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Collective Action

About our Collective Action Services

Dealing with complex challenges – such as food security, climate change or violent extremism – often requires bringing together a wide variety of organizations in a structured way to achieve changes at a level that can impact a whole system. Doing this well requires motivating multiple, sometimes disparate groups under a unifying framework for action. LINC uses a variety of strategies to encourage active and equitable engagement of the right actors required to have a voice in the process, and applies systems-based approaches – such as Organizational Network Analysis and Constituent-Driven Design and Evaluation – that can enhance efforts focused on collective impact, network strengthening, and enhancing social capital. These approaches can help inform both the design and evaluation of collective action efforts through providing insights and guiding discussion on aspects such as:

  • What part of the system should we engage in to initiate change? How should we prioritize those interventions?
  • Whom should we engage? Who are the actors best positioned to positively impact the system, and who are those that impede it?
  • How are organizations currently working together to achieve shared goals? Are organizations adding value to one another’s work, and able to achieve more together than they could alone?

Collective Action in Practice

As part of USAID’s Sustainable WASH Systems Initiative, LINC works with WaterSHED to use systems-thinking to inform a collective impact approach for sustainable rural sanitation and hygiene (RuSH) improvements in Cambodia. This three-year program will combine strong local knowledge with advanced systems-analysis and facilitation capabilities. For example, LINC will collaborate with WaterSHED to use an Organizational Network Analysis to identify and engage the key RuSH sector actors, understand the degree of current and desired collaboration among them, and measure changes in collaboration over the course of this program. This analysis will be paired with other measurement techniques – such as outcome harvesting – to determine how strengthening the relationships and collaborative efforts among relevant sector actors leads to improved RuSH results. Go to project page.