Academic year
2020/2021 Syllabus of previous years
Official course title
Course code
EM6054 (AF:332358 AR:178879)
On campus classes
ECTS credits
Degree level
Master's Degree Programme (DM270)
Educational sector code
4th Term
Course year
Go to Moodle page
The course is tailored for any of the curricula of the degree in Management, and it is addressed to those students who are interested in a deeper understanding of the problems and opportunities of managing nonprofit organizations.
By the end of the course, students are expected to have developed a solid understanding of the nature, the logics, and the main issues of managing non-profit organizations.
In particular, students are expected to:
1) be able to define and recognize non-profit organizations (i.e. to know the main concepts, fields, and types of non-profit organizations);
2) be able to explain why non-profit organizations exist, and why they have emerged (i.e. to know the main theories of non-profit organizations);
3) develop a knowledge of how non-profit organizations work (i.e. the main organizational, operational, and accounting specificities), and be able to recognize non-profit management issues in real-world situations.
Basic knowledge of management and accounting.
The course is organized in three main blocs (corresponding to the three expected learning outcomes), framed within an introduction session, and a conclusion session.

Course blocs:
1) WHAT ARE NPOs? (week 1)
In this bloc, we will address the variegated nature and blurred borders of the non-profit "sector". We will cover the main concepts of NPOs, their main fields of activity, and the main types of NPOs.
Background readings: Ch. 3 - 5 of the textbook.
2) WHY DO NPOs EXIST? (also during week 1)
In this bloc, we will review the main theories that explain why non-profit organizations exist in market economies, focusing on the conceptual foundations, the assumptions and limitations of each theory.
Background reading: Ch. 8 of the textbook.
3) HOW DO NPOs WORK? (week 2 - 4)
In this bloc, we will address the main specificities of managing non-profit organizations. In particular, we will focus on organizational aspects, operational aspects, and accounting aspects.
Background readings: Ch. 11-15 of the textbook + 3 case studies (communicated and distributed via Moodle throughout the course).
To conclude the course, policy issues, developments and future avenues for non-profit organizations will be discussed.
Also, a recap of the main pillars of the whole course will be held, as well as some questions & answers time.
Background readings: Ch. 18 of the textbook.
Anheier, H.K (2014), Nonprofit Organizations: Theory, Management, Policy (2nd edition), London, Routledge, Chapters: 3, 5, 8, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 18
Case studies (will be communicated throughout the course and they will be available through Moodle).

For both attending and non-attending students: WRITTEN EXAM (70% of final grade). 3 open-ended questions based on the textbook chapters and on the case studies discussed in class.
For attending students: CASE STUDIES presentation and discussion by groups during seminars (30% of final grade):
For non-attending students: ORAL EXAM (30% of final grade): during the oral exam, non-attending students will have to present one case study analysis of their choice, among the 4 cases of the seminars + will have to respond to theory questions on the program.
The course will alternate a theoretical approach (lectures) and an "active learning" approach (case study seminars and/or lab activities - such as interviews with NPO managers).
The course and exam modes are subject to change in case of healthcare emergency.

This subject deals with topics related to the macro-area "International cooperation" and contributes to the achievement of one or more goals of U. N. Agenda for Sustainable Development

Definitive programme.
Last update of the programme: 20/04/2020