Survival in local voluntary associations

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Abstract

This article uses longitudinal data to explore the antecedents of survival among local voluntary associations. The literature distinguishes between deterministic and voluntaristic accounts of organizational survival. In a deterministic perspective, external selection processes determine whether organizations persevere. In a voluntaristic approach, strategic choices and organizational design are paramount. The analyses show that both perspectives have explanatory power. When it comes to avoiding organizational death, organizations can influence their destiny substantially by being extroverted, selecting a diverse and qualified board, and establishing ties to higher organizational levels.

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