The animation below presents the range of ways that independent organizations can come together in pursuit of a shared goal. Click here to download a static version of the Collaborative Map and read more about the examples presented.

Collaboration. There are many ways to collaborate, and collaborations aren’t mutually exclusive. Organizations can and do collaborate with multiple organizations, often from multiple sectors, on a range of initiatives. You don’t need a formal agreement to collaborate, or a long-term commitment, although you might choose to make your participation official in some way.

Alliance. An alliance is a more formal, structured partnership. Alliances fall into two categories: those that involve doing some part of your nuts-and-bolts business together (such as programming, administration, or revenue generation), and those that are really more about working together to have an impact on the field, for example through advancement of a social change agenda or work to strengthen organizations with a particular issue or geographic focus. In either case decision-making power is shared or transferred, but the organizations involved are not called upon to make changes to their corporate structure.

Strategic Restructuring. The most integrative form of partnership, strategic restructuring involves changes to corporate control and/or structure, and can include the creation or dissolution or one or more organizations.