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Systems Change Activation: Empowering philanthropy’s catalytic role in transformational PPPPs

Launched at COP28 in December 2023, the groundbreaking report is designed to inspire and help equip philanthropy with knowledge and insights to play a far more active role in transformative Public-Private-Philanthropy partnerships (PPPPs).

The research has been supported substantively and financially by our partners, Laudes Foundation and the African Climate Foundation, and developed in association with the World Association of PPP Units & Professionals (WAPPP). It is based on extensive research drawing on the real experience of 46 PPPPs around the world.

While transformed systems may deliver significant benefits to all, making the necessary changes usually requires a major injection of what we call ‘activation energy’, a term borrowed from chemistry to denote the minimum energy required to start a transformational reaction.

Philanthropy is the essential piece, that can inject that activation energy and ignite public private partnerships.

The report begins by defining PPPPs and outlining their crucial importance in delivering systems change towards the SDGs and beyond. It then uses the levers of change framework to assess 46 existing PPPPs, and showcases the still insufficiently acknowledged “activation” role of philanthropy in PPPPs. Finally, the report introduces next steps for fulfilling the potential of PPPPs and explores how foundations can fulfil their role and partnering potential with excellence.

The report includes our newly published PPPP Library, which includes details of all 46 PPPPs analysed, and aims to provide a resource to PPPP practitioners globally.

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