Explaining Variations in the Nonprofit Founding Process: Founder and Organizational Factors

Erica J. Dollhopf, Christopher P. Scheitle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Although the organizational founding process is subject to various isomorphic pressures, significant variation is still found in the completion, ordering, and timing of founding events. Prior research on entrepreneurship suggests the importance of education and previous experience in determining who is best positioned to recognize entrepreneurial opportunities, which may explain some of the variation in the founding process. In this article the authors present an analysis of an original survey of recently founded religious nonprofits to better understand how founder, organizational, and contextual characteristics influence the founding process in this specific nonprofit context. Overall, the authors’ findings show that founder education and experience particularly affect the founding process as well as organizational characteristics; however, these effects vary across different dimensions of this process.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)261-272
Number of pages12
JournalNonprofit Management and Leadership
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Strategy and Management


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