FSD2267 Finnish Local Government 2004: Non-Governmental Organisations 2002

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  • Helander, Voitto (Åbo Akademi University)


associations, cooperation, decision making, financing, local government officers, local government services, membership, municipalities, organizations, participation, social economy, social influence, voluntary work


In this study, the activities of various non-governmental and voluntary organisations (third sector organisations) were surveyed. The topics included their financing, members, means of influencing, and forms of activity.

First, the respondents were asked about their organisations' area of operation, membership in a nationwide union or association, cooperation with other organisations and central organisations, motive for action, and focus of activity. Some questions concentrated on the members in the organisations and their number and nature (i.e. whether they were individuals or communities), their age and sex distribution, and changes in their number and activity. The respondents were also asked about the number of full-time and part-time employees working in the organisation, as well as the number of employees hired with the help of employment subsidies. In addition, the respondents evaluated the distribution of work load among the employees.

Further questions covered the economy of the organisations. The respondents gave their views on their organisations' expenditure, sources of income, and financial and non-financial support. They were also asked whether their organisations owned a company, foundation, premises, or other properties or shares, and whether their organisations had received facilities at their disposal for free or under the market price.

The respondents gave their opinions on their organisations' interaction and intra-action. Questions focused on the organisations' elected officials, means of influencing municipal decision-making, and relations with municipal decision-makers. The respondents were also asked to evaluate how many issues their organisations and the organisations in their municipality strive to influence in a year, as well as how successful these ambitions had been in the past. Views on cooperation with other organisations and parties were also probed.

In relation to service provision, the respondents were asked about their organisations' cooperation with municipality as regards service provision, competition, and service quality control. Further questions focused on voluntary activities. The organisations' participation in joint ventures and its role/roles in society were queried. Lastly, the respondents were presented with a set of statements relating to their organisations' activities as service and voluntary activity providers.

Background variables included size of municipality, and the organisation's language and classification.

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