In recent years the debates around shifting power, localisation and decolonisation within the development and humanitarian sectors have gained prominence, resulting in an increasing number of actors seeking to foster a paradigm shift with the ultimate aim to rebalance the unequal partnerships that have characterised such sectors to date. The concerted efforts to discover new ways of working that transfer decision-making power from ICSOs to those affected by the work, have led to transformation processes towards sustainable solutions to address the power and resource imbalances between donors, ICSOs and local communities.
The International Civil Society Centre wants to contribute to the current energy on shifting the paradigm and support ICSOs and their partners in the ambitious yet exciting journey towards power shift. To this end, in 2022 the Centre scaled the existing thematic work around Power Shift and governance reform, as it has now become part of the Centre’s strategic cycle for 2022 –2024. The initial Power Shift Lab series has been expanded into the Accelerating Inclusive Power Shift project, which seeks to accelerate power shift and raise the ambitions of ICSOs as they begin to reimagine its future position in the global civil society sector.
With its interventions under the project, the Centre contributes to the ambition of having a global humanitarian, development, human rights, and social justice system that is equitable, inclusive and locally led.
The three pillars of the Centre’s power shift work are:
1) Just Governance and Equitable Partnerships: offering concrete support to
international civil society organisations (ICSOs) in organisational reforms and mechanisms;
2) Influencing the System: enabling dialogue and exchange across the system and supporting advocacy towards change enablers;
3) Innovation and Future Frontiers: exploring innovative approaches, and futures-fit roles for (I)CSOs, looking beyond the North-South binary.
The project is supported by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA) and the Bosch Foundation.
For further information on the project, please contact Myriam Ciza Gambini, Project Manager – Accelerating Inclusive Power Shift.