An effectsindicator model of volunteer satisfaction: A functionalist theory approach Academic Article uri icon


  • The purpose of this investigation was to develop and evaluate a causal model of volunteer satisfaction. The model includes three sets of concepts derived from functionalist theory. The first set includes a direct measure of the extent to which volunteer work experiences are satisfying psychological functions of volunteering. In addition, that set of variables includes measures of six traditional "cause-indicators" from existing research on volunteer satisfaction in park and recreation settings. This set of variables is assumed to affect eudaimonic happiness, which is the effects-indicator of satisfaction in the model. Eudaimonic happiness, in turn, is assumed to affect key volunteer worker attitudes and behaviours. Attitudes and behaviours included in the model are organizational commitment, organizational citizenship behaviour, and retention. Causal linkages among these three sets of variables were tested using a sample of 167 volunteers from two different park and recreation agencies. Path analysis techniques were used to refine the original model. The result is a model that specifies that nature of work and extent to which psychological functions are served affect volunteer happiness and commitment. Quality of supervision also affects commitment which, in turn, affects volunteer retention and organizational citizenship behaviour. 2002/2003 Ontario Research Council on Leisure.

published proceedings

  • Leisure/Loisir

author list (cited authors)

  • Silverberg, K. E., Ellis, G. D., Whitworth, P., & Kane, M.

citation count

  • 7

complete list of authors

  • Silverberg, Kenneth E||Ellis, Gary D||Whitworth, Paul||Kane, Michael

publication date

  • January 2002