Question 8

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Do you know what benefits your government partner in a partnership?

This might help you find out

What are benefits or motivations for government to partner?

Suggestions for further reading



This might help you find out

Do you think your government partners benefit most from your partnership by helping to:


strengthen government’s capacity: for example because:

  • government wants to generate new expertise that can be applied elsewhere or
  • they are aware that partnering skills have long term strategic advantages?


strengthen government’s political mandate: for example because

  • government wants political credibility, reputation and legitimacy to yield positive results in elections, or
  • wants to introduce accountability
  • or development policy to improve relationships with communities and better fulfill their expectations


improve government’s policy design & implementation: for example because government

  • is keen to gain experience with new approaches in policy design and implementation or
  • is motivated to have a partnership dialogue, to give government and politicians a better understanding of the constraints that private actors, including NGOs, face


enhance government’s service provision: because for example

  • it is an important performance indicator, when weak implementation is a risk for government or
  • government is motivated to share information and technology
  • but also if government is motivated to save costs by leveraging private sector resources


What do we mean by benefits and motivations for government to partner?

leverage public resources

partnering with the private sector allows for leveraging resources for development impact. A related motive is risk diversification. Partnering enables public sector organisations to explore new approaches towards development aid and to share responsibilities with private sector actors, which can result in more manageable costs and reduced risks for all parties involved.


enhanced service provision

Partnering can help the public sector to make service provision more effective and efficient. This is realised through sharing information and technology, and save costs by leveraging private sector resources.


improved policy design

Public actors work in partnerships because both poicy design and implementation benefit from leveraging resources, information sharing and dialogue. Partnership dialogue gives politicians and other public officials a better understanding of the constraints that private actors face.


strengthened political mandate

Partnering can provide the ability to gain political credibility and improve relationships with communities. For governments in particular, partnering can increase legitimacy and may yield positive results in elections. In addition, public actors can introduce development policy themes (such as Corporate Social Responsibility) and accountability in the programs and activities of NGOs and business through partnerships.


Strengthened capacity

Partnering can increase capacity of public actors through learning from each other. Partnering allows public sector organisations to generate new expertise that can subsequently be applied elsewhere.


Suggestions for further reading

Brinkerhoff, J.M. 2002. Partnerships for International Development. Rhetoric or Results? Lynne Rienner Publishers, London


Caplan, K. 2001. Perceptions of Partnership. Understanding what Public, Private and NGO Partners May Offer. Practitioner Note Series. Business Partners for Development.


Caplan, K., Payne, L. 2000. Public Sector Workshop Report. The Workshop series. Business Partners for Development.

Fox 2002
in Van Tulder, R., & Pfisterer, S., 2013. Creating Partnering Space. Exploring the Right Fit for Sustainable Development Partnerships. Published in Seitanidi, M. M., Crane, A., (eds) 2013. Social Partnerships and Responsible Business. A Research Handbook. London: Routhledge.


Gardiner, P.D. in Rwelamila, P., Henjewele, C., 2014. Addressing the Missing Link in PPP Projects: What Constitutes the Public? Journal of Management in Engineering. July 2014.


Jones, D. (2002). Benefits to the Public Sector of Tri-Sector Partnerships. Public, Private & Civil Society Partnerships Providing Water and Sanitation to the Poor. Practitioner Note Series, Building Partnerships for development in Water & Sanitation.


Klijn, E. 2002 Partnership Arrangements : Governmental Rhetoric or Governance Scheme? Public Administration Review • March/April 2002, Vol. 62, No. 2
Klijn, E.H., Koppenjan, J.F.M., 2000 Public Management and Policy Networks, Public Management: An International Journal of Research and Theory. Volume: 2, Issue: 2, pp. 135-158


McGuire, M., 2006. Collaborative Public Management: Assessing What We Know and How We Know It. Public Administration Review. December, Special Issue


Pfisterer, S. 2013. Partnering with the private sector. PPPLab., 2016 Explorations 02: Business Models in Food and Water PPPs


Regéczi,D., 2005 Limited Partnership: The Lack of Sustainable Development in Relation to Participation in Hungarian Public–Private Partnerships. Business Strategy and the Environment. Volume: 14, pp. 205–215


Resh, W., Siddiki, S., McConnell, W., 2014. Does the Network Centrality of Government Actors Matter? Examining the Role of Government Organizations in Aquaculture Partnerships. Review of Policy Research, Volume 31, Number 6


Reynaers, A. 2013. Public Values in Public–Private Partnerships. Public Administration review.

Robertson., 1995
in Resh, W., Siddiki, S., McConnell, W., 2014. Does the Network Centrality of Government Actors Matter? Examining the Role of Government Organizations in Aquaculture Partnerships. Review of Policy Research, Volume 31, Number 6

Soublière, J.,Cloutier, C. 2015.Explaining levels of local government involvement in service delivery: the dynamics of cross-sector partnerships in Malawi. Public Administration and Development 35, 192–205.

Stott, L.
, 2011.The Partnering with Governments Navigator. Building effective collaboration with the public sector in Africa. London: International Business Leaders Forum.


Vangen, S., Hayes, J.P. & Cornforth, C., 2014. Governing cross-sector, inter-organisational collaborations. Public Management Review, DOI: 10.1080/14719037.2014.903658.


Walker, J., 2007. Government as partners in Sustainable Development: a meta-study. The Partnering Initiative.

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