The 5 capabilities handout cards

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Handout during ICT4D Learning workshop

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The 5 capabilities handout cards

  1. 1. The 5 Capabilities The 5 capabilities:Capacity building is an integral part of development and something eachdevelopment partner in the C4C consortium has experience with. It is also a processthat is continuous, non-linear and influenced by the organisation that it takes place inand the world surrounding it. ECDPM (the European Centre for Development PolicyManagement) has developed 5 core capabilities that, in interaction with each other,lead to organisational capacity.The C4C consortium uses these same capabilities as an underlying framework forcapacity building in our Social Innovation Process. The capabilities are used to helpanalyse what capabilities we can build on and which capabilities are present foreffectively formulating and implementing ICT4D projects.It is important to note that capacity development (and the capability approach assuch) is useful and is to be used at the level of the partner organisations, as well asat Connect4Change level and at the level of schools, farmer organisations and healthinstitutions involved in our programmes. Capability to adapt and self-renew Capability to relate and to Capability to carry out attract resources technical, service delivery and support and logistical tasks Capacity Capability to commit and engage Capability to balance diversity and coherence
  2. 2. The capability to adapt and self-renew: Capability to adapt and self-renewCapability to relate and to Capability to carry out attract resources technical, service delivery and support and logistical tasks Capacity Capability to commit and engage Capability to balance diversity and coherence An example from ………. on the capability to adapt and self-renew:
  3. 3. The capability to adapt and self-renew: Can you adjust when things change?The capability to adapt and self renew is not only a key requisite for organisationalsurvival, it is also central to its ability to continue to be relevant, effective andefficient within a changing environment and towards changing needs.This capability is about the flexibility to adapt to changing circumstances. Combiningshort term responsiveness with the ability to focus over the long-term on thedevelopment of more complex capabilities such as slow, incremental, collectivelearning is a difficult capacity challenge. Less effective organisations fail at one orboth of these tasks, or find it difficult to sustain both processes over a long period ina context of shifting political trends and bureaucratic dynamics.The capabilities associated with adaptation and change include:• to improve individual and organisational learning;• to foster internal dialogue;• to reposition and reconfigure the organisation;• to incorporate new ideas; and• to map out a growth path.
  4. 4. The 5 Capabilities Capability to adapt and self-renew Capability to relate and to Capability to carry out attract resources technical, service delivery and support and logistical tasks Capacity Capability to commit and engage Capability to balance diversity and coherence An example from ………. on the capability to carry out technical, service delivery and logistical tasks:
  5. 5. The capability to carry out technical, service delivery and logistical tasks: Do you show what you can do?The capability to carry out technical service delivery and logistical tasks describes theknowledge, expertise and experience required to carry out actions and achieve theresults aimed for. This includes technical and logistical skills, but also managerialcapacity such as programme analysis, financial management, project management,and advocacy.This core capability underlies the most common way of thinking about capacityissues. The emphasis is on functional, instrumental ways of meeting a set ofobjectives and fulfilling a mandate. The core capability to perform, deliver services orachieve results is an obvious and crucial element of the capacity puzzle.This includes the following capabilities:• to deliver services;• for strategic planning and management ;• for financial management
  6. 6. The 5 Capabilities Capability to adapt and self-renew Capability to relate and to Capability to carry out attract resources technical, service delivery and support and logistical tasks Capacity Capability to commit and engage Capability to balance diversity and coherence An example from ……….on the capability to balance diversity and coherence:
  7. 7. The capability to balance diversity and coherence: Is the system stable as a whole?By ensuring availability of a broad variety of skills, perspectives and visions amongstits members and divisions an organisation develops resilience and the flexibility toreact adequately to different situations. It is a prerequisite for continuous renewaland innovation (see also the capability to self-renew!). However, diversity needs tobe balanced against coherence in order to avoid the risk of fragmentation anddisintegration.Organisations also struggle to balance their different capabilities. If they pay toomuch attention to the technical and the substantive, they begin to lose a sense ofthemselves as human community. Too much attention to the ‘soft’ capabilities, andthey begin to lose the ability to deliver technical value and services. Thus all theactors try to balance different aspects of their capacity and arrive at some sort ofcoherence.The core capability to balance diversity and coherence includes the followingcapabilities:• to communicate;• to build connections;• to manage diversity; and• to manage paradox and tension.
  8. 8. The 5 Capabilities Capability to adapt and self-renew Capability to relate and to Capability to carry out attract resources technical, service delivery and support and logistical tasks Capacity Capability to commit and engage Capability to balance diversity and coherence An example from ……….on the capability to commit and engage:
  9. 9. The capability to commit and engage: Do you (all) know where you go and do you have the drive to get there?The capability to commit and engage describes the awareness of the organisation orsystem of its place in the World and its capability to organise itself and to motivateand engage its staff and members to work energetically towards common goals. Theorganisation and its members are aware of its legitimacy, keep a clear focus andhave confidence to address challenges. They do it in time, over time and frequently,despite the opposition or resistance or noncooperation of others.This is a condition that goes beyond conventional notions of ownership. It has a lot todo with attitude and self-perception. It is connected to deeper patterns of behavioursthat are partly structural, partly psychological, and usually deeply embedded. Thecondition of ‘stuckness’ is the most obvious sign of the lack of this capability. Manyorganisations get stuck in a ‘low commitment, low capacity, low performance’equilibrium that is a classic trap of weakened systems. This capability is leastunderstood by external actors. Funders can relate to organisations that aretechnically or organisationally ‘unable’ to do certain things, and are usually puzzledand frustrated by actors that appear ‘unwilling’ to commit given the pressing needsto be addressed.ECDPM regards this core capability as the one that energises all the others. Actorsthat developed it could overcome enormous constraints. When it was absent orweakened, they produced little of value.This core capability depends on a series of what we call skills or abilities, including:• the ability to encourage mindfulness;• the ability and willingness to persevere;• the ability to aspire;• the ability to embed conviction;• the ability to take ownership; and• the ability to be determined.
  10. 10. The 5 Capabilities Capability to adapt and self-renew Capability to relate and to Capability to carry out attract resources technical, service delivery and support and logistical tasks Capacity Capability to commit and engage Capability to balance diversity and coherence An example from ……….on the capability to relate and to attract resources and support:
  11. 11. The capability to relate and to attract resources and support: When needed, are you able to mobilise assistance?An organisation or system does not stand on its own and needs to be able to initiateand maintain relationships with other organisations and individuals and need to beable to attract support and resources for its continued existence. Through building ofcoalitions and alliances one’s legitimacy and position can be consolidated andeffectiveness can be enhanced. This capability further relates to the ability of anorganisation to attract resources and finally describes its ability to influence itsenvironment through negotiation and advocacy. The capability deals with being ableto craft, manage and sustain key relationships.It also has political aspects, as organisations frequently have to compete for power,space, support and resources with a variety of other actors. If systems becomeobsessed with their own survival and vested interests, they lose the capability toinnovate and experiment, and performance is quickly sacrificed.It includes the following capabilities:• to earn credibility and legitimacy;• to buffer the organisation or system from intrusions;• to earn the trust of others, such as donors and clients; and• to combine political neutrality and assertive advocacy.

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