Global Partnerships and Innovation Critical to Progress

July 27, 2009
HIV Positive Patients in Indian Hospital

About the Author: Ambassador Elizabeth Frawley Bagley serves as the U.S. Department of State's Special Representative for Global Partnerships.

Developing new partnerships around the world is at the heart of the Obama Administration’s foreign policy.

That was the clear message delivered by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in her major address at the Council on Foreign Relations July 15, 2009. She called for creating a new architecture of cooperation to meet today’s global challenges and “tilting the balance away from a multi-polar world and toward a multi-partner world.”

This vision extends beyond cooperation with governments and multilateral institutions to include new partnerships with businesses, organizations, philanthropies, universities, religious groups, and Diaspora communities.

In a world of complex challenges and stretched budgets, harnessing the talent, resources, and expertise of the private sector and civil society is both an opportunity and a necessity. In the 1960s, nearly 70 percent of all money flowing from the United States to the developing world was official development assistance. Today, over 80 percent is from private sources.

As Special Representative for Global Partnerships, I am working to tap into the wealth of possibilities beyond government and forge the new partnerships around the world. Under the Secretary’s leadership, we are positioning the State Department to fill three key roles:

First, as a convener, bringing together people from across regions and sectors to work together on issues of common interest.

Second, as a catalyst, launching new projects, actively seeking new solutions, providing vital training and technical assistance to facilitate additional projects.

And third, as a collaborator, working closely with our partners to plan and implement projects – avoiding duplication, learning from each other, maximizing our impact by looking for best practices. One example of how much we can accomplish through innovative public-private partnerships is our Phones-for-Health initiative, which leverages cutting-edge information technology to improve AIDS programs in developing countries. A number of technology companies and development funds joined with the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and the State Department to launch the $10 million program, which uses mobile phones to relay medical information from areas lacking internet access or hard lines directly to health authorities’ computer systems, enabling rapid interventions such as distribution of medication and education programs for those at risk. This partnership has supported treatment for millions of people affected by HIV/AIDS and has helped prevent millions more from becoming infected.

If done right, public-private partnerships can deliver real results for people around the world and advance our national foreign policy objectives. That is our goal.

Secretary Clinton famously wrote that “it takes a village to raise a child.” We must apply that same ethic of shared responsibility and common purpose to meeting today’s global challenges. No one nation can meet these challenges alone. Only by developing new approaches and new partnerships can we achieve the progress we need.

Comments

Comments

free g.
|
Israel
July 28, 2009

F.G. in Israel writes:

New partnerships around the world are more then welcome, i happy to see that the new government doing some essential steps to heal the world.

Minega
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New York, USA
July 28, 2009

Minega in New York writes:

That is great. Can the partnership goes far between those organizations? How can it be done? Thanks.

Minega

Normita
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California, USA
July 28, 2009

Normita in California writes:

Secretary Clinton, thank you for leading the way for global partnerships. You are simply the best. God bless you in your journey from villages to villages around the globe.

Ron
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New York, USA
July 28, 2009

Ron in New York writes:

The best model for Global Partnerships can be seen in the UN ECOSOC/DPI and UN Global Compact.

In these systems; the values held in the UN Charter are emulated and implemented worldwide. The Obama/Clinton State Department could be a force to synergize this model.

Eric
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New Mexico, USA
July 29, 2009

Eric in New Mexico writes:

Dear Ambassador Bagley,

I don't know if a venue has been picked for next spring's nuclear security conference or not, but I had a thought on how to integrate it in both historical terms and academic partnership.

We have a saying in New Mexico, "We started it here, we can end it here."

In reference of course to the fact that the atomic bomb was designed, built and tested here long ago.

I could think of no better place to hold such a conference than at LANL, which is university run.

Best,

EJ

Eileen
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California, USA
July 29, 2009

Eileen in California writes:

I hope all of your goals come true. I ask that you include in the Global Partners Initiative a renewed relationship with the Pacific Island Nations in particular those nations that do not benefit from being a U.S. territory like the Solomon Islands. There are many medical and economic issues that cannot be left to Australia alone to handle in the Solomon Islands one of the worst off of these southern pacific nations. Our country should partner with Australia in this region. We should also separate Oceana from the Asia Pacific region. The economic, developmental and social issues in Oceana are very different than in China, Japan, India, and Korea. By lumping these very disparate countries together in one geo-political region we do the small nations of Oceana a disservice.

Ron
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New York, USA
July 30, 2009

Ron in New York writes:

More on Global Partnerships:

The USG and Internatonal private-public donors have so much on resources; but become useless when they allow backward poitical ideologies get in the way of effective action. Global AIDS has been a glaring
example of resorce-riches and ideologic poverty.

.

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