Nonprofit Governance in an Age of Disruption and Transition: The Impact of COVID-19


  • Jeffrey Aulgur ARNOVA Governance Section Chair (2021)Arkansas Tech University



Arts, Nonprofit Governance, COVID-19


The drastic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the arts and cultural sector cannot be underestimated. Over 90% of arts venues have ceased or transformed their operations, with many productions being delayed, postponed, rescheduled, or canceled because of travel restrictions and lockdowns. Facing hiring freezes, layoffs, and furloughs, cultural organizations have been forced to make difficult choices based on their unique situations and resources. As Farago (2021) noted:

“The effects of this cultural depression will be excruciating, and not only for the symphony not written, the dance not choreographed, the sculpture not cast, the musical not staged. Beyond value in its own right, culture is also an industry sector accounting for more than 4.5 percent of this country’s gross domestic product, according to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis.”

The three cases in this issue highlight the governance challenges faced by arts organizations in California, Pennsylvania, and Illinois. Each case describes a governance issue, provides a theoretical background and framework, and offers instructional tools.

Author Biography

Jeffrey Aulgur, ARNOVA Governance Section Chair (2021)Arkansas Tech University

ARNOVA Governance Section Chair

Editor of this submission (non-author)

Associate Professor, Arkansas Tech University

Department Head, Professional Studies, Arkansas TEch University





Case Studies