Publication

Global challenges call for innovation and partnership approaches. To this end, UN Global Pulse is taking up the concept of innovation partnerships in a new guide. Published in July 2023, it offers practitioners support to make their partnerships successful.

Innovation partnerships, similar to multi-stakeholder partnerships (MSPs), represent collaborative efforts where diverse partners join forces to develop novel solutions to complex challenges. Given the distinct nature of the endeavor of creating new value, these collaborations require unique mindsets, conditions, and practices. To address the specific needs of innovation partnershipsUN Global Pulse compiled a practical guide. The recent publication aims to introduce key concepts of innovation partnerships and elaborates on the conditions that help to set them up for success. Through an extensive overview of tools and guidelines, it intends to support practitioners in choosing appropriate means to enhance the efficacy of their collaborations.

To that end, the guide covers essential concepts such as the innovation cycle and the partnership continuum. It introduces the partnering cycle as a roadmap for guiding partnerships and explores tools relating to partner selection, financial resource mobilization, and legal pathways. Along the way, the guide integrates links to supplementary resources for those seeking a deeper understanding.

Other than MSPs that prioritize member equality in all stages, innovation partnerships span a continuum from transactional one-way relationships to collaborative, transformational relationships. Nonetheless, the guide’s insights can benefit practitioners in both areas. One take-away surely holds true for all partnerships: While it remains essential to achieve a project’s objectives, it is equally important to manage the partnering process effectively and professionally – a competency that can be cultivated.

For those interested, the full guide is available for download here.

For context: UN Global Pulse is the UN Secretary-General’s Innovation Lab – an experimentation hub that helps to support and advance the UN Charter.

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