Civil Society Organisations
Increased legitimacy for Civil Society Organizations
Over the past few decades, the role and influence of civil society organizations (CSOs) – e.g. NGOs, trade unions, faith-based organizations, development organizations and charities - has constantly increased. It is globally accepted that economic, environmental and social sustainability is no longer the exclusive domain of state and market institutions. Civil society plays a key role in making institutions transparent, accountable and responsive.
Large-scale social change requires broad cross-sector coordination, yet the social sector remains focused on the isolated intervention of individual organizations. Funders and nonprofits alike overlook the potential for collective impact because they are used to focusing on independent action as the primary vehicle for social change.
- Stanford Social Innovation Review, 2011
If CSOs want to bring about social transformation for the poor and marginalized, they cannot shy away from constructive collaboration with private and public stakeholders. This involves dealing with conflicting interests and stepping into dialogue with multiple stakeholders.
Stakeholder Dialogues are an important tool for enhancing the impact of CSOs. The integration of different interest groups in a structured and results-oriented dialogue brings increased legitimacy to decision-making and implementation processes.
By taking an active part in Stakeholder Dialogues, CSOs can build trust and relationships with other stakeholders and decision-makers and thereby build their case for change.