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BoardSource Nonprofit Governance Index

Since 1994, BoardSource has been conducting the BoardSource Nonprofit Governance Index, a one-of-a-kind national survey of nonprofit chief executives and board chairs. The Governance Index is the only national survey to gather information from both chief executives and board chairs on their experiences in the boardroom. The Index identifies trends in board composition, policies, and practices as well as provides a detailed view of the challenges nonprofit boards are facing as they conduct their work.

Distribution of 2012 Survey Responses Across the Continental U.S.


BoardSource will be conducting the Governance Index in 2014. Check back for further information later in the year.


In 2012, BoardSource expanded the depth and the breadth of the Governance Index:

  • The 2012 Index includes two independent samples of nonprofit organizations: (1) a selection of BoardSource members; and (2) a national random sample of nonprofits unaffiliated with BoardSource.
  • Questions were added to the survey that examine boardroom culture, specifically inclusive practices and shared leadership among members.

The BoardSource Nonprofit Governance Index 2012 - Data Report 1. CEO Survey of BoardSource Members displays frequency information for a sample of nonprofit chief executives who were registered as BoardSource members in May 2012.

Previous Governance Index Reports

The BoardSource Nonprofit Governance Index 2010
The BoardSource Nonprofit Governance Index 2007
The BoardSource Nonprofit Governance Index 2004

A compendium of information on nonprofit board policies, practices, and performance in the U.S.
“The thoughtful responses of those nonprofit leaders who participate in this important survey inform and enrich the sector’s understanding of the state of nonprofit governance today.”

— Anne Wallestad, president & CEO, BoardSource