The third sector: value driven, transparently managed

October 2015

The third sector, including voluntary, community, and not for profit organisations, social enterprises, and co- operatives, plays a fundamental role in addressing many of society’s unmet needs. These organisations are typically value-driven, and function independently of government.


Third sector organisations have historically been well-respected and valued by the British public. Indeed, recent polling demonstrates that they are the third most trusted institution in the UK, slightly behind doctors and the police. However, the Cup Trust scandal, the recent furore over heavy-handed fundraising approaches, as well as the collapse of a number of high-profile organisations have increased public and media scrutiny unearthing a range of possible issues both governance related and otherwise.

This short paper will explore these issues in detail before presenting a range of possible solutions drawn from the Good Governance Institute’s (GGI) extensive experience in the health and education sectors, as well as from ideas put forward in interviews conducted to inform this report. It is our belief that the sector would benefit from more prudent financial management, an improved regulator, greater leadership development and succession planning, and further education around the role of the Trustee: in short, good governance. Lessons from other sectors can, and should, be learnt from and we present a few of these in this document.

Download publication
The Author
Christopher Smith

Christopher Smith


Chris's Bio