Richard Blume; Miriam Karell; Andrew Outhwaite , pp. 156. TEK/avd. för maskinteknik, 2006.
Today, global socio-ecological problems are too complex and urgent for isolated actions, and cross-sector collaboration is increasingly required to generate transformational change towards a sustainable future. Partnerships between businesses and civil society organisations (CSOs) in particular have the potential to achieve the required change for sustainability. However, the ‘backcasting’ approach used in this study highlights a gap between current approaches and what partnerships might look like in a sustainable future. Research draws on literature, eighteen interviews and an action research project with Interface Europe. Results indicate that: 1) in the current paradigm shift, collaboration provides a competitive advantage; 2) individual, organisational and societal benefits of partnering are significant; 3) understanding the art and science of partnering is needed to make them work 4) organisational development and strategy affect partnership type and outcomes; 5) Corporate Social Responsibility efforts initiate cross-sector partnerships, but are responsive and fall short of being strategic; 6) articulation of visions for a sustainable future is rare and; 7) most partnerships are not aligned with core business strategies. In conclusion, dialogue across all sectors is advocated to co-create a sustainable future and The Natural Step Framework is recommended to align business planning and partnership strategies with sustainability.
Andrew Outhwaite (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Miriam Karell (email@example.com)
Richard Blume (firstname.lastname@example.org)