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What each sector brings to the table

The nature of each type of stakeholder (government, business, foundation and so on) leads to quite different priorities, values and attributes. In addition to these general attributes, each stakeholder brings different resources, competencies, and aspirations that can potentially – through successful partnering – be brought together around a common vision.

The diagram and sector lists below provides a generic description of each of the main types of stakeholder and some prompts for the resources that they potentially bring to partnership. In general, the closer a partnership aligns with the strategic objectives an organisation, the more likely it is to bring its full range of resources – including financial resources – to the partnership.

Since no two contexts are exactly alike, this overview is for guidance only. It is a prompt for thinking creatively about the different types of resources that stakeholders can bring.


  • A market-based / value creation approach
  • Brand power
  • Marketing, advertising and communications expertise
  • Direct access to, and influence with, customer base and employees
  • The products and services they deliver, including financial products such as micro-lending
  • Technical innovation / efficiency / management
  • Direct influence within its value chains, including purchasing decisions
  • Infrastructure / logistics l Financial and in-kind contributions
  • (Generally) an appetite for risk
  • A ‘solutions’ mindset and a focus on results
  • Access to customers, employees, suppliers, peer companies, investors, training providers


  • Playing a trusted convening role early on and/or hosting the partnership or providing the secretariat
  • Undertaking context analysis, providing key information and essential data to the partnership
  • Undertaking monitoring and evaluation
  • Drawing out learning and developing partnership case studies
  • Empowering citizens who understand SDGs
  • Teaching to ensure skills for the new economy, etc
  • Teaching (as well as research), including teacher training
  • A breeding ground for innovation / leadership
  • Evidence-based policy advice for joint advocacy
  • Open data collection and sharing
  • Strong regional and global networks

Civil society

  • (Particularly international NGOs): Access to international knowledge and resources
  • Technical knowledge / delivery capacity
  • Deep knowledge of, and reach and access to, communities and people
  • Legitimacy / social capital / influence (can be particularly strong in faith-based organisations)
  • Ability to organise and engage people (e.g. around advocacy)

Development Cooperation

  • (Catalytic) funding
  • Political connections and influence
  • Technical assistance
  • Convening and facilitation (due to networks with government, civil society and private sector), especially in early stages of partnership formation


  • Legitimacy and independence;
  • Extensive technical support, knowledge and capacity
  • Political connections and influence
  • Global network and access to knowledge and solutions from around the world
  • Norms and standards-setting
  • Convening power
  • (In certain cases): funding


  • Democratic legitimacy
  • Convening ability
  • Mandate for long term development planning
  • Public budget / spending
  • Public services delivery infrastructure
  • National ‘hard’ infrastructure (roads, rail, water, power etc.)
  • Policy, taxation and regulatory framework
  • Education / skills and capacity building (e.g. agricultural extension services)
  • Provision of land
  • Ability to operate at scale and integrate approaches to deliver sustainably


  • Funding (often with fewer restrictions attached than other traditional funding sources)
  • Networks
  • (Potentially) technical assistance
  • (Potentially) linkages to ‘parent’ organisation (company, family)
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