Home / Themes / KIT – Royal Tropical Institute

Partnerships for Food Security

To contribute to food and nutrition security, a multitude of partnerships has emerged worldwide, involving government agencies, knowledge institutes, companies and non-governmental organizations. These partnerships are considered as better positioned to address market failures, governance failures and good intentions’ failures resulting from respective single-actor activities. With this theme on Partnerships, the aim of the F&BKP is to understand the potential effect(s) of partnerships on food and nutrition security and to share knowledge for an effective and efficient design of partnerships. 

Read more

Nowadays, much of the funding for food security projects and programmes is passing through partnerships between different organizations. There are several types of partnerships, each with their own type of cross-sector collaboration: public-non-profit, public-private, private-non-profit, tripartite, and multi-stakeholder partnerships. Within these categories, again, one may find a wide variety of types of partnerships.

A widely-shared expectation is that such partnerships are among the most effective mechanisms to foster development, including in the particular area of food and nutrition security. For example, through partnership constructions the aim is to more effectively address the participation of new actors like emergent small farmers, resource sharing and learning at systemic levels.

The assumption is that partnerships would improve food and nutrition security and the inclusiveness of food markets. However, the real impact on food security and food markets is still not clear. Most research is based on the management level of partnerships. Therefore the F&BKP will focus on knowledge development and sharing and deepening the knowledge in the following areas:

  • Generating impact on food and nutrition through partnerships. What socioeconomic and environmental impacts can such partnerships achieve? How can partnerships improve their impact and do more than just deliver outcomes? In this perspective, scaling-up and scaling-out are key.
  • Creating social impact by combining bottom-up and top-down approaches. This will, include a focus on inclusive partnerships and collaboration with local actors. Most partnerships are quite top-down – there is funding available and established organizations, businesses and institutes are forming partnerships to meet the goals of the proposal guidelines. However, local actors are often marginally involved. What is the best way to improve social impact by combining both approaches?
  • Effective partnership management. This involves creating mutual understanding, mutual respect, and focusing on joint problem-solving and partner relationship management. It is very practical and tries to bridge the different cultures within the partnership. There are already lots of lessons learned here which need to be incorporated in the knowledge agenda on cross-sector partnerships. These can also be used to establish a more bottom-up and participatory management structure within partnerships.

The F&BKP will give international networks and organizations the tools to share and discuss new insights, approaches and lessons learned and best practices. These will be in the form of online debates, papers and reports, and expert meetings and conferences. The Platform will reflect on the Dutch and international policies, for example by debating the assumptions that underline them. The synthesis of such debates will be provided in a policy paper with recommendations to improve Dutch policy.

The Platform is also the place where partnership initiatives and programmes will organize a learning process and deepen knowledge development. The sharing of experiences and comparing them with others is important to improve current partnership initiatives. The F&BKP, for example, will work with the Dutch Partnership Facility of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Sustainable Development and Food Security (FDOV). Forty partnerships have recently agreed and the Platform will work together with all of them to define knowledge gaps and demands for improvement.

The aim is to furthermore identify innovative partnership models. Best practices on inclusive partnership models and impact measurement will, for instance, be showcased on the website. And finally, the F&BKP supports networks to define their own knowledge agenda and to feed future research calls.

Recent Partnerships articles
Explorations 03: A portfolio scan of the Facility for Sustainable Entrepreneurship and Food Security
April 14, 2016Study
Explorations 03: A portfolio scan of the Facility for Sustainable Entrepreneurship and Food Security
By: F&BKP Office Theme: Partnerships

In March 2016, PPPLab published a new working document “Explorations 03” which presents an initial analysis of the portfolio of projects approved under the first call of the Facility for Sustainable Entrepreneurship and Food Security (FDOV). It seeks to get to grips with the basic “change logic” of these projects from a PPP perspective. »

How to Design and Facilitate Multi-Stakeholder Partnerships
October 9, 2015Study
How to Design and Facilitate Multi-Stakeholder Partnerships
By: F&BKP Office Theme: Partnerships

“Multi-stakeholder partnerships (MSPs) are about changing something with others”, said Herman Brouwer, during the launch of a new book, “The MSP Guide: How to Design and Facilitate Multi-Stakeholder Partnerships” by the Centre of Development Innovation (CDI) of Wageningen University & Research centre on October 6, 2015. “When building a multi-stakeholder partnership, it is important to »

October 8, 2015Study
Brochure “Capitalizing on Knowledge in International Public-Private Partnerships”
By: F&BKP Office Theme: Partnerships

Seed money is a meaningful knowledge instrument for the Ministry of Economic Affairs, as well as for the Top Sector Agri&Food to foster international public-private partnerships (PPPs) and the valorization of agricultural knowledge. During a lively meeting the findings of two studies, including 10 cases in Africa, Asia and South America, were presented by researchers from »

Building partnerships with whom?
May 19, 2015Study
Building partnerships with whom?
By: multiple authors Theme: Partnerships

Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) in agriculture, food security and nutrition are on the rise. OECD countries and African governments invest more and more funds through PPPs to modernize the agricultural sector and food value chains in Africa. A new paper by the Food & Business Knowledge Platform presents a brief and non-exhaustive overview (a ‘quick scan’) »

IOB Study
April 3, 2014Study
IOB Study
By: IOB Theme: Partnerships

Public-private partnerships (PPP’s) are a relatively recent phenomenon in international development cooperation. Current policy documents frequently refer to expectations regarding their potential contributions to global development goals. The growing international attention was firmly backed by the Netherlands government. However, there are still few diagnostic tools available to determine when and how PPP’s represent a preferred »

PPPs: listen to the farmers
March 25, 2014Expert opinion
PPPs: listen to the farmers
By: Karlijn Muiderman Theme: Partnerships

Assuming a joint approach would unleash agricultural potential and strengthen the market, Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) have dominated global food security strategies. The debate highlights several strategies, for example, focusing on the local effects of knowledge-sharing through PPP networks, advocating linkages between sectors, or optimizing trade in a corridor approach. Within these approaches there is »

Different types of partnerships
March 18, 2014Study
Different types of partnerships
By: Evert-jan Quak Theme: Partnerships

The term ‘Partnership’ is used to describe a wide variety of relationships and collaboration contracts. As such, the term may be confusing. Therefore, more specific information on the type of partnership in question and the particular context is required. The following basic characteristics help to classify a partnership: Level of intervention: is it international, regional, »