The concept of multi-stakeholder partnerships (MSPs) is promoted as one of the key tools for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). SDG 17 emphasizes the critical importance of partnerships for sustainable development, based on the assumption that partnerships will mobilize a wide range of stakeholders in the sharing of knowledge, expertise, technology, and additional resources towards achieving the global development agenda. However, studies have shown that global multi-stakeholder partnerships are challenged by unbalanced participation, particularly the limited participation of stakeholders from sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). This lack of inclusiveness and participation often leads to incoherence in agenda-setting, contested decision-making processes, and suboptimal outcomes of partnerships. Yet, developing strong partnerships for the SDGs requires increased participation, inclusiveness, and diversity that enhances the role and influence of partnerships towards achieving the SDGs. Consequently, research needs to urgently explore how multi-stakeholder partnerships can achieve increased participation and inclusiveness by mobilizing underrepresented stakeholders. Against this challenge, this chapter analyzes inclusiveness and representation in MSPs related to stakeholders from the SSA region. Using Nigeria as a case study, we explore the participation of Nigerian stakeholders in MSPs, focusing on obstacles for increased participation and inclusiveness. The chapter is organized as follows: first, we review the Partnerships for SDGs online platform (hosted by the United Nations), focusing on multi-stakeholder partnerships’ self-reported implementation in Nigeria. Second, using survey data on SSA partnerships, we analyze the factors hindering participation in partnerships. Finally, this chapter discusses the impacts of limited participation and inclusiveness on partnerships concerning agenda-setting, decision-making process, and outcomes. The chapter concludes that an improved understanding of participation in multi-stakeholder partnerships will offer an opportunity for reflection, in the SSA context, required for building strong and effective partnerships for the SDGs.
|Title of host publication||Transitioning to Strong Partnerships for the Sustainable Development Goals|
|Editors||Georg von Schnurbein|
|Place of Publication||Basel, Switzerland|
|Publication status||Published - Dec 2020|
|Name||Transitioning to Sustainability|