Participation of citizens in the third sector is an issue of perennial and global importance. However, the type and extent of participation required within third sector associations is a deeply contested issue. This chapter therefore surveys the debates in relation to the participation of associational members, users, and staff in the governance of third sector organizations. The first section considers arguments for the need for members, users, and staff to participate in the third sector associations’ governance structures that derive from the “participatory” or “voluntary spirit” models of the third sector. The second section reviews arguments against participation in the decision-making processes of the third sector that derive from pluralist or economic models of the third sector.


Social Capital Service User Sector Organization Deliberative Democracy Socialization Approach 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of West Scotland, PaisleyScotlandUK

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