Social Enterprise and Special Events: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Social Enterprise and Special Events

1st Edition

Edited by Julie Olberding


188 pages

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During the past twenty years, the field of nonprofit management has grown significantly in terms of the number of nonprofit organizations, number of people employed, and amount of funds raised. A key activity in nonprofit management has been organizing events, which are generally defined as "purposive gatherings of people." These purposes may include: increasing awareness about the nonprofit organization and its mission; raising funds to support programs and services related to its mission; engaging and developing individuals as donors, volunteers, and advocates; and enhancing the image of the organization and/or the broader community.

Events in the modern era tend to be organized across the nonprofit, public, and private sectors. While a nonprofit organization may create and manage an event, corporations and businesses often contribute financial support and technical expertise in areas such as branding, marketing, and social media. Depending on the event type and size, a local government may provide the venue and public safety services, including police, fire, and ambulance.

We can understand more about these mission-driven, cross-sectoral events by looking through the lens of social enterprise. Social enterprise has been defined as a venture that advances a social mission using business methods or market-based approaches. It is typically conceptualized as spanning sectors, particularly the nonprofit and private sectors.

Social Enterprise and Special Events focuses on how market-based approaches can be used to help mission-driven gatherings achieve their purposes as efficiently, effectively, and sustainably as possible. These approaches include market research, brand development, cause marketing, gamification, liquidity, cash management, and clustering. The book also incorporates concepts important in the nonprofit and public sectors such as collaborative governance, social capital, political capital, community development, placemaking, and diversity.


"This book represents an important contribution, which addresses a gap in the literature on the management of non-profits."Alex Murdock, Professor Emeritus, London South Bank University, UK

Table of Contents

Part 1: Introduction and Creation

1. Special Events with a Social Mission

Julie Cencula Olberding

2. Events in the Era of Social Enterprise

Julie Cencula Olberding

3. Successful Start-up of a Special Event: Laying the Groundwork with Market Research and Brand Development

Douglas Olberding and Jay Jisha

Part 2: Implementation and Management

4. Promoting Events through Cause Marketing, Social Media, and "Gamification"

Katie Dillon and Julie Cencula Olberding

5. Financial Management of Special Events: Toward a More Comprehensive Approach

Julie Cencula Olberding and Patrick Frambes

6. Managing and Motivating Event Volunteers

Liz Engelhardt and Julie Cencula Olberding

7. Collaborative Governance of Civic Events: The Case of the U.S. College World Series

Dale Krane and Carol Ebdon

Part 3: Assessment and Evaluation

8. Assessing the Economic Impact of a Special Event: A Reasonable Approach for Developing a Credible Estimate

Steven Cobb and Douglas Olberding

9. Assessing the Social Impacts of a Special Event: Social Causes, Social Capital, City Image and Local Pride

Julie Cencula Olberding and Douglas Olberding

Part 4: New Perspectives and Innovation

10. Energizing Community Development Through Community Events

Julie Cencula Olberding and Whitney McIntyre Miller

11. Beyond Food, Drinks and Conversation: How "Micro Events" Can Increase Social, Cultural, and Political Capital

Meredith Shockley-Smith and Francoise Knox-Kazimierczuk

12. Trends in Special Events with a Social Cause

Julie Cencula Olberding and Kyle Dorriere

About the Editor

Julie Cencula Olberding is Director of and Associate Professor in the Master of Public Administration (MPA) program at Northern Kentucky University, USA.

About the Series

Routledge Studies in Social Enterprise & Social Innovation

Over the last decades, in parallel to major changes towards privatization in the welfare regimes of advanced industrialized countries, social innovation, social enterprise and social entrepreneurship have gradually become "à la mode". They are interpreted in policy documents in market-economic terms, making social enterprises a valuable partner for policy makers looking for innovative ways of addressing social and societal problems, among which bringing the excluded back into society and increasing social cohesion. However, balancing active citizenship and empowerment, on the one hand, and market-based social service delivery and innovation in a sustainable manner, on the other, represents a daunting challenge.

In this context, social innovation is conceived as creative solutions to existing wicked social problems, at the level of both concrete outcome and process; and social enterprises are heralded as vehicles for such societal improvement. However, beyond the superficial approaches to social innovation, its relationship with social enterprises and social entrepreneurship remains to be better understood and systematized. Therefore, the series invites contributions that are committed to understanding the complexity of these transformations by engaging in new dialogues within and among all regions of the world, each with its specific historical, cultural, social and political contexts, as well as among disciplines, as these evolutions must be tackled in their multi-dimensional nature.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Government & Business
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Project Management