A Comprehensive Canadian Approach to the Third Sector: Creative Tensions and Unexpected Outcomes

  • Kathy L. Brock
Part of the Nonprofit and Civil Society Studies book series (NCSS)


In June 2000, the Canadian government together with representatives from the voluntary sector announced the Voluntary Sector Initiative (VSI), an ambitious joint endeavor intended to investigate and strengthen their relationship. With the experience of the United Kingdom as a backdrop,1 representatives from the two sectors were confident that they could develop a new framework for the inclusion of voluntary sector organizations in government policy and revamp the regulatory framework to enable voluntary organizations to function more effectively. Ultimately, the goal was to serve Canadians better at a time when these organizations were increasingly assuming functions that had been performed by government departments and agencies.

This paper argues that in order to understand the success and the limitations of the VSI in securing a more effective policy role for the sector, the forces that drove the initiative onto the government agenda must be understood. By reflecting...


Federal Government Good Governance Voluntary Organization Policy Problem Voluntary Sector 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Policy StudiesQueen’s UniversityKingstonCanada

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