State & Civil Society Collaboration

Complex problems such as homelessness cannot be solved solely by governmental intervention, but nor can civil society shoulder the entire burden. Key, then, to the success of many local and national strategies is coordination between public, nonprofit, and private stakeholders at the local systems level. These collaborations allow for additional funding and resource streams, innovation, and wider community engagement. Successful state–civil society partnerships share the skills and assets of each sector in delivering a better service than either sector could on its own, while splitting the burden.1

Effective partnership arrangements require specification of objectives and degree of involvement by each sector; mechanisms for measuring progress toward objectives, combining effort and managing cooperation, and determination of appropriate roles and responsibilities; and capacity to fulfill those roles and responsibilities.2