Don’t miss this year’s FIA/ACPNS Alumni Anniversary Breakfast, 13 Nov!

This year’s FIA/ACPNS (Interactive) Alumni Anniversary Breakfast is set to be another sell-out occasion!


Featuring a fascinating case study and practical insights you can use immediately, the program theme is Fostering an internal culture of philanthropy – why so important?

‘Culture eats strategy for breakfast’ is a quote often attributed to Peter Drucker. Using real-life examples, we’ll be uncovering the whys and hows of creating a  powerful internal culture of giving that will set your mission up for success.

Attend to hear a panel of experts who will discuss the power of creating an internal philanthropic culture; provide indicators of success; and explore how you can use this culture to enhance your fundraising results and improve your organisation’s sustainability. Hear how one organisation is purposefully building an internal culture of giving and the effect it’s having both inside and outside the organisation. Gain insights and practical take-aways about how to nurture an organisation-wide philanthropic culture in your organisation that improves employee engagement and helps you fulfil your mission.

If you are a CEO, Board member or fundraiser who wants to kick-start a powerful change to your nonprofit’s culture, you won’t want to miss this event.

Date: Tuesday 13 November, 2018

Time: 7.00am for a 7:15am start / 9.00am conclusion

Venue: Broncos Leagues Club | 98 Fulcher Rd, Red Hill

Cost: FIA Member $55 | ACPNS Alumni & students $55 | Staff of organisational member $65 | Non-member $85


DYO – Three Key Questions to Answer Before Starting a Social Enterprise


Thank you to Dr Craig Furneaux for this article.

So you want to start a social enterprise? Awesome! At ACPNS we get a lot of people asking us for help on how to start a social enterprise. We even run formal classes on social business planning. Obviously every situation is different, and if you are planning to start a social business you really should get professional advice.  However, there are three key questions you need to answer before you start.

Question 1: What’s the great idea (or how will you use business to solve social and / or environmental problems)?

Like many other organisations, social enterprises seek to deliver financial, environmental and social outcomes. This ‘blended value framework’ seeks to maximise value far beyond just profit, and instead seeks to work out how to conduct businesses in such a way that social and / or environmental value is generated as well. Some commentators get a bit caught up arguing over what percentage of trade income you need to be defined as a social enterprise. I’d just rather encourage people to find innovative ways to solve social and environmental problems! If you want to see how other people solved this, then there are a number of great video cases which can help you get started.

Question 2: What’s your legal form (or what is the best type of legal entity)?

OK so you have a great idea, but to progress it, you will also need a legal entity to trade. While places like the UK have special legal entities for social enterprises such as community interest companies, Australia currently does not have a specific social enterprise legal form. So you need to pick from the range of existing forms: either a for-profit or a not-for-profit legal structure. A good place to start is Nonprofit Law resources, and here for examples of actual organisations and their structures.

Apart from legal and risk implications associated with your legal form, different structures can also restrict what resources you can access, and moreover what you can do with finances once you actually have some. A brief summary is here:

Question 3: What’s your strategy (or how will you organise your business to achieve your mission)?

So you have a great idea, and a legal entity, now the question is how will you arrange and organise your business in order to achieve your mission? There are a great number of ways to organise your social enterprise.

Some organisations trade to generate income in Australia and then deliver social outcomes overseas (e.g. Thankyou), while others enable businesses in developing countries to get fair income (e.g. Oxfam). A great overview of a variety of multiple organisational models is really worth having a long think over.

Obviously, there is a lot more involved, but those three questions, and the resources to help you answer them, are great places to start your social enterprise journey. If you want another great resource the Stanford Social Innovation Review is great. Don’t forget ACPNS provides nearly 30 years of publications to help you with the accounting, governance, law and management of social businesses, nonprofits and foundations which you can access for free.

Thanks for reading!

Did you know that ACPNS offer courses for staff, board and other volunteer professionals who work in, or are entering the philanthropy, nonprofit or social enterprise sectors? In fact one of the units deals specifically with social enterprises.

Introduction to Social Enterprise

There has been a significant increase in interest in social enterprises in many OECD countries recently. The nonprofit sector continues to mature and expand with the establishment of more sophisticated social enterprise programs, as organisations explore innovative approaches to achieving mission. This interest is driven partly by significant reductions in the traditional sources of revenue for nonprofits, together with increasingly sophisticated competition and dramatic changes in expectations from clients and stakeholder groups. These shifting expectations create demand for more strategic approaches to developing business models, the need for improved business planning, and allowing for more collaborative and hybrid business practices. The unit offers a background to social enterprise and ‘hands-on’ experience in social business planning.

Check out our Study with us page for more info or contact us for a free course information pack. +61 7 3138 1020 |


Read more of the Developing Your Organisation series

Three Ways Nonprofit Boards Can Improve Its Team by Dr Ruth Knight

Develop Your Organisation – New blog series

Nonprofit law case: Australian Pork Limited v Commissioner for ACT Revenue

Australian Pork Limited v Commissioner for ACT Revenue (Administrative Review) [2018] ACAT 85

Australian Capital Territory Civil and Administrative Tribunal, Senior Member Professor T. Foley, 30 August 2018

In 2000, the Australian Pork Corporation, the Pig Research and Development Corporation and the Pork Council of Australia were amalgamated to form Australian Pork Limited (APL), a company limited by guarantee. On 12 February 2016 APL sought a payroll tax exemption from the respondent Commissioner on the ground that APL’s whole or predominant was charitable. To obtain such an exemption APL needed to be granted a ‘Beneficial Organisation Determination’ (BOD) in its favour. On 6 March 2017 the Commissioner refused the APL’s request for a BOD in its favour for the purpose of payroll tax exemption. In this application, APL sought a review of that decision pursuant to section 104 of the Taxation Administration Act 1999 (ACT) (the Act).

The application of the Act to “charitable organisations” is dealt with in Part 3A. Section 18B of Part 3A provides the following meaning of charitable organisation:

For a tax law:

charitable organisation—

(a) means an organisation carried on for a religious, educational, benevolent or charitable purpose; but

(b) does not include—

(i) an organisation carried on for securing pecuniary benefits to its members; or

(ii) an excluded organisation unless a beneficial organisation determination is in force for the excluded organisation (emphasis added).

Section 18C(1) provides that:

excluded organisation means—

(a) a political party; or

(b) an industrial organisation; or

(c) a professional organisation; or

(d) an organisation that promotes trade, industry or commerce; or

(e) a class of organisation prescribed by regulation (emphasis added).

Category (d) of section 18(C)(1) is further defined in section18C(2) as:

‘organisation that promotes trade, industry or commerce’ means an organisation that has as one of its purposes promoting, or advocating for, trade, industry or commerce, whether generally or for a particular kind of trade, industry or commerce.

The issue for determination was whether APL satisfied the requirements for a BOD in section 18F(1) of the Act:

If the commissioner receives an application for a beneficial organisation determination from an organisation, the commissioner may make the determination if satisfied that—

(a) the predominant purpose of the organisation is to advance religion, advance education, relieve poverty, or otherwise benefit the community; and

(b) the objects and activities of the organisation that make the organisation an excluded organisation are not significant in relation to the purpose of the organisation considered as a whole; and

(c) the purpose of the organisation is not, or is not intended to be, beneficial to a particular class of people (whether or not members of the organisation) rather than the community generally (emphasis added).

It was accepted between the parties that APL was an excluded organisation under the Act. But was it entitled to a BOD to overcome this fact? Did its predominant purpose benefit the community (section 18F(1)(a))? APL contended that is met the requirements by saying that ‘predominant’ in paragraph (a) was meant in a more general sense of ‘dominant’ rather than being the primary purpose with all other purposes being secondary or ancillary. This is a departure from the usual common law test of charitable purpose. The Tribunal did not accept this departure (at [124]):

The Tribunal rejects the applicant’s assertion that paragraph (a) loosens the common law requirement and accepts the respondent’s reading of the paragraph. The ‘predominant purpose’ of the applicant is on the evidence not charitable. Organisations with non-charitable secondary purposes which can be pursued independently such as the applicant do not satisfy the section.

As to section 18F(1)(b), the Tribunal said (at [130]):

The Tribunal accepts that the purpose against which the organisation’s activities and objects are evaluated in paragraph (b) is the predominant purpose from paragraph (a) which has been found to be the promotion of the pork industry. When the evidence of these objects and activities are examined, particularly in the context of the allocation of expenditure under the applicant’s funding agreement with the Commonwealth, they are to a significant degree directed to promoting and advocating for the Australian pork industry in the Oxford English Dictionary sense of “advancing the interests of” or “furthering the growth, development and progress of”.

In relation to section 18F(1)(c), the Tribunal said that APL did not benefit the community generally (at [131]):

The effect is that the purpose cannot be to be beneficial to a particular class of people whether or not they are members of the organisation. The purport of the ‘rather than’ phrase is that the benefit must be for the community generally.

This is slightly different to the usual common law test, and was contended for by the Commissioner (at [110]):

The respondent contends paragraph (c) expresses the legislature’s reformulation of the common law requirement as stated in Oppenheim [Oppenheim v Tobacco Securities Trust Co Ltd [1950] UKHL 2] that the benefit be for the community or a sufficient section of the community. The respondent says not only has the requirement been reformulated by the legislature, but it has been stated separately from the standard test in paragraph (a). In contrast to the common law charity test a benefit for a section of the community is not sufficient. The requirement has been reformulated by requiring the benefit to be for the community generally. The respondent says the benefit the applicant’s purpose provides is to the pork industry, any benefit to the community is incidental.

The Tribunal agreed that some of the activities of APL were for the benefit of the community (at [133]):

When its objects and its activities are examined (notably its activities in animal welfare, environmental sustainability, anti-microbial resistance research, and its educational and nutritional programs) they are all beneficial to the community generally and not just to pork producers. There is no doubt that increasing sustainability, maintaining healthy farms through reducing biosecurity risks, undertaking bacterial research and water research, and developing digital technology are.

However, section 18(1)(a)-(c) had to read as a whole (at [138]):

The process for satisfying the requirements for a BOD is convoluted and restrictive. Section 18F(1)(a)-(c) which set these requirements needs to be read as a whole. Paragraph (a) is essentially a refinement of the Pemsel test, but paragraphs (b) and (c) add further or separate requirements. Paragraph (b) adds a requirement to consider the ‘significance’ of the objects and activities which support the purpose. Paragraph (c) separates out the requirement of benefit and alters it from the common law in requiring a consideration as to whether the purpose is intended to benefit a particular class of people rather than the community generally. Taken together these requirements create a test which sits above the common law test. It is a test the applicant organisation does not satisfy. It is difficult to imagine an organisation that could. The respondent’s counsel could not suggest one.

In particular the ‘benefit requirement’ in section 18F(1)(c) was most important (at [135]):

The Tribunal finds paragraph (c) is concerned with benefit and where that benefit flows. The applicant says the benefit flows to the public generally, and the benefit that flows to pork producers is marginal or incidental. The respondent says the reverse, the benefit flows to pork producers, and the benefit to the public generally is consequential.

The Tribunal agreed with the Commissioner. Therefore, as APL could not meet any of the three requirements to obtain a BOD under the Act, it was not charitable and not exempt from payroll tax.

View the case

UPDATE – Family First New Zealand v Charities Registration Board

Family First has announced intention to appeal

Media Release 3 Sep 2018
The High Court has delivered a judgment which upholds the Charities Board’s decision to de-register Family First as a charity.

The High Court has stated at paragraph [74] of its judgment that Family First’s “…core purpose of promoting the traditional family unit cannot be shown to be in the public benefit in the charitable sense under the Act.”

And at paragraph [64] that: “In relation to marriage, Family First’s model, to the extent it involves law change favouring the traditional family unit, would on its face run counter to human rights law which prohibits discrimination on such bases. Unless able to be shown to be a reasonable limit, the position advocated for would be unlawful, an obstacle to charitable status.”

And at paragraph [65] that: “The advocacy cases where charitable status has been acknowledged are scarce, and seem increasingly limited to purposes of almost universal acceptance.”

Read more on the Family First New Zealand website 

Interesting nonprofit legal case unfolding in NZ – Family First New Zealand v Charities Registration Board

Family First New Zealand v Charities Registration Board [2018] NZHC 2273

High Court of New Zealand, Simon France J, 31 August 2018

Family First New Zealand (FFNZ) is an organisation that promotes the traditional family unit by producing publications, organising themed conferences, lobbying and seeking law changes which favour its position. Originally, it was a registered charity but had then been deregistered by the Charities Registration Board of New Zealand (the Board). The basis for the Board’s decision was that FFNZ’s purposes were held to be not solely charitable.

This deregistration decision was quashed because of the Supreme Court of New Zealand’s decision in Re Greenpeace of New Zealand Ltd [2014] NZSC 105 (Greenpeace): see Family First New Zealand [2015] NZHC 1493. In Greenpeace, the Supreme Court rejected the long-held proposition in New Zealand that political and advocacy purposes of charities were always non-charitable. It was held that this sort of purpose had to looked at on a case-by-case basis. Therefore, the original deregistration decision was referred back to the Board for reconsideration. Upon reconsideration, the Board again decided to deregister FFNZ. This case was an appeal against the second deregistration decision.

Charities in New Zealand must be for exclusively charitable purposes and for the public benefit: sections 5(1) and 13 of the Charities Act 2005 (NZ) (the Act). Previously, political purposes, including advocacy and seeking changes in the law, were never charitable. However, section 5(3) of the Act allowed for advocacy purposes which were merely ancillary to the charitable purposes of a charity. This section was in question in Greenpeace, with the majority in that case holding that the section meant that political and advocacy purposes did not automatically prevent an organisation from being charitable. However, the proviso was that however much public debate was generated (which might be in some sense for the public benefit), the underlying purpose of the organisation must be both charitable and for the public benefit (at [73] of the Greenpeace decision).

Greenpeace illustrated that the instances of advocacy being a charitable purpose would be limited in New Zealand – examples were given of advocating for human rights or environmental issues. However, Molloy v Commissioner for Inland Revenue [1981] NZLR 688 remained good law (at [71] of the Greenpeace decision). Did FFNZ meet the Greenpeace test?

FFNZ promotes ‘marriage and family’, ‘life’ and ‘community values and standards’. Its objects include research, public education, taking part in public debate, and publication of relevant materials. It seeks to change the law to provide tax incentives for traditional family life, to abolish no-fault divorce, to allow ‘light smacking’, and to control prostitution and access to pornography.

It was held that FFNZ’s primary purpose was advocacy for a particular viewpoint. Really advocacy was all it did, and any public benefit was not tangible (at [48]). The Greenpeace decision had not really changed the law in New Zealand (at [49]):

Greenpeace opens the door to charitable status to the extent that the purposes of any organisation seeking charitable status must be examined, whether or not those purposes are to advocate for something. Whether, however, Greenpeace will lead to different outcomes is doubtful…the majority noted the difficulty still confronting advocacy organisations. Likewise, the minority in Greenpeace observed that because of the on-going need to establish public benefit, the majority’s approach is “not much different” from one which simply excludes advocacy [at [126] of the Greenpeace decision]. The point being that after the analysis one will still get to the same point.

The problem remains that the courts cannot know whether a change in the law advocated for will be good or bad. This is a ‘formidable, almost impossible’ obstacle for organisations to surmount ([50]). Establishing a public benefit has always been a ‘hurdle for those whose primary purpose is to promote a cause, and still is’ (at [51]).

FFNZ contended that a wider purpose of promoting family life would be charitable. The court agreed that the purpose of promoting a stable family life would be a charitable purpose (at [57]). However, FFNZ’s purpose was to promote a ‘singular view’ of the family, the traditional family. This was not a charitable purpose, despite Greenpeace. Moreover, its views on smacking, abortion, euthanasia, prostitution, censorship and other related matters were not ever going to be regarded as charitable purposes because of the decision in Molloy.

Was there a charitable purpose to advance education? The court criticised the Board’s approach on this issue, but agreed with its outcome. The Board had delved too deeply into the nature of FFNZ’s publications to determine if they were educative, and this was not necessary. However, the publications did not fall within the charitable purpose of advancing education.

FFNZ’s core purpose of promoting the traditional family unit was not charitable because it could not be shown to have public benefit. Further, FFNZ had other purposes which had previously been held to be non-charitable in cases which were still good law. This position had not changed. In addition, these purposes had an even weaker public benefit argument than FFNZ’s core purpose. Regardless of the charitable status of the core purpose, the other purposes prevented the registration of FFNZ as a charity.

Therefore, the appeal was dismissed.

This decision can be viewed at:

The decision of 2015 can be viewed at:

The Greenpeace decision can be viewed at:

Don’t miss the #GivingAus Final Summary Webinar, 12 Sept

Whether you know loads about #GivingAus or you’re just hearing about it now, you won’t want to miss this webinar!

Wed 12 Sept, 2018 | 10:00-10:45am (AEST)
Can’t attend in real time?
You should still register; all registrants will receive a recording of the webinar.


The best of #GivingAus
Giving Australia is the largest ever national analysis of giving and volunteering undertaken in this country. Its findings and insights are informing the way nonprofits operate in many areas, from governance to ethical marketing and fundraising.

Combining the best of all previous #GivingAus webinars and reports, this webinar will bring all the major facts, figures and key messages together. Don’t miss this chance to glean practical tips and powerful insights that YOU can put into practice today!

What you’ll learn 

Individual giving and volunteering
The latest stats on who gives, how much they give and what motivates the everyday Australian to give and volunteer.

Philanthropy and philanthropists 
What motivates giving, what matters to donors and how do they want to give? Great tips and advice you need to know.

Business giving
How much does business give to charity? And just how much does workplace giving and volunteering contribute to giving overall? You might be surprised.

The Nonprofit Perspective 
What can you learn from the ways in which charities facilitate giving and volunteering? A look at out-of the-box practices that attract the most support, to the uptake of new technologies to make giving easier.

So what have we learnt? Using the findings from #GivingAus, we’ll discuss how the data can help nonprofits in their fundraising and the ways in which each one of us can play a part in strengthening giving.


Like reading? You’ll love this

Giving Australia reports and fact sheets are freely available via the Prime Minister’s Community Business Partnership research projects website.

Learn more about Giving Australia | Subscribe to the Giving Australia blog

*Giving Australia was commissioned by the Australian Government Department of Social Services as an initiative of the Prime Minister’s Community Business Partnership. It was led by the Australian Centre for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Studies (ACPNS) at QUT with the Centre for Social Impact at Swinburne University of Technology and the Centre for Corporate Public Affairs.

Get your diaries out – Upcoming events

You won’t want to miss this fab upcoming events!

Secure a Grant | Free grant-seeking tutorial, 31 August

Access high-quality resources, grants and expertise for your organisation!
If you’re looking to secure a grant for your cause or get a behind-the-scenes look at what donors in your area are doing, this free tutorial is for you! Find out more

Harness Human-Centred Design, 13 Sept

This workshop will help you learn to use (and get starting doing) HCD to innovate and create communities of high social, cultural and political wellness. The best way to understand the design thinking process is to experience it. That’s why this workshop provides you with knowledge + experience + Q&A time – with Ray Bull and his team of expert designers who help organisations and individuals improve social impact outcomes. Find out more

The Thesis Whisperer Live, 27 Sept

Join ‘The Thesis Whisperer’ – a.k.a. Associate Professor Inger Mewburn from ANU – as she takes us through the latest research into employability and preparing for work in an age of uncertainty.There is demand for researchers outside academia and this important lecture will help you think about how you can plan, right now, for your future career – whatever it might be. Open to all research degree students at QUT and beyond – but be quick as there are only 100 places available! Find out more

FIA/ACPNS Alumni Anniversary Breakfast, 13 Nov


Fostering an internal culture of philanthropy – why so important? ‘Culture eats strategy for breakfast’, often attributed to Peter Drucker. Using real-life examples, we’ll be uncovering the whys and hows of creating a powerful internal culture of giving for success. You’ll get expert insights and a bunch of practical take-away tips on how to nurture your organisational culture.

Registrations have not yet opened for this event. To find out more and to keep in the loop, email and we will add you to the invitee list.

DYO – Three Ways Nonprofit Boards Can Improve Its Team


Thank you to Dr Ruth Knight for this article.

I’ve worked in the nonprofit sector for over 20 years and met a lot of Boards of Management; small, large, dysfunctional and high performing. I’ve noticed all are highly passionate and caring, they love their organisation and the work their staff and volunteers do.

So it’s very curious to me that so many Boards find it hard to work together as a team! There seems to be a lot of disagreement about the Board’s role and responsibilities, what they should spend their time talking about, and the decisions they should be making. Many Boards become stagnant, disengaged or disorganised due to not working together effectively.

Have you also noticed problems with role clarity and how Boards measure their performance?

QUT researchers Professors Gavin Nicholson, Cameron Newton and Myles McGregor-Lowndes certainly did when they put the microscope on how Boards think and operate. They distilled the need for significant improvements to the way Boards think about themselves, and how they address challenges. Boards typically don’t spend time reflecting on their performance. The study finds:

Quite simply, there is strong and growing evidence that the effectiveness of an organisation’s governance system relies on an effective board operating well together as a team. Thus, opening the “black box” of how the board operates is seen by many as the most important challenge facing the field.

It starts with the willingness to take a good and objective look at how the team is working together, and being honest about what they need to do to improve their performance.

Yes, it can be hard to ask for feedback from your peers, management and organisation. That is why so many Boards never prioritise critically reviewing their own performance. It is also a very difficult task to review the performance of a Board – what criteria do you measure yourself against?

Six years ago at ACPNS within QUT Nicholson, Newton and McGregor-Lowndes decided to use concepts and elements of a team development model to review Board performance. Their model was adapted for the unique nature of the governing body to assess the team-based aspects of a board’s performance. In 2012, they analysed the self-perceptions of 118 active nonprofit board members from 18 boards around Australia and identified a number of issues for Boards who want to become better teams. ACPNS has been applying the resulting validated research tool to hundreds of organisations since.

As I read and reflected on this research I identified three tips for Boards:

#1: See yourself as a team

The episodic nature of the Board’s work varies dramatically from most work groups that meet on a far more regular basis, therefore some Boards don’t see themselves as a team or develop themselves as other work teams would. But this is very dangerous, as an organisation’s Board has a profound effect on organisational performance and outcomes. Therefore, it is imperative that Board members see themselves as a team, and seek support and training to become a high performing one!

#2: Ask for, and be open to, constructive feedback

Often Boards don’t ask for feedback, but this means those Boards are not aware of their strengths and weaknesses. They are not reflecting or creating a culture of continuous improvement. There’s value in constructive criticism, and Boards must remember that this is the best way to improve how they work as a team, and also become personally more effective. Boards should review feedback from each other, management, employees and beneficiaries. Smart boards use team reflection to understand what this feedback means and then take proactive steps to address the issues constructively. Doing this regularly will help them become more successful in everything they do.

#3: Demonstrate accountability on the team

Accountability is critical on all teams–especially leadership teams who are governing an organisation. Accountability should be a trait that Directors on a Board value, and demonstrate personally and collectively. Directors should read Board reports, involve themselves in strategic discussions, avoid conflicts of interest, have excellent communication skills and build trust within the team. Taking personal and collective responsibility for being accountable will create a good culture, and minimise dysfunctional team behaviours that are often driven by pride and ego.

What valuable lessons have your learnt working with Boards? What other things must Boards do to ensure they are performing well as a team and having a positive impact on the organisation? Please share your thoughts in the comments.

To read the paper Nicholson, Gavin J., Newton, Cameron J., & McGregor-Lowndes, Myles (2012) The nonprofit board as a team: pilot results and initial insights. Nonprofit Management and Leadership, 22(4), pp. 383-528. Click here

Thanks for reading!

Did you know that ACPNS offer courses for staff, board and other volunteer professionals who work, or are entering the philanthropy, nonprofit or social enterprise sectors? In fact one of the units deals specifically with governance.

Philanthropic and Nonprofit Frameworks of Governance

The unit explores contemporary understandings of philanthropic and nonprofit governance in the context of social, economic and political systems. It locates these understandings in various theoretical and descriptive frameworks providing students with both the knowledge and analytical skills that are necessary to reflect critically on philanthropy and nonprofit governance systems and their environments.

Check out our Study with us page for more info or call to request a free course information pack. +61 7 3138 1020. Please get in touch, this could be your next best career move.

Connect with me on LinkedIn or on Twitter @Drruthknight. And listen to some conversations with great speakers and ACPNS students on the Student Experience page of our blog.

Develop Your Organisation – New blog series kicking off this month!

Available now!

August 2018 DEVELOP YOUR GOVERNANCE, Dr Ruth Knight

September 2018 DEVELOP YOUR SOCIAL ENTERPRISE, Dr Craig Furneaux

What does a nonprofit organisation or a social enterprise need to thrive? And how is its effectiveness and efficiency measured?


There are questions we’re often asked. The Developing Your Organisation blog, developed by ACPNS, is a valuable resource for you and your organisation, designed to give you the skills and know-how to create a sound organisational structure and improve your organisation’s governance and functioning.

Each month we will be posting great tips and easy-to-implement practices to help your nonprofit thrive. Topics will include:

  • Develop Your Accounting & Accountability 
  • Develop Your Board
  • Develop Your Culture
  • Develop Your Fundraising
  • Develop Your Legal Frameworks
  • Develop Your Leadership
  • Develop Your Management
  • Develop Your People
  • Develop Your Philanthropy
  • Develop Your Social Enterprise
  • Develop Yourself

So tune in and get excited about this fab new blog – you’re going to love the simple tricks and tips to get your nonprofit buzzing!

Your support will help to make the world a better place


Foster tomorrow’s community leaders 

Change someone’s life today by contributing to student scholarships

We know our students well; without exception, they’re passionate and dedicated to bettering their communities and enriching the lives of those they serve. By backing an ACPNS student, you’ll be backing the philanthropy and nonprofit sector as a whole – and contributing to making a positive difference in the world.

Scholarships and bursaries have helped many of our students to complete our postgraduate programs and go on to become leaders in the nonprofit sector. They make the world of difference to many of our students, who are generally working on lower than commercial salaries and often do not have the luxury of employer-funded education subsidies. They are particularly important to the one in five of our students who study externally from interstate or regional Queensland and require assistance to attend the compulsory on-campus elements of their course in Brisbane.

We’ve made it easier than ever for you to donate to student scholarships through the Myles McGregor-Lowndes Scholarship Fund.

Established in tribute to Emeritus Professor Myles McGregor-Lowndes, the founder of ACPNS, this scholarship aims to continue Myles’ tradition of investing in students undertaking studies in the philanthropy and nonprofit disciplines.

This scholarship covers 50% of the tuition fees for the core units of the Graduate Certificate of Business and Master of Business (Philanthropy and Nonprofit Studies) and will be available from 2018 onwards. Both courses are internationally-recognised and highly-regarded and provide students with the skills for a career in the management of philanthropic and nonprofit organisations.

Every cent donated will go directly to scholarships for our students. Thank you in advance for your meaningful contribution.

“My family sacrificed a lot for me to work in the nonprofit sector but thanks to a scholarship through the Australian Centre for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Studies at QUT, I was fortunate to learn from industry leaders and apply new theories, concepts and research to my work. The scholarship eased the financial burdens of working, studying and raising a family and gave me an opportunity to formalise my practical experiences and secure a leadership position in the sector.”

Mitchell Witherington
Fundraising and Philanthropy Manager, Wesley Mission Brisbane

Donating is easy.

Simply click the below button and choose the Myles McGregor-Lowndes Scholarship from the drop-down list. You’ll put a smile on someone’s face today.

Be part of cutting edge research 

We translate nonprofit research into resources and initiatives that change lives

Since 2001 our skilled researchers have answered the problems the philanthropy and nonprofit sector faces by producing and implementing effective products, driving policy change and equipping individuals and organisations with the know-how to make the sector thrive – all through cutting-edge research.

By following in the footsteps of leading Australian and international philanthropic organisations such as The Atlantic Philanthropies, The Ian Potter Foundation, The George Alexander Foundation and Reid Charitable Trusts who have supported the Centre’s research work, you too can support our research through grants or sponsorship of academic positions and visiting scholars.

Contact us today to discuss your interest in our work. Phone + 61 7 3138 1020 | Email

Donate today by clicking the below button and choosing Philanthropy Research (ACPNS) from the drop-down list.