I have just finished revising a chapter on multi-stakeholder partnerships for ICT4D that will be appearing next year, and this gave me an interesting opportunity to revisit some of my previous thinking on the subject.
The chapter concludes with eight things that I have come to think are essential for any such partnership to work effectively, and although these are all crucial I guess that they are more or less in descending order of importance:
- A political and infrastructural environment that is conducive to the implementation of partnerships. Without this, there is little point in starting.
- Engagement of all relevant stakeholders as early as possible in the initiative.
- The involvement of a high level champion, as well as leaders of all of the entities involved.
- The identification of clear and mutually agreed objectives for the partnership at the very start.
- Consistent monitoring and evaluation of the partnership and its intended outcomes. Again, this must be done from the beginning by ensuring a baseline study exists to enable impact and outcomes to be measured effectively.
- A clear and realistic resourcing framework, whereby each partner is explicit about the resources that they are willing to make available to the partnership, as well as their expectations of the benefits of being involved in the partnership. Mechanisms must also exist for the inclusion of additional partners at stages during the process where new needs are identified.
- An ethical framework that emphasises a focus on transparency, and helps build trust within the partnership.
- A management office and/or partnership broker that will ensure the day-to-day and effective management and delivery of the partnership.
It would be really interesting to know what others think, and whether there are more important factors that need to be included and I might have missed!
I have summarised the text in the image below (using Wordle):