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Facilitating multi-stakeholder partnerships to foster sustainable and inclusive food systems


In today’s complex and interconnected world the need for collaboration and partnerships between different interest groups and across the boundaries of business, government, civil society and science is clear and often called for by leaders. But bringing about change in society is no simple matter. It requires deep understanding of what enables and what stops people from getting along and working together. It requires patience and time. And it requires commitment from leaders. However, with the right mindset and by making use of the sorts of practical process steps and tools offered by this course much can be done to unlock the vast human potential for cooperation and innovation.

Multiple stakeholders, multiple interests This course covers state-of-the-art thinking about designing and facilitating multi stakeholder partnerships (MSPs) and institutional change. You will learn what MSPs are, why we need them, what their key elements are and how to design and facilitate them.

We will work highly interactive by building on participant’s own experiences. You will have plenary discussions, work on group assignments, engage in role-plays and undertake fieldwork to explore a real life MSP. You will practice a wide range of participatory methodologies and tools. The facilitators follow a flexible programme that allows adaptation to the specific needs of individuals and the group.

Course objectives
Upon completion of the course you will be able to:
- understand the concept and rationale of multi-stakeholder partnerships and institutional change;
- have a good insight into the key principles for effective MSPs;
- analyse different types of multi-stakeholder partnerships in terms of the issues at stake, the stakeholders, their interests, power relations and conflicts;
- use a broad range of participatory methodologies and tools in MSPs;
- design an extended MSP;
- assess the impact of your personal style in facilitation, communication, leadership and dealing with conflicts.

Target audience We welcome participants who are involved, or will be involved in the future, in the facilitation of multi-stakeholder partnerships. You may work for an NGO, government, private sector organisation, research facility, university or consultancy and you are in the challenging position to design, facilitate or participate in MSPs. Proficiency in English is required.

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