State- level Database of Religious Nonprofit Organizations

Project Number: 
Start Date: 
Wed, 01/01/1992

Religious organizations make up a significant part of the nonprofit sector. However, because of a lack of data they are often not included in descriptions of it. This study, directed by Bradford Smith, drew on a wide variety of governmental and private data sources in order to place religious congregations in the context of other charitable and mutual benefit organizations. Thus, scholars are able to examine the relationship of religious organizations to other actors in the economy over a long period of time, and religious leaders are able to see where their organizations fit into the larger culture of voluntary organizations. By focusing on California, the most highly populated and culturally diverse state in the country, researchers can draw far-reaching conclusions about the future of religious organizations in the United States. The results of Smith's study are contained in California Nonprofit Organizations 1995, published by the University of San Francisco. Nonprofit organizations are grouped into the following categories: social service, health, education, arts, community service, membership, religion, grant making, and business service. (SM)