Experiences and challenges of Collaboration between Civil Society Organizations and the United Nations

Detta är en Master-uppsats från Göteborgs universitet/Institutionen för socialt arbete

Sammanfattning: Interorganizational collaboration is defined by Phillips, Lawrence and Hardy (2000) as “a co-operative relationship among organizations that relies on neither market nor hierarchical mechanisms of control” (pp. 24). They state that collaboration helps organizations get skills as well as resources that are impossible to acquire from within the organization. Their definition adds that collaboration enhances combining resources by transferring assets and sharing key tools such as knowledge or personnel and coming up with solutions to social problems and also build capacities in order to enhance organization’s ability to express social problems better. Moreover, collaboration can help organizations creating new knowledge through ongoing social interactions in the collaborations and additionally influence the structure of interorganizational relationships and at the same time influence other organizations (Hardy, Phillips and Lawrence 2003). There was an increasing development in collaboration between intergovernmental organizations, such as the United Nations, and CSOs during the twentieth century (Alger 2002), and according to the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland (2017), CSOs are now considered to be significant and important at the national and international levels by taking part in the political, economic and cultural domain. The focus of this research is on the experience of collaboration between the United Nations and Civil Society Organizations and its challenges, and the research is carried out by using mixed methods. The research was carried out by distributing a survey to CSOs and UN organizations and collecting experiences of collaboration between both entities. The survey was sent out to 1035 potential respondents, out of which 43 participated. The theoretical framework consists of theories such as Civil Society Participation, Framework of Successful Interorganizational Collaboration and Power. The research questions answered were; What is the experience of the collaboration between CSOs and the UN? How has the inclusion of CSOs in the UN decision-making process been carried out in practice? Are there challenges in the collaboration? Through this research it has been demonstrated that collaboration between CSOs and the UN is of highly importance in order to meet the needs of human rights and social justice, but it has its challenges and needs to work on strengthening the dynamics between the two entities as well as balancing the power dynamics and create more inclusion, which is a responsibility of the UN.

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