Experts in this field talked with community-focused funders about the barriers within the arts, explored ideal conditions, and sought to define best practices for the funders' role.


   Mergers, Alliances, and Just Plain Cooperation (183Kb)