The Collaborative Map: Making Sense of Nonprofit Partnerships


Since La Piana Consulting first began helping nonprofits form strategic partnerships more than 15 years ago, we’ve seen mergers go mainstream and followed the emergence and evolution of a broad range of other collaborative options. Increasingly, the social sector is embracing collaborative strategies as a powerful way to accelerate impact, and every day, organizations are exploring new ways of working together to expand their reach, deliver more effective programs, and advance their missions.

That’s why we’re so excited to share the Collaborative Map, a framework showing 15 ways nonprofits partner with other organizations to achieve shared goals. Watch a video introduction to the Collaborative Map, or just explore the Map online. In addition to learning about the various forms of partnership, you can view case examples of how each has been used by nonprofits to create impact.

The Collaborative Map illustrates the diversity and fluidity of mission-driven collaboration, reflecting the many ways nonprofits can, and do, work with other nonprofits, for-profit firms, unincorporated groups, and government entities to advance common goals. We also know that these are not mutually exclusive, and that many organizations engage in several different collaborative partnerships at once, each meeting a different set of needs.

In reviewing the Collaborative Map, how many of these different forms of partnership do you recognize as strategies your nonprofit is already using? Are you inspired to learn more about different kinds of partnerships, or do you have unanswered questions? Share your feedback in the comments below. 

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