Multi-Sectoral Coordination and Collaboration for Improved Nutrition: Lessons Learned From Three Feed the Future Countries
For the past three years, USAID’s global multi-sectoral nutrition project, SPRING, has worked with countries around the world to fill the evidence gap on how to achieve greater coordination and collaboration across sectors to address malnutrition. Through our work with Feed the Future-supported USAID Missions in Guatemala, Rwanda and Bangladesh, we have identified structures, processes and practices that facilitate successful collaboration. Here are six opportunities to improve collaboration at three key stages: design, implementation and monitoring.
1. Prioritize collaboration to address nutrition. Leaders have an important role in elevating collaboration and making it the main path to better nutrition, not just a single facet.
2. Develop a practical strategy. An inclusive, understandable, measurable and responsive strategy up front sets expectations and encourages partners to stay involved over the long haul.
3. Communicate the strategy’s goals and expectations at all levels. Communication among sectors at all levels, from the rank and file to decision makers within the government, ensures everyone knows where they fit in the broader strategy and can foster greater commitment.
4. Hold all stakeholders accountable for achieving the strategy. Effective collaboration requires that partners have some autonomy, but their contributions to shared goals must remain central to their work.
5. Share learning and adjust during implementation. Jointly analyzing data encourages further information sharing between partners and provides a space for diverse perspectives and innovative solutions.
6. Report on collaboration efforts. Reporting on collaboration helps participants implement different activities in a nutrition program, know if activities are on track, and determine if implementation approaches need to be revised.
Learn more about the six opportunities and how they can be applied to your work in SPRING’s Operationalizing Multi-Sectoral Collaboration and Coordination Brief.