sparksforchange

Learning for Sustainability site update (April 2010)

This portal site has been updated on an ongoing basis over the past few months. This newsletter provides a brief introduction to new resources that have been added. In the reading section links are provided to three useful literature reviews, covering partnerships, leadership and participation respectively.

The Learning for Sustainability site – http://learningforsustainability.net – brings together resources that help address the social and capacity building aspects of managing collective interests within complex and adapting systems. The site highlights the wide range of social skills and processes that are needed to support constructive collaboration, and indicates how these skills and processes can be interwoven to achieve more integrated and effective outcomes. This site brings links to several hundred annotated on-line resources from different sectors and geographic areas together in one easy to access site.

The featured links in this newsletter are drawn from some of the new sections added recently.  Direct links to these papers are provided through the on-line update – http://learningforsustainability.net/newsletters/apr10.php

  • “Perspectives on partnership: A literature review” – This paper by Doug Horton, Gordon Prain and Graham Thiele reports on a wide-ranging review of the literature on partnerships and other closely related forms of collaboration. It identifies and analyzes key cross-cutting themes and success factors, highlights gaps in current knowledge, and identifies high-potential areas for further study. <more>
  • “Leadership in Sustainable Urban Water Management: An Investigation of the champion phenomenon within Australian water agencies” – This report by André Taylor develops and communicates a suite of management strategies that can be used within water agencies to: create a supportive leadership process at different levels. These include: fostering effective champions at an executive level (‘executive champions’); attracting, recruiting, supervising and developing the leadership abilities of champions at a middle management level (‘project champions’); and encouraging distributed (group-based) leadership. <more>
  • “Stakeholder participation for environmental management: A literature review” – This working paper by Mark Reed points to the need to focus on participation as a process. It then identifies a number of best practice features from the literature. Finally, it argues that to overcome many of its limitations, stakeholder participation must be institutionalised, creating organisational cultures that can facilitate processes where goals are negotiated and outcomes are necessarily uncertain. The paper acknowledges that seen in this light, participatory processes may seem very risky, but there is growing evidence that if well designed, these perceived risks may be well worth taking. <more>

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