DeRrett’s Illustrated Guide to the Canadian Establishment, Peter C. Newman, General Editor, Published in Canada by Methuen Publications, Agincourt, Ontario, 1983, 408 pp., $45.
REVIEWED BY GORDON L. GOLDIE
Fund-Raising Consultant, Gordon L. Goldie Company Limited
Peter Newman’s latest volume in his saga of the people who populate the stratosphere of Canadian society is a handsome addition to the coffee table and an informative and entertaining read.
Profusely illustrated with historic as well as recent photographs, many by John Reeves, the oversize 408-page volume features a lengthy assessment of “The Power Network” by editor Newman-individual profiles of 21 Canadian dynasties-as well as a listing of”The Debrett’s Six Hundred”, most with brief, informal biographies.
The “Six Hundred” (actually 623) come in six categories-Academe and Religion (93 entries), Arts and Media ( 136), Business (184 including one horse, Northern Dancer, but excluding the “dynasty” family members), Public Service and Military ( 64), Law ( 84) and Science and Medicine (66)-with nary an elected politician”… since these positions are temporary and subject to the mercurial will of the voters”. Sorry, Pierre.
Much of the text is based on the editor’s 10 years of research for his other writings about the Canadian Establishment, a series which prompted the new owners of Debrett’s to invite Newman to tackle this assignment.
The book has examples of both Newman’s tendency to literary embellishment and his occasional lapse into contradiction. After reading the section sub-titled, typically, “Patrolling the Perfumed Stockades of Canada’s Establishment”, one is convinced that this country’s higher echelons are replete with Calvinistic hedonists.
This national split personality might help explain why there are so few “genuine philanthropists” among the wealthy in Canada-although Newman’s listing of the few is by no means definitive. The very rich in this country seem to have to a large degree shunned the publicity that so often accompanies large-scale givingor have preferred to spend the money on themselves. Then there is the other group, possibly in the majority, whose fortunes were dissipated by a proliferation of inheritors. (A shower given for the bride of a Gooderham, Newman recounts, was attended by more than 100 of his female relatives.)
From a fund-raiser’s perspective, the book has a number of interesting and valuable features: family and corporate relationships; the interests, hobbies and clubs of the rich; and, occasionally, their favourite charities. Also included is a section devoted to the 25 largest family foundations in Canada. Members of the Order of Canada, of the Order of Military Merit and of various Orders of Chivalry also are listed together with a one-page list of Canadians with British titles, as befits a Canadian version of Debrett’s.
Peter Newman obviously has his favourites among the rich, powerful and nearlyso, and this book has little of the bite of his previous works on the subject Nevertheless, it is a worthwhile addition to the library for anyone who has either a professional or personal curiosity about the Canadian elite.
Managing Voluntary Organizations: Proceedings, Mel S. Moyer, Editor
Published by the Faculty of Administrative Studies, York University, Toronto, 1983, 179 pp.
REVIEWED BY JOYCE FORSTER The conference which led to publication of these proceedings was held in Toronto, October 19-21, 1983, under the joint sponsorship of the Voluntary Sector Program, Faculty of Administrative Studies, York University and the Voluntary Action Program, Department of the Secretary of State, Government of Canada. Its purpose was”to stimulate and share scholarly research aimed at strengthening the management of voluntary organizations”.
While there is no substitute for the interaction of participants and speakers at a conference, there is often a surfeit of information presented in a very short time. Those who attended this conference will find these proceedings an invaluable aid to assimilation and recall. Those who did not, will find they provide a comprehensive study manual which should open doors (and minds) to further study.
The importance of improved management of the voluntary sector is underlined by both Professor Mel S. Moyer of York’s Facuity of Administrative Studies in his Preface to the volume and by Hugette Labelle, Under Secretary of State of the Government of Canada in her keynote address. These stage-setters are followed by David J. Tucker of the School of Social Work of McMaster University. Writing about “Environmental Change and Organizational Policy Making” he provides an explanatory analysis of the growth of a population of voluntary service organizations in a single metropolitan setting over a period of11 years. His analysis includes the characteristics of those which survived, why they did so, and why others did not One of the reasons for a failure to survive might be a lack of skill in interorganizational relations. Writing under the title, “Interorganizational Relations and the Management ofVoluntary Health Organizations”, Larry D. Gamm of the Department of Health Planning and Administration at Pennsylvania State
University indicates that a major part of the work of voluntary agencies involves the management of interactions among a number of organizations. He believes that co-operative rather than independent approaches may serve both the agencies and the community more effectively.
Academic rigour is tempered by practical experience in “Power Analysis of Management in a Volunteer Organization: A Case Study of the Consumers’ Association of Canada”. The authors, Robert W. Sexty and J. Anthony Dearness, are members of the Facuity of Business Administration of Memorial University ofNewfoundland and both have been CAC volunteers. The analysis is based on Henry Mintzberg’s study of Power In And Around Organizations (Englewood Cliffs, N.J., Prentice-Hall, 1983). Appropriately, this is followed by “Collaboration and Combat Management in Networking”, by Novia A.M. Carter of Consulting and Research Services, Winnipeg.
David S.R Leighton, Chairman of the Board ofNabisco Brands writes from his experience in the School ofBusiness of the University ofWestern Ontario and the Banff Centre for the Arts under the title, “Canada’s Cultural Resources: Where Are the Managers?”. He points out the problems which arise when administration is confused with management and reviews the role of the board, barriers to improvement and ways to address weaknesses.
An old and continuing problem—the paradox that volunteering is both work and leisure—is addressed by Jone L. Pearce of the Graduate School of Management at the University of California who writes about the role of”compensation” for volunteers in”Labor That Is Worth Nothing: The Paradox ofVolunteers”. A new problem is addressed by Charles B. Weinberg, Facuity of Commerce and Business Administration at the University of British Columbia in “Pricing Formerly Free Services: A Preliminary Report”. He considers the issues which arise when formerly “free” services are offered for a fee.
In a joint paper, Trudy Heller of Organizational Consultants, Philadelphia and Jon Van Til of the Department of Urban Studies and Community Development of Rutgers University discuss “Changing Authority Patterns and the Future of Institutional Management”, a study of the “crisis of authority” in business, government and voluntary organizations. Adaptation in the management practices of each sector are reviewed and evaluated.
Larry F. Moore of the Facuity of Commerce and Business Administration at the University of British Columbia points out in “Organizational Imagery and Voluntarism” that the image of an organization must be kept in tune with the social environment and shows how image can influence an organization’s constituencies either positively or negatively.
Murray G. Ross of the Faculty of Administrative Studies at York con utes excellent study of”TheNon-Profit Board”, an entity with which he has more than a passing acquaintance. (He is a former president of York.) His study includes answers to the fundamental questions: what makes a good board? and what makes a board good?
An interesting study of five organizations which have taken the first steps towards more professional management is presented in “Strategic Management in Voluntary and Nonprofit Organizations: Reality, Prescriptive Behaviour and Future Research” by Max S. Wortman, Jr., of the Department of Management in the College of Business Administration at the University of Tennessee.
Finally, Kerry Keno Allen, president ofVOLUNTEER: TheNational Center for Citizen Involvement, Washington, writes about “Volunteers From the Workplace: A New Resource”. He discusses the nature and operation of programs which involve corporate employees in community service. Such programs are on the increase in the United States and they raise new issues for both governments and voluntary organizations.
With so many contributors it is not surprising that there is some variation both in the quality of the writing and in the importance of the material presented. Nevertheless every paper is of interest and the book can unhesitatingly be recommended to members of the board and senior management of any non-profit organization.
Publication of these Proceedings was made possible by grants from the Department of the Secretary of State of the Government of Canada, the Ministry of Community and Social Services of the Government of Ontario and the Margaret Brown Byron Legacy established by the Women’s Advertising Club of Toronto. Their money was well spent
These Proceedings are available without charge from: Managing Voluntary Services
Operational Support Branch
Ministry of Community and Social Services
Government of Ontario
11th Floor, 700 Bay Street
Toronto, M5 G 1Z6
Prompt ordering is advised as the supply is limited.