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 +# Creating Partnerships
 +
 +This section is designed to be read in conjunction with other material
 +on this site - listed below - which deals with collaboration between
 +different interests involved in urban and rural regeneration programme
 +(renewal or revitalisation are terms also used).
 +
 +The term '​partnership'​ is now widely used where more than one
 +organisation or interest is involved in, for example, an urban or rural
 +regeneration programme. It may be too widely applied to situations where
 +one powerful organisation is doing no more than consult with others, or
 +mask fundamental differences of approach and objectives that will later
 +lead to conflict.
 +
 +Building Effective Local Partnerships (Local Government Management
 +Board) offers as a definition:
 +
 +A partnership is an agreement between two or more partners to work
 +together to achieve common aims.
 +
 +If you want to use any of the material, please contact me. David Wilcox
 +\<<​david@partnerships.org.uk>​\>​
 +
 +Introduction to Partnerships
 +----------------------------
 +
 +This Introduction - below - deals with:
 +
 +-   The characteristics of [successful and
 +    failed](part) partnerships.
 +-   ​[Making neighbourhood renewal work](part)
 +-   The difference between [participation and
 +    partnership](part)
 +-   Some apparently [easy answers](part) to
 +    partnership
 +-   ​[Guidelines](part) for creating partnerships
 +-   ​[Strategies](part) for partnership and participation
 +
 +Some of the topics are covered in more detail in other material on this
 +site.
 +
 +-   [The Guide to Development Trusts and
 +    Partnerships.](../​pguide/​index)
 +-   **New - A Guide to Partnerships** (rtf document) [download
 +    here](../​part/​partguide.rtf).
 +-   [An A-Z of Partnerships](AZP) (latest version
 +    [here](A-Zp) -200K)
 +-   ​[Information sheets](sheets) on creating community development
 +    trusts
 +-   [The Guide to Effective Participation](../​guide/​Sum) which
 +    deals with some of the wider issues of community involvement.
 +-   ​[Other Internet resources](../​part/​links)
 +
 +## Successful partnership
 +
 +The following factors for success emerge from surveys of partnerships,​
 +and workshops of practitioners involved in creating and running
 +partnerships:​
 +
 +-   ​Agreement that a partnership is necessary.
 +-   ​Respect and trust between different interests.
 +-   The leadership of a respected individual or individuals.
 +-   ​Commitment of key interests developed through a clear and open
 +    process.
 +-   The development of a shared vision of what might be achieved.
 +-   Time to build the partnership.
 +-   ​Shared mandates or agendas.
 +-   The development of compatible ways of working, and flexibility.
 +-   Good communication,​ perhaps aided by a facilitator.
 +-   ​Collaborative decision-making,​ with a commitment to achieving
 +    consensus.
 +-   ​Effective organisational management.
 +
 +Failed partnership
 +------------------
 +
 +The following are characteristics of failed attempts at partnership,​ or
 +warnings that something is going wrong:
 +
 +-   A history of conflict among key interests.
 +-   One partner manipulates or dominates.
 +-   Lack of clear purpose.
 +-   ​Unrealistic goals.
 +-   ​Differences of philosophy and ways of working.
 +-   Lack of communication.
 +-   ​Unequal and unacceptable balance of power and control.
 +-   Key interests missing from the partnership.
 +-   ​Hidden agendas.
 +-   ​Financial and time commitments outweigh the potential benefits.
 +
 +Drawn from workshops and sources [here](../​part/​links)
 +
 +------------------------------------------------------------------------
 +
 +### Making neighbourhood renewal work - in theory ​
 +
 +A report by Marilyn Taylor, published by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation
 +in March 2000, argues that effective Neighbourhood Management in the
 +future will depend on the following principles:
 +
 +-   ​Joined up strategy and action must be driven through all levels of
 +    public policy-making and provision - from top to bottom, from back
 +    room to front line -with transparency and multi-layered
 +    accountability as the guiding principles.
 +-   ​Joined up working will require fundamental changes to the cultures
 +    and career structures of both government and the public service
 +    professions.
 +-   A strong infrastructure is required in order to spread rather than
 +    protect knowledge, resources, skills and learning.
 +-   There is no change without risk - frameworks for performance
 +    measurement,​ regulation and audit must be broad enough to allow
 +    local autonomy.
 +-   There will be no sustainable change unless communities themselves
 +    are given the power and responsibility to take action.
 +-   As well as engaging communities in decision-making,​ Neighbourhood
 +    Management must open up quality public service employment
 +    opportunities to members of local communities and transfer assets
 +    into community ownership.
 +-   A long-term perspective is essential if integrated approaches to
 +    social inclusion are to be sustainable:​ enough time must be allowed
 +    to develop capacity and commitment in both communities and local
 +    public authorities.
 +-   A strong and unequivocal message from central government is required
 +    if past barriers to change are to be overcome.
 +
 +A summary of the report is at
 +<​http://​www.jrf.org.uk/​knowledge/​findings/​foundations/​pdf/​310.pdf>​
 +
 +### But is it working in practice? ​
 +
 +Another Joseph Roundation Foundation report, by a team at Goldsmith'​s
 +College, explored the experiences of residents involved in urban
 +regeneration projects and found all far from well on the ground. They
 +concluded:
 +
 +'​Communities are diverse and local interests may conflict with each
 +other. If the community is seen as homogenous then only the most
 +powerful voices will tend to be heard.
 +
 +'​Residents felt there was a gap between the rhetoric that demands
 +community participation in area regeneration programmes and the
 +realities of work on the ground.
 +
 +'The study did find examples of good practice, but residents also had
 +major criticisms to make. Too often, in their view, the mechanisms for
 +effective community involvement had been inadequate, with too little
 +time for effective consultation. Many commented that there had been
 +insufficient support and not enough training (a conclusion shared by
 +many professionals).'​
 +
 +Summary available at
 +[http://​www.jrf.org.uk/​knowledge/​findings/​housing/​pdf/​770.pdf](http://​www.jrf.org.uk/​knowledge/​findings/​housing/​pdf/​770.p.pdf)
 +
 +Participation consultant Drew Mackie reaches similar conclusions in an
 +article '​Dancing while standing still'
 +[http://​www.partnerships.org.uk/​articles/​still](../​articles/​still)
 +
 +He says: 'Two problems have emerged:
 +
 +'​Communities are under increasing pressure to become involved. This can
 +put a strain on the time of community activists and the community
 +itself. "I participated last week!" is becoming a frequent refrain as
 +communities are consulted on matters of health, transport, housing,
 +education, planning, economic development,​ etc. The quality of such
 +consultation is necessarily variable and many bodies are consulting
 +because they have to, not because they believe in it.
 +
 +'​Consultation itself does not guarantee delivery. A proper community
 +involvement programme will involve the delivery agencies so that false
 +expectations are not raised and delivery becomes part of the process.
 +Communities are increasingly complaining that their involvement has not
 +resulted in better delivery. "Why should I bother when nothing
 +happens?"'​
 +
 +## Participation and partnership
 +
 +It may be easier to develop an appropriate approach to partnership if
 +you have a simple theoretical framework for thinking about the wider
 +issues of participation. These ideas are developed in detail in the
 +[Guide to Effective Participation.](../​guide/​Sum)
 +
 +[Sherry Arnstein](../​part/​arn),​ writing in 1969 about citizen
 +involvement in planning processes in the United States, described a
 +ladder of participation. ![](image20.gif) **1** Manipulation and **2**
 +Therapy. Both are non participative. The aim is to cure or educate the
 +participants. The proposed plan is best and the job of participation is
 +to achieve public support by public relations.
 +
 +**3** Informing. A most important first step to legitimate
 +participation. But too frequently the emphasis is on a one way flow of
 +information. No channel for feedback.
 +
 +**4** Consultation. Again a legitimate step attitude surveys,
 +neighbourhood meetings and public enquiries. But Arnstein still feels
 +this is just a window dressing ritual.
 +
 +**5** Placation. For example, co-option of hand-picked '​worthies'​ onto
 +committees. It allows citizens to advise or plan ad infinitum but
 +retains for power holders the right to judge the legitimacy or
 +feasibility of the advice.
 +
 +**6** Partnership. Power is in fact redistributed through negotiation
 +between citizens and power holders. Planning and decision-making
 +responsibilities are shared e.g. through joint committees.
 +
 +**7** Delegated power. Citizens holding a clear majority of seats on
 +committees with delegated powers to make decisions. Public now has the
 +power to assure accountability of the programme to them.
 +
 +**8** Citizen Control. Have-nots handle the entire job of planning,
 +policy making and managing a programme e.g. neighbourhood corporation
 +with no intermediaries between it and the source of funds.
 +
 +Arnstein'​s ladder of participation suggests some levels are better than
 +others. I think it is more of a case of horses for courses different
 +levels are appropriate in different circumstances.
 +
 +### Five stances
 +
 +The key issue is what '​stance'​ you take if you are an organisation
 +initiating or managing a process of participation or partnership
 +building.
 +
 +I suggest thinking of five levels or stances which offer increasing
 +degrees of control to the others involved.
 +
 +**Information:​** The least you can do is tell people what is planned.
 +
 +**Consultation**:​ You identify the problems, offer a number of options,
 +and listen to the feedback you get.
 +
 +![](image21.gif)
 +
 +**Deciding together:** You encourage others to provide some additional
 +ideas and options, and join in deciding the best way forward.
 +
 +**Acting together:** Not only do different interests decide together
 +what is best, but they form a partnership to carry it out.
 +
 +**Supporting independent community initiatives:​** You help others do
 +what they want perhaps within a framework of grants, advice and support
 +provided by the resource holder.
 +
 +The '​lower'​ levels of participation keep control with the initiator but
 +they lead to less commitment from others. Partnership operates at the
 +levels of Deciding Together and Acting Together.
 +
 +Information is essential for all participation but is not participatory
 +in itself.
 +
 +------------------------------------------------------------------------
 +
 +## Apparently easy answers to partnership
 +
 +When local authorities,​ private sector bodies, and indeed voluntary
 +organisations,​ are faced with tight timetables and firm guidelines it is
 +difficult to think through the complexities for participation and
 +partnership. There is a strong temptation to go for a quick fix and hope
 +to sort things out later. Here are a few health warnings on different
 +forms of partnership.
 +
 +### Set up a forum
 +
 +A forum may seem an easy way to get a wide range of interests together
 +and act as a sounding board, but should it be labelled a partnership?​
 +For example:
 +
 +-   Will the different interests be able to develop a common vision or
 +    will they simply argue for their individual priorities?
 +-   How representative will the forum be? Will it just represent large,
 +    well-organised groups?
 +-   Will the implementing organisations be bound by forum decisions?
 +
 +### Create special interest fora
 +
 +Rather than putting all interests together, give them each a forum. But
 +then:
 +
 +-   Are they a self-selecting group?
 +-   Who decides the issue or area to be covered?
 +-   How will an overall vision be developed?
 +-   Will it be possible to support and service all the fora: what
 +    resources are available?
 +-   Will there be sufficient interested people with time to spare?
 +
 +### Appoint community representatives
 +
 +Instead of creating more organisations,​ give community representatives
 +seats on the decision-making bodies. However:
 +
 +-   Who will choose the representatives and on what basis?
 +-   Will they have the same support and access to information as others
 +    on the committee?
 +-   How will they discover and express the views of community interests?
 +-   What checks will people have on their representatives?​
 +
 +### Set up a Community Development Trust
 +
 +Development trusts are non-profit-distributing companies, which may seek
 +charitable status. They have their own staff and are governed by a Board
 +including a range of interests. They are described in more detail
 +elsewhere in the [information sheets](sheets) but they may not
 +always be the most appropriate form of partnership.
 +
 +Consider:
 +
 +-   Do you have the time and expertise to create and run a company?
 +-   Will funding be available to pay staff in early years?
 +-   Will there be ways in which the trust can earn income to maintain
 +    operations in the longer term?
 +
 +### Form a steering group of all interests
 +
 +A steering group would have more say than a forum, but not control
 +resources like a Development Trust. It may seem a reasonable compromise,
 +but consider:
 +
 +-   Will the members expect more power than implementing bodies are
 +    prepared to give?
 +-   Will the different interests have sufficiently similar styles of
 +    working to operate together?
 +-   How will steering group members be selected, and how will they
 +    relate to their '​constituents'?​
 +-   Will they able to deliver, or will they just be another talking
 +    shop?
 +
 +### Run a Planning for Real exercise
 +
 +Instead of relying solely on formal structures, using workshop
 +techniques allows participation to be taken to residents and others.
 +Planning for Real is one powerful technique which allows participants to
 +build models of the neighbourhoods they want, and develop action plans.
 +It provides more active involvement than public meetings or fora.
 +However:
 +
 +-   Does running the exercise imply that the results will be adopted?
 +    Are budgets sufficiently flexible for this?
 +-   Will a development worker be available to support groups which form
 +    around the ideas developed?
 +-   Will there be time for ideas to be worked through?
 +-   Who will implement?
 +
 +### Get the money first, worry about partnership later
 +
 +Dress up funding bids with token representation,​ then bring people on
 +board when the money is there. This may be convenient for the bidding
 +body however:
 +
 +-   Will it then be possible to gain the commitment of other partners
 +    whose support, skills and funds may be needed?
 +-   Will local groups challenge rather than support plans which have
 +    been developed without them?
 +-   Will the funder see through the ploy?
 +-   Will plans be flexible enough to respond to local needs and demands?
 +
 +------------------------------------------------------------------------
 +
 +## Guidelines for partnership
 +
 +Here are some guidelines which may offer you a way of deciding what sort
 +of partnership you may wish to create, and how to make a start.
 +
 +1.  Clarify your own aims and objectives in forming a partnership. What
 +    are you trying to achieve, and how will you explain that?
 +2.  Identify the stakeholders the key interests who can help or hinder
 +    the project or programme and put yourself in their shoes. Who holds
 +    the power?
 +3.  Consider who you really need as partners, and who would really want
 +    to be a partner. Some stakeholders may simply want to be consulted.
 +4.  Before approaching potential partners, make sure you have support
 +    and agreement within your own organisation about working with
 +    others.
 +5.  Make informal contact with partners to find out about their
 +    attitudes and interests before putting formal proposals.
 +6.  Communicate with your partners in language they will understand,
 +    focusing on what they may want to achieve.
 +7.  Plan the partnership process over time. For example, a new
 +    organisation may well take a year to set up.
 +8.  Use a range of methods to involve people workshop sessions as well
 +    as formal meetings. Be sociable.
 +9.  Encourage ideas from your partners. Ownership leads to commitment.
 +10. Be open and honest.
 +
 +## Strategies for Partnerships and Participation ​
 +
 +These guidelines were developed in 1999 by the Joseph Rowntree
 +Foundation at the request of the UK Government'​s Department for
 +Transport and the Regions. They provide guidance for Single Regeneration
 +Budget bids:
 +
 +#### Getting started ​
 +
 +-   Map local organisations;​
 +-   ​Understand local priorities and skills;
 +-   Build confidence through early project work;
 +-   ​Develop a vision and action plans with local communities.
 +
 +#### Involving communities in partnerships ​
 +
 +-   ​Create partnership structures that work for local communities;​
 +-   Make resources available for community groups;
 +-   ​Arrange training for both community activists and professionals;​
 +-   Help community groups with administrative and financial procedures.
 +
 +#### Creating strong local organisations with their own assets ​
 +
 +-   ​Develop a partnership '​forward strategy',​ including a strong role
 +    for community groups;
 +-   ​Consider possible models for successor organisations including:
 +    development trusts; neighbourhood management organisations;​ LETS;
 +    and credit unions.
 +
 +#### Developing an infrastructure to build and sustain community organisations ​
 +
 +-   ​Accept that community organisations need long-term support;
 +-   ​Contribute to the better co-ordination of training and support
 +    services;
 +-   Take steps to secure pre-bid resources for community groups.
 +
 +#### Monitoring progress ​
 +
 +-   ​Establish a framework for evaluating both concrete outputs and key
 +    processes in community involvement;​
 +-   ​Ensure appropriate monitoring of progress both by the partnership
 +    and by Government Offices for the Regions (Regional Development
 +    Agencies after April 1999).
 +
 +Report at:
 +<​http://​www.jrf.org.uk/​knowledge/​findings/​foundations/​pdf/​F169.pdf>​
 +
 +[Back to Partnerships at Partnerships Online](../​part/​index)
 +
 +------------------------------------------------------------------------
 +
 +Prepared by David Wilcox david@partnerships.org.uk October 23 2000 
 +
  
partnerships/azp/part.txt ยท Last modified: 2017/06/12 10:20 (external edit)