New Partnerships for Sustainability (NEPSUS): Concepts, research design and methodologies

Stefano Ponte, Christine Noe, Opportuna Kweka, Baruani Mshale, Emmanuel Sulle, Dan Brockington, Elikana Kalumanga, Rasul Ahmed Minja, Adriana Budeanu, Asubisye Mwamfupe, Lasse Folke Henriksen, Mette Fog Olwig, Pilly Silvano, Faraja Namkesa, Ruth John, Robert Katikiro, Mathew Bukhi Mabele

Research output: Working paperResearch


New and more complex partnerships are emerging to address the sustainability of natural resource use in developing countries. These partnerships variously link donors, governments, community-based organizations, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), business, certification agencies and other intermediaries. High expectations and many resources have been invested in these initiatives. Yet, we still do not know whether more sophisticated organizational structures, more stakeholders involved, and more advanced participatory processes have delivered better sustainability outcomes, and if so, in what sectors and under what circumstances. To fill this knowledge gap and build capacity in this area, the NEPSUS research and capacity building project assembles a multidisciplinary team to analyze sustainability partnerships in three key natural resource sectors in Tanzania: forestry, wildlife and coastal resources. In each of these sectors, we assess whether co-management with local communities and private and civil society actors, and putatively more participatory processes in the governance of renewable resources, result in more equitable and sustainable livelihoods and environmental outcomes. We compare ‘more complex’ partnerships to relatively ‘simpler’, more traditional top-down and centralized management systems, and to instances where sustainability partnerships are not in place. This working paper tackles the main conceptual, methodological and research design issues arising in this effort.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationCopenhagen
PublisherCopenhagen Business School
ISBN (Print)87-93571-00-3
Publication statusPublished - 2017
SeriesNEPSUS Working Paper Series

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