Changing our ways: making sense of complex multi-stakeholder systems change by using the four quadrant model


  • Hettie Walters


ICCO Alliance, organisational change, international development, case studies, multi-stakeholder processes


This case study systematises the experiences of the ICCO Alliance in introducing a multi-stakeholder approach in all of its relations with partner organisations and in its development cooperation practice. Using Ken Wilber?s framework of institutional change, the author presents the internal as well as external influences that need to take place at the organisational level, the level of individual staff in these organisation as well as between organisations in the ICCO Alliance for the ICCO Alliance to be able to change. The change involves processes in which the ICCO Alliance changes from an organisation that works only through bilateral cooperation with partners to an organisation that seeks to work in multi-stakeholder arrangements with partners, that tries to do so herself in the ICCO Alliance and intends to promote this inter-organisational cooperative form for other organisations that are addressing the same issues in their work. The dynamics between the changes required at personal, relational, organisational culture and organisational systems levels are analysed in order to discover if, how and to what effect these dynamics have positive effects on the intended change, or are constraints or obstacles in really implementing the change towards working with a multi-stakeholder approach. Insights gained will help in identifying solutions for identified constraints, and also in identifying practices that have a positive effect that can be shared more widely with others. The author thinks that the experiences of the ICCO Alliance are worthwhile for others who intend to walk the pathway of change through promoting multi-stakeholder processes in the context of a much regulated development sector and strong practices that are not always conducive to good cooperative processes and creating shared added value.