A new model to explore non-profit social media use for advocacy and civic engagement

  • David Chapman School of Public Service Old Dominion University Norfolk, VA 23529
  • Katrina Miller-Stevens School of Public Service Old Dominion University Norfolk, VA 23529
  • John C Morris School of Public Service Old Dominion University Norfolk, VA 23529
  • Brendan O'Hallarn Old Dominion University Norfolk, VA 23529
Keywords: social media, nonprofit, advocacy

Abstract

Non-profit organizations are actively using social media platforms as a way to deliver information to end users, yet little is known of the internal processes these organizations follow to implement this tool. We present a case study of one non-profit organization, Blue Star Families, Inc., that is actively engaged in advocacy and civic engagement. We offer a new model to explore non-profit organizations’ use of social media platforms by building on previous models and frameworks developed to explore the use of social media in the public, private, and non-profit sectors.

Author Biographies

David Chapman, School of Public Service Old Dominion University Norfolk, VA 23529

David Chapman is the Graduate Program Director of the Master of Public Administration program and a Senior Lecturer in the School of Public Service at Old Dominion University (ODU). He received his Ph.D. in Public Administration & Urban Policy from ODU. His research interests include social networks, information technology, classroom network analyses, public/political service motivations, and housing/neighborhood satisfaction issues. He is a contributor to ODU's Annual Real Estate and Market Review Report, published by the E. V. Williams Center for Real Estate and Economic Development. Prior to working at ODU, he was a Manager/Computer Scientist for the Department of the Navy. He currently maintains web sites and social media for several sports-related volunteer organizations.

Katrina Miller-Stevens, School of Public Service Old Dominion University Norfolk, VA 23529

Katrina Miller-Stevens received her Ph.D. in Public Affairs from the University of Colorado Denver.  She is currently an assistant professor in the School of Public Service at Old Dominion University.  Her research interests include exploring methods of collaboration between the nonprofit, private, and public sectors to solve social issues, advancing nonprofit board governance research, and examining influence mechanisms of the nonprofit sector on public policy.  Her work has appeared in such journals as Politics & Policy, Public Works Management & Policy, the Journal of Nonprofit Education and Leadership, Nonprofit Policy Forum, and the Journal for Nonprofit Management.  She is also co-editor of Advancing Collaboration Theory: Models, Typologies, and Evidence (Routledge, forthcoming 2015).

John C Morris, School of Public Service Old Dominion University Norfolk, VA 23529

John C. Morris received his Ph.D. in political science from Auburn University.  He is a professor of public administration at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia.  He has published widely in public administration and public policy, with particular emphases in collaboration and governance, cross-sectoral partnerships, civil society and public service, and environmental policy.  His work has appeared in journals such as Public Administration Review, Policy Studies Journal, the Journal of Politics, State & Local Government Review, and Publius, among others.  He is the lead author of The Case for Grassroots Collaboration: Social Capital and Ecosystem Restoration at the Local Level (Lexington, 2013), and has co-edited six additional volumes.  He is also co-editor of Advancing Collaboration Theory: Models, Typologies, and Evidence (Routledge, forthcoming 2015).

Brendan O'Hallarn, Old Dominion University Norfolk, VA 23529

Brendan O’Hallarn is a Ph.D. student in sport management at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia. A journalist for 15 years in Canada, for four newspapers and the Canadian Broadcasting Corp., he moved to Virginia in 2007 and is currently a public relations officer for Old Dominion, while completing his doctorate in sport management from ODU. His research interests are sport and social media, online social movements and public relations. His first peer-reviewed publication, in First Monday, studied the #NBCFail Twitter protest during the 2012 London Olympics. In 2013, he published the book Built From the Ground Up: The First 50 Years of Engineering at Old Dominion University.

 

Published
2015-10-05
How to Cite
Chapman, D., Miller-Stevens, K., Morris, J. C., & O’Hallarn, B. (2015). A new model to explore non-profit social media use for advocacy and civic engagement. First Monday, 20(10). https://doi.org/10.5210/fm.v20i10.5912