Third sector organisations and social welfare : a study of the role of social service and charitable organisations in Taiwan

  • Chung-Dao Pan

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


This study is about the role and operation of ‘third sector’ organisations (TSOs) within the Taiwanese social welfare context. TSOs have increased dramatically and become actively involved in social service provision. This phenomenon has not only had significant impact on the development and operation of TSOs in Taiwan but it is also of increasing interest to public policy academics. The latter are especially interested in the implications for the government-third sector relationship. This research examines the reasons why TSOs have been established, why they actively participate in social service provision, and their role and operation within the social welfare context of Taiwan. The study has both quantitative and qualitative data. It sampled ‘social service’ and ‘charitable’ organisations (SSCOs), which are the main type of TSOs in Taiwan, to examine their role, operation and interaction with government. Questionnaires were mailed to collect quantitative data first. After the quantitative data were collected and analysed, semi-structured interviews were undertaken to collect qualitative data. The study found that TSOs in Taiwan exist in a highly institutionalised environment, which is affected by traditional Confucian ideas and contemporary Western ideas such as social justice and civil rights. The rapid growth of TSOs has a strong connection with the desire to fill social service gaps left by government and family. TSOs mainly play the role of service provider rather than that of advocate. They cooperate with government in social service provision and have developed different types of symbiotic relationships with government. A ‘resonance effect’ between government and TSOs was also found as they implement social policy.
Date of AwardJul 2007
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorMargaret Harris (Supervisor)


  • Third sector organisations
  • social welfare
  • role of third sector organisations
  • relationship between government and third sector organisations
  • Taiwan

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