Is Volunteer Management a Science?


Is Volunteer Management a Science

In 1959, novelist and scientist, C. P. Snow gave a lecture entitled  The Two Cultures. Essentially Snow argued that the humanities and science were split into opposing cultures, each one not understanding the other.

Most of us would probably categorize volunteer management as a humanity.  In the post  The Volunteer Investor I likened volunteers to humanity investors.  But while humanity is at the heart of volunteering, isn’t the management of volunteers a science? And, by treating it as a science, does that automatically remove the humanity?

Well, what if we look at other science based professions that serve humanity?

  • Does the researcher seeking a cure for cancer not dream about the potential millions of people saved?
  • Does the engineer developing a new prosthetic not imagine the first time an amputee puts on that device and walks?
  • Does a safety engineer never think about the children she may keep safe?

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