OR in the Third Sector


The third sector is usually defined by what it is not! It comprises of organisations that are neither part of government (widely defines) nor of the commercial, for-profit sector.

As such its decisions cannot so easily be judged against the criteria of either political ideology or profit. Moreover, it has a wide range of organisational forms, including charities, community groups, voluntary societies, each with their own governance arrangements. It therefore presents unique challenges and opportunities for the operational researcher.

OR in the Third Sector (ORiTS) is open to anyone with an interest in the subject. It aims to help analysts working in, or with an interest in, third sector organisations to do a better job, ORiTS comprises analysts from both OR and other related disciplines that use similar tools, techniques and approaches. It meets periodically, usually with speakers with specialist knowledge of the sector. Those meetings also provide an opportunity to network with others, to exchange experiences and offer mutual support.

Committee details

Malcolm Fenby Chair
PIP staff and volunteers

Come to our next event

OR in the Third Sector event

15 March 2022, 14.00 - 15.00

Dr Matt Thomas, Head of Strategic Insight and Foresight, British Red Cross

Register here

Charities and other civil society organisations have been as strongly affected by the events of the last two years as every other sector of society: their income streams have been disrupted (often but not always for the worse); their staff and volunteers have been overwhelmed; for many, the need and demand for their services has skyrocketed; and their agility, and capacity for handling uncertainty, hves been tested to the limit.

The British Red Cross, involved in health and emergency support and campaigning, has been at the centre of much of the turbulence – whether it be due to COVID-19, the refugee and asylum crisis, or climate change and associated increased in disaster frequency. So the OR in the Third Sector SIG is delighted to welcome as speaker at the first of 2022’s planned series of bi-monthly online events, Matt Thomas, the data scientist and anthropologist who heads up the British Red Cross’s Insight and Foresight team. More details of Matt’s talk are available on the SIG webpage [here] and on the booking link.

Register here

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