The Pattern of Subsidisation and Assistance Received by Credit Unions in Northern Ireland

Ann-Marie Ward, Donal G. McKillop

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Credit unions are regarded as financial service entities that operate within communities and are run by those communities. Logically then it would seem that much assistance and subsidisation is likely to be received from the community. Yet, most prior studies that evaluate the performance or efficiency of credit unions focus on the recorded costs. This paper uses a survey methodology to provide some insight into the pattern, extent and type of assistance received by credit unions in the most successful region of the United Kingdom (UK), Northern Ireland (NI). The results find material amounts of subsidisation within credit unions in NI, in particular, volunteer time contributed by members. The level of subsidisation varies, with small credit unions more dependent on assistance, than large. Given this finding the authors suggest that an accurate evaluation of credit union performance, or efficiency, should take subsidisation into account, otherwise the results will be biased.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)89-100
JournalJournal for Public and Nonprofit Services
Volume34
Publication statusPublished - 2006

Keywords

  • Credit Unions
  • Volunteerism
  • Subsidisation

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