U.S. nonprofits maintained a robust pattern of job growth through 2016, the latest year for which data are available.
But for-profit companies are making significant inroads in key nonprofit fields, cutting into nonprofits’ market share.
These are just two of the major conclusions emerging from a new report just issued by the Johns Hopkins Center for Civil Society Studies. Drawing on the rich body of data generated by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages, the Hopkins report sheds important new light on recent nonprofit employment dynamics. Among the findings:
- Between 2007 and 2016, the number of jobs created by U.S. nonprofits grew by 16.7%, nearly four times faster than the country’s for-profit businesses (see Figure 1).
- Nonprofit job growth was also more consistent, growing both during the recession period of 2007-12 and in the more recent 2012-16 period, whereas for-profit employment fell in the early period and just barely made up the lost ground more recently. Click through the various periods in Figure 1 to see this comparison.
These developments come at a crucial time for the nonprofit sector given major challenges facing the sector as a result of federal policy changes and the 2017 Federal Tax Cut and Jobs Act.
See the Johns Hopkins Center for Civil Society Studies’ 2019 Nonprofit Employment Report for further information on these and other current features of nonprofit employment and wages, including:
- Nonprofit share of private employment by state, territory, and major counties. This includes the first-ever available data on nonprofits in Puerto Rico.
- Nonprofit employment and wages compared to other “industries.”
- Nonprofit employment distribution by field of activity.
- Nonprofit share of private employment in major fields of activity.
- Nonprofit vs. for-profit wages by field.
- Nonprofit employment growth by state and territory.
To further explore the data on which this report is based and create graphics focusing on your own region or field, please visit Nonprofit Works, an interactive database developed by the Johns Hopkins Center for Civil Society Studies.
This post is reprinted from the Johns Hopkins Center for Civil Society Studies blog.
Lester M. Salamon is a professor at the Johns Hopkins University and director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Civil Society Studies. In addition, Dr. Salamon holds an appointment as senior research professor at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) Bologna Center and serves as scientific director of the International Laboratory for Nonprofit Sector Studies at Moscow’s National Research University Higher School of Economics. He previously served as director of both the Johns Hopkins Institute for Policy Studies and the Center for Governance and Management Research at the Urban Institute in Washington, D.C., and as deputy associate director of the U.S. Office of Management and Budget in the Executive Office of the President.