The 2017 Study

The 2017 Nonprofit Board Leadership Study provided evidence of the benefits of nonprofit board service for employees, their companies, nonprofits, and communities. The study showed that companies’ nonprofit board programs provide a pathway for businesses to grow shareholder value by advancing diversity and inclusion, developing human capital for innovation, and helping to achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The 2017 study is valuable to companies that either have programs and seek to enhance and scale them, or companies that are considering offering such programs. 

Download the 2017 Report Now

This pathbreaking study demonstrates that companies can advance diversity and inclusion, develop human capital for innovation, and foster economic development and achieve the U.N. SDGs by engaging their employees on nonprofit boards.

board member and clients diverse

Advancing workplace diversity and inclusion

Business people who serve on boards gain appreciation and understanding of people from backgrounds that are different from their own. This benefits companies since studies indicate that diversity and inclusion increase profitability. Additionally, companies have a significant reservoir of people from diverse backgrounds who would like to serve on boards, thus providing opportunities for leadership development.

leadership skills copy

Developing human capital for innovation

Business people who serve on boards confront challenges that stimulate their leadership, creativity, and innovation. Additionally, they improve skills that enhance their performance at work, including strategic planning, decision-making, listening, collaborating, and partnerships. This experience and expertise will help their companies grow value.

SDGs copy copy copy copy copy

Fostering economic development and achieving the U.N. SDGs

Business people who serve on boards strengthen communities where their company’s employees and customers live and work. Board engagement also helps to advance the U.N. SDGs, including  quality education, reduced inequalities, sustainable cities and communities, and partnerships for the goals.


American Express Foundation



Share this Page: