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In 2017, the second year since the launch of the SDGs, TPI continued to build momentum around its vision for a world where cross-sector collaboration for the SDGs is mainstreamed, scaled and optimized.

Global engagement and promoting cross-sector collaboration

This year, alongside  the International Chamber of Commerce, TPI led private sector engagement in the Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation (GPEDC)’s second High Level Meeting in Nairobi. In addition to leading the plenary session on the private sector and sitting on the steering group for the plenary session on multi-stakeholder partnerships, TPI co-hosted a day-long Business Forum on the role of the private sector as a partner in development, led a side event on in-country platforms to catalyse collaboration for Agenda 2030, and, with colleagues from PRC and CLI, launched the Promoting Effective Partnering (PEP) initiative.

TPI staff and advisors spoke and facilitated sessions at a wide range of conferences, events and webinars throughout the year, including the 2016 World Cancer Congress in Paris, the second High-Level Meeting of the GPEDC in Nairobi, the Global Green Growth Forum 2017 in Copenhagen, the Royal Society of Medicine’s event: “Global Health Partnerships: Buzzword or Breakthrough?”, the 2017 OECD Forum in Paris, the BOND annual conference, the European Commission’s European Development Days 2017, and Global Partnerships Week 2017.

Building systemic, institutional and individual capacity across all societal sectors to develop and support effective partnerships.

Throughout 2017, TPI worked with a range of organisations to support their institutional capacity at various levels: conducting a full Fit for Partnering assessment for World Vision, in order to support the implementation of its strategic initiative on effective engagement in cross-sector partnerships; working with UNICEF on a broad action research programme to maximise results for children through public and private sector engagements, in particular multi-stakeholder initiatives; supporting Sightsavers to develop their internal capacity to work in consortium; working with the European Food Safety Authority to support their new Business Service department (BuS) to expand and improve the partnering culture within the EFSA; supporting FEMSA in their stakeholder mapping, engagement and management efforts; working with the United Nations Kosovo Team to support their strategy to engage business, and working with CARE Rwanda to review the implementation of its partnerships strategy and produce recommendations for further strategy development, as well as a case study on a key pilot partnership.

The Partnering Initiative continued to update and develop its flagship Building Effective Partnerships for Development training, aimed at individual partnership practitioners. During the financial year, TPI held open trainings in Oxford, Barcelona, and Washington DC. In June 2017, TPI and the UN Global Compact ran an exclusive session for UN staff on the latest trends and insights around partnering with business. Working with Bupa and the UICC, TPI developed a training course on effective partnering against NCDs, consisting of an online mastercourse and a one day workhop.

TPI has also continued to support global level capacity building through developing tools and guidebooks. With BUPA and the UICC, TPI developed a guidebook for non-profit organisations who wish to partner with companies against Non Communicable Diseases (NCDs): Better Together: Unleashing the Power of the Private Sector to Tackle Non-Communicable DiseasesIn collaboration with the Practitioner Hub for Inclusive Business, TPI has expanded its set of tools specifically designed to support partnerships for inclusive business; the most recent tool is the ‘go/no-go’ checklist for an inclusive business partnershipwhich outlines eight essential criteria for moving forward with a partnership.

Research and dissemination of best practice

Over the last year, we have continued to expand and intensify our collaborations with our peers to research and disseminate best-practice in cross-sector collaboration.

  • The Promoting Effective Partnerships Facility (PEP) is an ongoing collaborative initiative funded by the Dutch Ministry for Development, focusing on two core elements: knowledge development and dissemination and providing access to support for partnerships.
  • TPI has also been supporting the Evidence for MS Platforms project,  aiming to identify the evidence needed to assess the effectiveness of multi-stakeholder platforms, and help platforms assess their contribution.
  • TPI worked with the German platform for multi-stakeholder partnerships, Partnerships2030, to organise an international knowledge exchange for MSP Support Platforms, which took place in October 2017.

Looking ahead: Plans for the coming year

In 2017-2018, The Partnering Initiative will consolidate and expand its existing areas of work, supporting organisations, partnerships and individuals; innovating, incorporating and disseminating new knowledge, skills and tools and developing and disseminating tool books and training.

As part of its Global Impact Programme, Business Partnership Action, TPI will continue its support of existing collaboration hubs as well as aiming to launch new in-country platforms.

On capacity building, The Partnering Initiative will run its flagship Building Effective Partnerships for Sustainable Development course in Oxford as well as overseas, with current plans including Washington DC & New York.

In September 2017, the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) awarded TPI a contract to help leverage strategic partnerships in MCC’s program design and implementation. TPI will be working with MCC to develop the strategic direction, architecture and infrastructure needed for MCC and country staff to engage effectively in partnerships. This is a tremendously exciting opportunity for TPI to bring together the sum of our knowledge, tools and programme components to support a single organisation to holistically drive a step-change in its partnerships.

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Julia Gilbert

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