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Contribution of the not-for-profit sector

Commissioned study

This study is completed. The final research report was released on 11 February 2010.

On 17 March 2009, the Productivity Commission received a terms of reference from the Government asking it to undertake a commissioned study on the contributions of the not for profit sector.

The study's focus was on:

  • improving the measurement of the sector's contributions
  • removing obstacles to maximising its contributions to society.

In undertaking the study, the Commission was to:

  • assess current and alternative measures of the contribution of the not for profit sector and how these can be used to better shape government policy and programs so as to optimise the sectors contribution to society
  • identify unnecessary impediments to the efficient and effective operation of not for profit organisations and measures to enhance their operation
  • consider ways in which the delivery and outcomes from government funded services by not for profit organisations could be improved
  • examine recent changes in the relationships between government, business and community organisations and whether there is scope to enhance these relationships so as to improve outcomes delivered by the not for profit sector
  • examine the impact of the taxation system on the ability of not for profit organisations to raise funds and the extent to which the tax treatment of the sector affects competitive neutrality.

The Commission was asked to adopt a broad definition of the not for profit sector to encompass most types of not for profit organisations, including Australian based international aid and development agencies.

It was also to have regard to the findings of the Government's Taxation Review headed by Dr Ken Henry and the Inquiry into the Definition of Charities and Related Organisations (2001).

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Media release: Productivity Commission to review the contribution of the not-for-profit sector

Please note: The draft report and issues paper are for research purposes only. For final outcomes of this inquiry refer to the research report.

Draft report

Issues paper

Key documents