Back to RAI Home page
  Multi-stakeholder Negotiation
What is a multi-stakeholder negotiation?
When differences arise between more than two parties, or when decisions have to be made, complexity in sorting out the differences between all these parties can become a barrier to agreement. The solution is careful strategizing, planning and organization. A multi-stakeholder negotiation is a structured process that builds sustainable agreements between implicated parties by maximizing consensus-building, by drawing upon each party's resources and skills for creative problem-solving, and by building in monitering of implementation.

How does it work?
A neutral is called in to assess the entire situation, and to design a flexible process in collaboration with parties, possibly through a design team composed of representatives. The process is voluntary, purpose-driven, inclusive, provides equal opportunity for all parties and respect for diverse interests. It also ensures accountability, realistic deadlines, and commitments to implementation.

Depending on who will be implicated, the goals of the stakeholders, and the scope of the mandate, the design team can structure a process in any form from an open Town Hall Meeting (for the exchange of information) to a Regulation Negotiation (for drafting and implementing new laws).

Who could benefit from multi-stakeholder negotiations?
Multi-stakeholder negotiations have received particular attention in environmental disputes and land use planning, however it is equally applicable to strategic alliances between corporations, government departments, and amalgamating hospitals. Wherever the interests and needs of different groups are divergent or unclear, a structured process can be crucial to achieving mutual agreement.