Tips of the Triangle – Exploring three-way partnerships for Organisational Development, a new publication by MAVA

During its last phase of activity (2016-2022), the MAVA Foundation invested in organisational development (OD) partnerships of some of its close partners, for them to be better prepared for the end of our funding support. Some of these OD partnerships were structured in a triangular way between the partner organisation, an external consultant, and the MAVA Foundation as funder.

‘Tips of the Triangle – Exploring three-way partnerships for Organisational Development’ is a new publication by MAVA and Stone-Soup Consulting. After 6 years of implementation and with a wealth of shared experience, we have undertaken a reflection with partner organisations (Fundação Tartaruga, Turtle Foundation and Fundação Maio Biodiversidade), independent consultants (Rosa Matos, Cláudia Pedra, Mathilde Bullot) and Stone-Soup Consulting (Liliana Dias and Agustina O’Farrell) to draw the main lessons from these three-way partnerships.

Although these partnerships are long-term (usually at least 3 years) and require careful management (building trust, managing communication, respective roles, technical and financial dependence, etc.), they have definite advantages for the partner (who is supported in a balanced way by the consultant and the funder), for the consultant (who develops a deep and lasting relationship with the partner) and for the funder (who invests in the organisational development while maintaining an appropriate distance).

This publication is of particular interest to funders who support their partners organisationally (or who wish to do so). It is also very useful for civil society organisations that wish to build balanced relationships with donors through organisational development partnerships.

Download the publication here.


This publication is part of a series of MAVA learning products developed to reflect on and share the foundation’s learnings about institution processes and ways of working at foundation level, including challenges faced in carrying our conservation actions – to inspire donor strategies and best practices.

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