We compiled these resources as part of our year-long learning theme on Communities Collaborating. We hope the resources
you find on this page will be helpful tools for you as you
think about your own community collaborative.
Please don't consider any of the following resources
as definitive guides to collaboration - they make suggestions
and point the way; feel free to adapt them to the needs of
Let us know if we have missed something,
or if you know of a resource we should include here. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
with your suggestions.
This self evaluation tool was developed to
assist existing and forming collaborations. The tool is a
self-assessment exercise allowing groups to rate their collaboration
on key factors. Key factors examined here include goals, communication,
sustainability, evaluation, political climate, resources,
catalysts, policies/laws/regulations, history, connectedness,
leadership, community development, and understanding community.
Read more HERE.
Paul Mattessich, Executive Director at the
Wilder Research Center, presents twenty factors that can make
or break any group effort. With the caveat that there’s
no foolproof way to predict the outcome of any undertaking
that involves people and organizations working together, this
article highlights a few basic checkpoints that can be quite
revealing. The content of the article is adapted from the
What Makes It Work. Read more HERE.
Bethlehem Projects of Niagara, a nonprofit
organization which provides transitional housing and life
skills programs for people living in poverty, recently announced
the construction of a 40-unit apartment for its clients. Two
critical ingredients – a strong community network and
the gift of donated labour – were responsible for laying
the foundation for this successful undertaking. Opportunities
Niagara, a multisectoral collaboration for poverty reduction,
played a vital role in facilitating the partnership behind
this initiative. Download the paper HERE.
This article by the
Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University describes
a review of research on collaboration. The research was completed
by a group of leading U.S university based centers that study
philanthropy and members of the nonprofit field. The article
explores benefits, challenges, and guidelines for collaborations.
Read more HERE.
This paper provides an excellent overview
of the theory and practice of civic collaboration. It outlines
not only the benefits and challenges of collaborations, but
also important principles for successful collaborations versus
other models of cooperation. Read more HERE.
The Wilder Foundation’s Collaboration
Factors Inventory was designed as a tool for assessing the
factors that influence the success of a collaboration. Twenty
such factors have been identified. How does your collaboration
rate? Complete the inventory online now to find out! Access
the inventory HERE.
The Collaboration Framework was developed
by the National
Network for Collaboration in the United States. The framework
is designed to help individuals and practitioners who are
either starting collaborations, or need help in strengthening
an existing collaboration. It is a useful tool for those who
are developing or working to sustain a collaboration. Read
Partnerships between nonprofits and business
are a common and growing phenomenon, demonstrating that collaboration
is key to tackling issues such as poverty, health, and the
environment. However, research commissioned by The Forster
Company and TwentyFifty Ltd., shows that both NGOs and business
often use subjective judgment, rather than objective external
standards, as a means of determining the appropriateness of
prospective partners. For more information or to request a
free copy of the report, click HERE.
This brief article provides useful tips on
how to develop clear roles and responsibilities within collaborative
agreements. Specifically the article describes the typical
contents of memorandums of understanding and contracts for
funding. Read more HERE.
Since 1999, the Quality
of Life CHALLENGE has charted a bold new way for people throughout
BC’s Capital Region to improve quality of life for all,
particularly those disadvantaged by poverty. By carefully
nurturing a network of relationships, the CHALLENGE is helping
to build a climate in which the community has the continued
capacity to self-organize around issues that threaten its
quality of life. Read this Caledon story HERE.
This brief article presents the process of
developing a Public Research Project to study the state of
communication between the public and the civil justice system
with a purpose of finding ways to increase public involvement
in the system. The work was completed by the Legal Studies
Program (LSP) of the Faculty of Extension at the University
of Alberta. The work highlights the role that collaboration
plays in university education and how partnerships can be
used to develop a national civic justice network. Read more
Want an overview of how and why people from
different sectors should work together? Look over this summary
document of real multisectoral collaborations in the United
States and explore the kind of results they are producing.
Access the document HERE.
Inclusive Cities Canada: A Cross-Canada
Civic Initiative is a unique partnership of community leaders
and elected municipal politicians working collaboratively
to enhance social inclusion across Canada. The goals of Inclusive
Cities Canada (ICC) are to strengthen the capacity of cities
to create and sustain inclusive communities for the mutual
benefit of all people, and to ensure that community voices
of diversity are recognized as core Canadian ones. Learn more
The document summarizes the comments of three
presentations on how to make collaborations work. The presentations
were given during a Diversity Network Project in San Francisco
in 2003. The comments are as relevant today as the day they
were presented. The three panelists provide practical and
concise advice on what they feel are the things that you should
know and consider in collaborations.
Read more HERE.
This workbook was developed by The Drucker
Foundation (now the Leader
to Leader Institute) to help community based organizations
develop partnerships with business. The workbook takes participants
through a detailed four phase process including numerous useful
worksheets. Access the workbook HERE.
This paper from the Caledon Institute describes
four major categories of partnerships: public education, social
marketing, community investment and social change. Positive
aspects of partnerships include the ability to increase investment
in a given problem by harnessing previously untapped resources
in new and creative ways. Major concerns about partnerships
focus on public sector divestiture, power imbalances and ethical
issues. Uncertainties arise in relation to accountability,
up-front investment and unexpected events. Read more HERE.
“The problems facing our cities seem
to defy solution,” writes James Austin, in this article
from the Leader to Leader Institute. “The only certainty
is that these increasingly complex challenges exceed the capabilities
of any single sector -- public, private, or nonprofit -- to
solve them alone.” Read the article HERE.
Strengthening Community Education: Building
Partnerships Workbook focuses on community collaboration with
a particular emphasis on the importance of collaboration for
small and rural schools. Read more HERE.
This presentation by Jim Capraro, Executive
Director of Greater Southwest Development Corporation in Chicago,
reveals how to use the power of partnerships to do everything
from big projects to creating big change. Read more HERE.
Foundations think they're doing the right
thing by requiring grantees to form partnerships with each
other. There are, however, two sides to every story, and grantees
share their stories of frustration HERE.
Joan Roberts explains the ins and outs of
implementing a trans-organizational system and how it can
be used as an effective vehicle to create and disseminate
a new vision and direction for communities or sectors. Read
Urban Development Agreements involve a partnership
between the federal, provincial and municipal governments
to work in collaboration when addressing broad urban development
issues. Whether it is inner city revitalization, strengthened
innovation, or sustainable economic development, each urban
development agreement is tailored to address the needs of
the city it involves. These agreements are resourceful, flexible
instruments that coordinate action among the levels of government
and result in the seamless delivery of programs and services.
Perhaps the most well-known is the Vancouver
Agreement. Learn more about Urban Development Agreements
website provides a concise, snappy introduction to what collaboration
is and how it helps. Pete Peterson, a collaboration specialist
working in Idaho, answers basic questions, such as “why
collaborate?” and “what
does collaboration look like?” and offers
links to additional resources. Check out the website
details the ways businesses, government, and nonprofits have
collaborated to form partnerships that address problems too
complex for one sector to handle on its own. The report integrates
what has been learned in the Three-Sector
Initiative, a collaborative effort among seven
organizations in the government, business, and nonprofit sectors.
Download the report HERE.
Back to top.
Access more resources & links
on multisectoral collaboration here!