[EN] Partos Meet Up for the Strategic Partnerships: New roles and partnerships in international advocacy

Nieuws

The traditional “North/South divide” and the roles that were assumed with this divide is outdated and many organizations are reinventing their relationships through the formation of alliances, secretariats, or multistakeholder partnership platforms. Decision-making power is being shifted both horizontally (in networks) and vertically (from donor towards local groups).


On the 10th of September more than 70 people gathered for another Partos Meet Up for Strategic Partnerships to learn about changes in the roles and partnership relations in international advocacy. 

The lessons of three different alliances were shared, making use of the following questions: 

  1. How did the role and added value of Dutch civil society organizations in international advocacy initiatives change?
  2. What can we learn from examples where decision-making power in advocacy was effectively shifted from funding organization to implementing partner, and from partner organization to local groups or citizens?
  3. How do the lead organizations in the partnership deal with the need for trust versus control over the decision-making in advocacy?
  4. What are challenges and potential risks and how can we deal with those risks while reducing control


Shereen Essof of Jass, shared the experiences as a member to the Count Me In Network; Charlotte Crocket presented the Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict, which has it secretariat in the Netherlands, and Stefan Verwer of Oxfam Novib talked about the FAIR network that unites partners in the Fiscal Accountability for Inequality Reduction – Even it Up Program. 


Main Lessons: Summary
On role and added value:

  • Build collective power bottom up by connecting local priorities, voice and expertise to global strategies; 
  • Strengthen the work on defending and reclaiming civic space including the digital civic space; 
  • Make it your role to shift and balance power: actively organize access to decision-making and resources.

As equal partners in the partnership/network;

  • Involve all partners from the beginning, make time to get to know each other; develop programs bottom up
  • Be open about each organization’s individual interests; define shared values;
  • Make the partnership object of joint learning: how are we doing? Are we still in line with the values of our partnership?
  • Decide together how you organize power in your partnership;
  • Create a space for joint learning; organize feedback loops; regularly reassess the context together.
  • Build flexibility into your program and budgets to react to urgent issues and changes in the context.On the 10th of September more than 70 people gathered for another Partos Meet Up for Strategic Partnerships to learn about changes in the roles and partnership relations in international advocacy.

Download a summary of the presentations