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04/Apr/2016

I am intrigued by Andrew Stern’s article in the latest Stanford Social Innovation Review titled, No Exit The Case for Nonprofit Holding Companies. It dovetails with our upcoming event in Philadelphia, Streamlining Social Good on April 28th. Stern’s premise is that nonprofits often hit a wall after 5-10 years when fundraising becomes more difficult and leadership transitions abound. In the for-profit sector there is an efficient system for harnessing the value in such an organization – companies are acquired by larger companies and derive benefits from the additional resources these strategic mergers offer. They don’t have to get to scale on their own, as is presumed in the nonprofit sector: Grow, Change or Die! Nonprofits don’t have a similar way to pivot and still retain their value.


Saul Ettlin, Thoreau Center for Sustainability
28/Mar/2016

There’s a lot of change brewing in the commercial real estate (CRE) world. From how we work to what a new generation of workers want from their workplace, these shifts are impacting the design and offerings of office space. Some of these trends are maturing (like the open plan) and new ones are coming on the scene (like hackable workspaces). What’s exciting is that much of the new thinking is aligned with the values that are already important to those of us who own and operate social purpose real estate and easily builds on our efforts to develop robust communities while providing affordable, quality workspace.


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Mena Gainpaulsingh
21/Mar/2016

Are you fundraising for an infrastructure, or umbrella organization, where your main activities centre around supporting other organizations to do their work? In a recent webinar for the Non-Profit Centres Network, I talked about some of the issues around raising funds for such organizations, and those that offer shared spaces in particular. Check out the challenges and solutions!


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14/Mar/2016

In addition to our work with shared space, we at NCN are also interested in the broader field of social purpose real estate. We define social purpose real estate as any real estate asset that is used for a mission greater than maximizing profits, which can range from public parks to libraries, from museums to affordable housing projects. One of the most overlooked social purpose real estate is affordable commercial space, the space necessary for nonprofits to operate in a community. In some cities, the market creates enough affordable spaces that this isn’t a big issue, but in other cities, (most notably San Francisco), nonprofits are being displaced or evicted when they can’t keep up with the going rates. Here are four ways that cities have stepped in to support their nonprofit sectors...


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Rima Zabian
07/Mar/2016

The role of a board in governing any organization cannot be overestimated. How the members of your board perform can make all the difference. In my experience, one of the most important components in creating and sustaining a healthy well-run co-work space is not only that board members understand what is expected of them in relation to the governance of the organization, but that they are also fully prepared to embrace their role.


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