Pulse of the For-Purpose Sector

Status: In Progress

The Centre for Social Impact’s national Pulse of the For-Purpose Sector research program aims to provide insights into the effects of COVID-19 on the Australian for-purpose sector.

The unprecedented events created by COVID-19 are radically challenging the nation’s health, economic, and social systems, with significant implications for people most disadvantaged, and the organisations that serve them.

CSI has identified the need to take the ‘pulse’ of the sector to uncover how it is faring in a range of areas such as financial, technological, human capital, adaptation, and of course, meeting its purpose.

Launched in mid-2020, the research program has multiple aims in the context of COVID-19:

  • It is rapid-response research to understand and support the short-term needs of the for-purpose sector, including charities, not-for-profit organisations, philanthropy, social enterprises and businesses.
  • It will provide the evidence needed for the longer term, to help the sector retool for a more inclusive and sustainable future.
  • It will provide the longitudinal data and research infrastructure for an ongoing Pulse of the For-Purpose-sector analysis. This is data that the sector has never had before.

The research program will undertake twice-yearly Pulse of the For-Purpose sector surveys with dynamic reporting and dissemination and will undertake tailored deep dives on particular sub-sectors and issues where CSI has strong capability, such as homelessness, aged care, disadvantage and the disability sector, as well as organisational responses from sub-sectors, such as philanthropy and social enterprise.

The first major report was released in December 2020. You can read the media release here. Other reports will be released periodically.

We thank the Paul Ramsay Foundation, and Zurich Financial Services Australia and the Z Zurich Foundation, for their support of this research program.


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