National Survey of Charities and Social Enterprises 2010

The 2010 National Survey of Charities and Social Enterprises (NSCSE) conducted by Ipsos MORI on behalf of the Office for Civil Society shows that the sector has an increased role in delivering public services.

National Survey of Charities and Social Enterprises 2010

The 2010 National Survey of Charities and Social Enterprises (NSCSE) conducted by Ipsos MORI on behalf of the Office for Civil Society shows that the sector has an increased role in delivering public services – a quarter (24%) of organisations reported this to be their main role in 2010, compared with 14% in 2008. Relationships between the sector and local statutory bodies have improved since 2008: two in five organisations agree that local statutory bodies respect their independence (40%, up from 37%) and a similar proportion agree that local statutory bodies understand the nature of their organisation (39%, up from 37%). However, around one in four organisations (24%) are dissatisfied with their ability to influence local decisions relevant to them. The findings highlight the importance of voluntary income to the sector, with nearly a third of organisations (31%) citing this as their most important income source. As in 2008, 37% of organisations reported receiving some form of statutory funding and 14% cite this as their most important income source. Organisations have a confident outlook over the next 12 months (85% believe that they will achieve their objectives), although those in receipt of statutory funding are less confident of success in the future. 15% of organisations who receive statutory funding are not very/not at all confident, compared with 9% who do not receive this.

Bobby Duffy, Managing Director of the Ipsos MORI Social Research Institute, said

“The NSCSE is the largest of its kind, gathering the views of over 44,000 charities, social enterprises and voluntary sector organisations in England. It will be very important in helping to achieve Big Society objectives as we see even more of these organisations take a role in helping communities to tackle local issues and delivering public services.

It is good to see that relationships between the sector and local statutory bodies have improved in the last two years, but clearly there is still room for work to involve the sector in developing policy on issues that affect them. It’s also critical to ensure that the right kind of support is in place for these organisations to work together, engage local communities and deliver local services. This research helps to identify the priorities for this support – for instance, in applying for funding or bid contracts, maintaining sufficient financial reserves and finding volunteers.”

Full 2010 results are published at the NCSE Survey website including 151 separate local authority reports. More information is available on the Cabinet Office website. Technical details
  • The NSCSE was conducted by Ipsos MORI amongst charitable, voluntary, and social enterprise organisations across all 151 upper tier local authorities in England from September 2010 to January 2011. The survey followed, and is compared to, the 2008 National Survey of Third Sector Organisations (NSTSO) which was conducted September to December 2008 in all 149 upper tier local authorities in England in existence at that time.
  • In total 112,796 organisations across all 151 single and two-tier authorities in England were invited to participate in the NSCSE. Paper questionnaires were mailed to all selected organisations (along with a link enabling them to access the survey online). Reminder questionnaires were also sent out to organisations, with telephone reminders conducted with a sample of non-responding organisations. Organisations were able to complete the survey either online or on paper throughout the fieldwork period. The 2008 survey followed broadly the same methodology (104,391 organisations received a survey in 2008).
  • A database of organisations drawing on the list of registered charities and registers of Community Interest Companies, Companies Limited by Guarantee and Industrial and Provident Societies in England, was supplied by Guidestar UK for both surveys. Calculations were conducted to obtain the ideal number of organisations required to be asked to complete the survey to achieve robustness. In some areas a census survey was conducted (i.e. all organisations were asked to take part), and in others a random stratified sample of organisations was constructed, using organisation type (registered charity, CIC, CLG or IPS) as the main stratifier. Registered charities were further stratified according to income.
  • A total of 44,109 third sector organisations responded to the 2010 survey – this was a 41% response rate. In 2008, 48,939 responded, a response rate of 47%.
  • Data from both surveys have been weighted within each local authority and at a national level to ensure results are representative of the make up of organisations according to organisational type.

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