Colin has been involved in the practice and study of voluntary action since 1968 and remains heavily involved in research on volunteering, the management of voluntary organisations and the relationship between the voluntary sector and the state.
He began his career as a practitioner and worked for the Workers’ Educational Association as its National Development Officer, and was Head of Cambridge House Settlement before becoming a researcher and postgraduate teacher in voluntary sector studies at the LSE, Roehampton University and Birkbeck, University of London.
Colin is currently editing, with David Billis, a Handbook of Hybrid Organisations which will be published in 2019. Other recent publications are 'Volunteering and Society in the 21st Century' and 'Rediscovering Voluntary Action'.
He was one the founders of the Voluntary Action History Society (with which he is still active) and the Voluntary Sector Studies Network and has also been chair of the Association for Research in the Voluntary Sector (ARVAC).
The focus of his current research and writing is on the activities of unmanaged volunteers involved in non-bureaucratic organizational settings.
- D. Billis and C. Rochester (eds) (2019 forthcoming) A Handbook on Hybrid Organisations, Cheltenham, Edward Elgar
- C. Rochester (2013) Rethinking Voluntary Action: the beat of a different drum, Basingstoke. Palgrave Macmillan
- C. Rochester, G. Gosling, A. Penn and M. Zimmeck (2011) The Roots of Voluntary Action, Eastbourne, Sussex Academic Press
- C. Rochester, A. Ellis Paine and S. Howlett (2010) Volunteering and Society in the 21st Century, Basingstoke. Palgrave Macmillan
- M. Harris and C. Rochester (2001) Voluntary Organisations and Social Policy: Perspectives on Change and Choice, Basingstoke, Palgrave
- J. Davis Smith, C. Rochester and R. Hedley (1995) An Introduction to the Voluntary Sector, London; Routledge
- D. Billis and C. Rochester ‘Introduction: Hybridity and Hybrid Organisations’ in D. Billis and C. Rochester eds) (2019 forthcoming) A Handbook on Hybrid Organisations, Cheltenham, Edward Elgar
- C. Rochester, A. Ellis Paine and M. Hill ‘Volunteers in Hybrid Organisations’ in D. Billis and C. Rochester eds) (2019 forthcoming) A Handbook on Hybrid Organisations, Cheltenham, Edward Elgar
- ‘Introduction: Today’s Debate and the Experience of the Past’ in C. Rochester, G. Gosling, A. Penn and M. Zimmeck (2011) The Roots of Voluntary Action, Eastbourne, Sussex Academic Press
- C. Rochester and M. Torry ‘Faith-based Organizations and Hybridity: A Special Case?’ in D. Billis (2010) Hybrid Organizations and the Third Sector: Challenges for Practice, Theory and Policy, Basingstoke; Palgrave Macmillan
- Collaborative research: challenges and pitfalls’ in P. Alcock and D. Scott (2005) ‘Close Work’ Doing qualitative research in the voluntary sector, West Malling, Charities Aid Foundation
- ‘The Role of Boards in Small Voluntary Organisations’ in C. Cornforth (2003) The Governance of Public and Non-Profit Organisations, London; Routledge
- M. Harris and C, Rochester 'Working with Governing Bodies' in S.P. Osborne (1996) Managing in the Voluntary Sector, International Thomson Publishing
- ‘Volunteers and the Community’ in R. Hedley and J. Davis Smith (1992), Volunteering and Society, Bedford Square Press
- ‘Councils for Voluntary Service; The End of a Long Road? (2012) Voluntary Sector Review 3.2
- The Government’s Relations with the Voluntary Sector: What Next? An Interview with the Rt Hon Alun Michael M.P. (2012) Voluntary Sector Review 3.2
- ‘Review Article: One step forward and two steps backward? Towards a theory of voluntary action’ (2008) Voluntary Action (9, 1)
- P. Hankinson and C. Rochester (2005) ‘The Face and Voice of Volunteering: a suitable case for branding’ International Journal of Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Marketing (10; pp 93-105)
- M. Harris, P.Halfpenny and C. Rochester (2003) ‘An Expanded Role for Faith-Based Organisations? Lessons from the UK Jewish Voluntary Sector’ Journal of Social Policy (32, 1)
- M. Harris, J. Harris, R. Hutchison and C. Rochester (2002) ‘Merger in the British Voluntary Sector: The Example of HIV/AIDS Agencies’ Social Policy and Administration (36, 3; 291-305)
- ‘Legal advice as student community action: the case of the University of Bristol Law Clinic’ (2000) Voluntary Action (2, 3)
- ‘One size does not fit all: four models of volunteer management’ (1999) Voluntary Action (1,2) reprinted in J. Davis Smith and M. Locke (2007) Volunteering and the Test of Time, London, Institute for Volunteering Research
Colin is currently planning a sequel to his book on Rediscovering Voluntary Action, which moves on from his critique of the ways in which the voluntary sector and volunteering have been misinterpreted, to present a fuller account of a more useful and practical theory of voluntary action.back to top