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Report: Funding and Commissioning in Complexity

Collaborate and Newcastle University Business School have published research into funding and commissioning in complexity:

Annabel Davidson-Knight, Head of Practice at Collaborate, said: “Complex problems require collaborative solutions and increasing numbers of funders — across the public and voluntary spheres — are experimenting with new ways of sharing power. Many are stepping into the role of broker, convening stakeholders across the complex environments in which they operate, seeing the maintenance of ‘system health’ as a crucial part of their role.

“They invest both time and money into network infrastructure to do this. This is fundamentally challenging for certain institutional processes — and behaviours — nonetheless, many work in spite of these barriers, or in some cases as we’re seeing from the research, are dismantling these barriers, reinventing processes and behaviours to be more fit for purpose.

“Our research shows that trust is key here and enables those on the frontline to respond more effectively to the complexity of the lives of the people they are trying to help. It frees them up to respond to the issues that matter for people, moving beyond old notions of accountability.

“We now want to understand more about how funders and commissioners are responding to these challenges in their practice. If you move away from KPIs and targets, how do you know you’re having an impact? Is there still a role for measurement, and what is it? We’re looking forward to exploring these and other questions with a range of stakeholders in the coming months.”

Download and read the full report here:

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