Effective collaboration between business and civil society is indispensable when addressing social problems globally. The Making More Health (MMH) partnership between Boehringer Ingelheim and the global NGO Ashoka, is an instance of such collaboration in the field of global health. Aiming to achieve better access and quality of healthcare for humans and animals alike, the partnership has expanded over the past 10 years in many directions. At the core of the partnership is connecting innovative and entrepreneurial solutions for healthcare provision with business expertise in communities around the world.
This convergence of innovation, business, social entrepreneurship and changemaking has resulted in a diverse and dynamic network of health influencers, including thousands of Boehringer Ingelheim employees engaged in health-related initiatives and more than 100 leading social entrepreneurs who collectively reach more than 9.3 million direct beneficiaries around the globe. Together, this network is addressing the most complex health challenges.
Our goal for a potential session at the SOCAP21 is to share with a wider audience the main learnings that emerge from 10 years of collaboration between Ashoka and Boehringer Ingelheim. Such long-term cross-sectorial collaborations are rare, and they provide the opportunity to distill insights and recommendations for similar efforts between companies and civil society organizations. So, we would like to share 10 main principles for effective collaboration that the Making More Health partnership illustrates:
- Start from core value alignment and commitment.
- Foster flexibility to maintain creativity.
- The best team is the right team.
- Gather strength from local communities and partners.
- Invest time and energy in aligning working styles.
- Think of the effects of the partnership on both partners equally.
- Create channels for follow-up and long-term engagement.
- Increase the impact of the partnership by seeking new partners.
- Communicate the partnership internally and connect it to relevant priorities.
- Develop a representative impact measurement framework.
We invite social entrepreneurs and members of the corporate field to explore the journey of Making More Health over the past decade and to also reflect on how they could adapt these 10 principles to their own work and partnerships.