NGO and company partnerships for inclusive business

Dr. Aline Menden, Nelleke van der Vleuten, Christian Pirzer, Isabel von Blomberg
Resource type:
Case studies and tools

Endeva created this comprehensive guide to inform NGOs and businesses of the opportunity within Inclusive Business (IB) models to create sustainable change for marginalised populations. IB models offer a shift from business as usual in terms of philanthropic engagement. Instead of an NGO simply receiving money from a company for a project, IB involves a business and an NGO partnering as a team to sustainably facilitate a market approach to development. A business with a particular set of skills would partner with an NGO who's needs match the businesses offerings. In this method of combatting the development challenges of today, the change is both sustainable and mutually beneficial to the NGO and the contributing private business. This guide encourages NGOs and businesses to strive for inclusive business models to work towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). 

This guide -- which was developed through peer-to-peer dialogue, desk research, and interviews with representatives from business, NGO and academia -- covers topics including: 

  • When to choose inclusive business partnerships
  • Finding the right partner
  • Creating opportunity and managing risks
  • Changing internally
  • Moving on or scaling up
  • What NGOs can offer businesses
  • What businesses can offer NGOs
  • How international NGOs can effectively partner with local NGOs
  • Financing IBs

It also provides case studies and cross-case analysis, including cases explicitly aimed at improving nutrition (e.g. multi-country programme led by World Vision International, Sight and Life and Royal DSM; dairy projects led by Arla Food Ingredients, the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition, DanChurchAid, the Confederation of Danish Industry, and other partners). Each case study covers:

  • Objectives of the partnership
  • Business and social impact case
  • Partners involved and their motivation
  • How partners work together
  • The way forward
  • Lessons learned

Overall this is a really useful resource for businesses and NGOs looking for sustainable approaches social impact through partnerships. 

This resource presents evidence or data but has not been peer reviewed