On the 13th and 14th of April, ahead of the first high level meeting of the Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation, a group of practitioners of partnership platforms met to exchange experience and learning during a 2-day workshop convened by The Partnering Initiative.
Partnership platforms set out to systematically drive the creation of cross-sector partnerships to tackle complex business and societal issues. While forming an essential part of the architecture required to foster public/private collaboration towards the post-2015 development agenda, they are a relatively new phenomenon and there is little good practice guidance for their operation.
The Platforms for Partnership workshop, supported by the Swedish International Development Agency drew on the knowledge and experience of 25 participants from 15 different countries, with mixed backgrounds from private sector, government, academia and NGOs. The workshop aimed to draw out practical learning on good practice in building and running partnership platforms as well as engaging in collaborative problem solving around key challenges.
The group identified a set of key challenges faced by partnership platforms – from the difficulties of engaging government to the need for a sustainable business model – and, through two days of fruitful discussions and rich debates, jointly designed solutions to address these flexibly in a range of contexts and scenarios. These solutions were combined into a practical vision of the “building blocks” required to deliver a high performing platform.
The insights and learning gained from the workshop will feed into a TPI research report on partnership platforms, to be released in June 2014.
Beyond learning and practical solutions, a crucial outcome of this joint work was the consensus on the need for a community of practice around partnership platforms and a strong sense of energy and commitment to working together across platforms to increase the scale, effectiveness, and added value of platform partnerships around the world.
TPI will be working with the participants of the workshop to develop a community of practice in this area. If you would be interested in joining the community, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.