This comprehensively researched book provides a detailed guide to a little-known sector of Latin America's higher education network. It also raises important questions concerning the necessary institutional arrangements required to nudge authoritarian and totalitarian regimes in more democratic directions. . . . [The book] provides serious, and at times convincing, insights into a topic deserving of a wider audience.
Winner of the 1997 ARNOVA Award for Distinguished Book in Nonprofit and Voluntary Action Research
The private third sector has largely displaced public universities and bureaucracies as Latin America's leaders in social science and related policy activities. In many nations, these private research centers have become the main workplace for intellectuals. Mostly think tanks, they are influential political institutions, often making strong contribution to democratization.
The success of these research centers marks an unsurpassed triumph for international philanthropy, but it also raises questions about the proper role and structural home for research and advanced study. Levy shows how the centers' success often undermine a region's struggling universities while failing themselves to fulfill higher education's fundamental mission.
Levy deals broadly with regional developments, yet systematically identifies and analyzes the crucial subpatterns. He integrates impressive empirical data with conceptual perspectives on nonprofit organizations, comparative politics, and comparative education as well as Latin American studies.
Daniel Levy's Building the Third Sector makes an important contribution to a better understanding of the burgeoning nonprofit sector, with a careful analysis of the role of private research centers, their management, and their significance.
This study of the rise of nongovernmentl organizations in Latin America over the past quarter century is an important addition to an international/comparative literature that has tended to ignore our southern neighbors. It is enriched by the author's disciplinary grounding in educational policy, political science, and area studies.