Assessing Nonprofit Websites: Developing an Evaluation Model
Kirk, Kristin Cherish
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Nonprofit organizations are pivotal actors in society, and their websites can play important roles in aiding organizations in their socially-beneficial missions by serving as a platform to present information, to interact with stakeholders and to perform online transactions. This dissertation analyzed nonprofit websites in the United States (U.S.) and in Thailand in a series of three articles. The first developed a website evaluative instrument, based on an e-commerce model, and applied it to nonprofit websites through a manual decoding process. That article's findings suggested that Thai websites are not considerably different than U.S. nonprofit websites, except more American websites offer online transactions. The second article analyzed two different types of nonprofits in Thailand using the same model to assess website development in an emerging market. That analysis suggested local Thai nonprofits' websites lagged significantly behind those of internationally connected nonprofit organizations in the country in the features they offered. The third article compared the adapted model employed in the second analysis, which used manual decoding for website examination, to a commercially available, automated evaluation service. That analysis highlighted the differences between the two assessment tools and found them to be complementary, but independently insufficient to ensure robust nonprofit website evaluation.
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