Investment in a partnership approach can leverage significant added value and additional resources. By developing this capability, you can achieve economies of scale, avoid duplication of effort and benefit from diverse skills and expertise. You can also build a strong case for securing new resources to build partnership working and deliver joint adaptation projects.
Key aspects include:
The partnership should include people from diverse backgrounds, including under-represented groups and put steps in place to ensure they are valued and can contribute actively. You will need people who can support, lead and co-ordinate activities and also people who can provide specific knowledge such as local knowledge, risk assessment, data and analytics or funding and finance expertise.
Sharing assets such as data, technology and communication resources will enable the partnership to go further, faster. Where appropriate, large scale adaptation projects or assets such as hazard warning systems, blue and green infrastructure or coastal adaptation measures can be jointly owned, managed or developed.
Setting up, leading, and coordinating partnerships requires significant time and effort. Some partnerships are run by volunteers who give significant amounts of time. In many cases funding will be required to pay for staff time, and partners will need to make a strong case for funding co-ordination of the partnership. Many adaptation partnerships have a remit to deliver specific projects and initiatives and need to identify funding sources and develop funding models that draw in public, private and third sector finance.
Climate change is a wicked problem. This means that a diverse skill set across sectors, backgrounds and experiences is needed to adapt. A key element of an effective adaptation partnership is the identification, development and implementation of relevant skills and capabilities.
Develop case for dedicated coordinator role - There is significant amount of work associated with a climate adaptation partnership. Whilst successful volunteer led partnerships do exist, these rely on significant volunteer time and support. In many cases a dedicated coordinator role is needed to lead the secretariat, support delivering, build relationship and leverage additional investment. Work should be undertaken to make the case for funding a dedicated coordinator position in line with member organisation’s requirements and processes. This can be part of the wider business case development process (Partnership Action 1B).
Funding will be needed to support the partnership as well as take adaptation actions. Early work to identify existing funding opportunities and potential funders may enable quick-wins and build the foundations for future funding and financing opportunities.
Map funding opportunities and create shared strategy to ensure partner organisations are not competing against each other for resource. Utilise existing/established governance and delivery model to identify resources available. Certain funding opportunities may require formal partnership agreement.
Build relationships with funders to develop rapport and support co-design early on. Attend networking events and set up introductory meetings with relevant funding bodies.
Adaptation is inherently local and therefore needs to be locally relevant. Steps to understand the ‘place’ will be key to informing work programming and tailoring communication. Early action should be undertaken to highlight organisations and groups who may be able to contribute resource, as well as identifying those who may be most in need of such resources.
Climate adaptation partnerships involve multiple members and activities. A coordinator who has oversight of the partnership and can lead on organisation, collaboration and delivery is pivotal. By developing and funding a coordinator position, the partnership will be supported by a key individual / have a clear focal point.
Description: The funding and finance landscape for adaptation partnerships can be complex. There is a need to commit time to learn about funding and finance generally. This will aid understanding and identification of what types of financing are most applicable to the partnership and its activities.
Diverse funding and finance options will be needed to sustain the partnership and implement the actions that partners develop. Alongside this, partners should put in place a transparent approach to selecting projects and agreeing resource allocations that is true to the vision, values and principles of the partnership.
Examples and Further Resources:
As the partnership evolves, so too should the staff and skills base. Committing resource for staff development ensures members are aware of new developments in the field, have the opportunity to progress personally and may be more inclined to stay involved with the partnership.
Resources: Professional accreditation, where appropriate, should form part of the continuous professional development. Society for the Environment is responsible for awarding the title of Chartered Environmentalist (CEnv) through its 23 licensed member bodies. These include the Institution of Environmental Sciences (IES), the Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management (CIEEM), the Chartered Institute for Water and Environmental Management (CIWEM) and Institute for Environmental Management and Assessment (IEMA).
The partnership will be delivering major milestones or projects at this stage and will be able to show how the resources committed to the partnership are delivering multiple benefits. A crucial aspect of securing ongoing and future resources involves demonstrating the impact of previous and current funding and showing how future resource commitments will build on these investments and deliver further benefits.
Short term, smaller funders may have supported the undertaking of initial activities, but for the partnership, and the adaptation projects it supports, to grow and be sustainable in the future, the leveraging of long term funding and finance is required. Concerted effort from the partnership is needed to ensure funding and finance for adaptation projects and activities is directed at those people, places, and assets most in need.