Getting commitment

Goal

Political commitment is crucial in this early phase of the adaptation planning process. The aim of this step is to ensure commitment from the relevant stakeholders in phase 1 to be able to continue with phase 2. This especially means commitment of stakeholders for the set adaptation goals (determined in goal definition).

Preconditions

In order to get commitment from the relevant stakeholders on the set goals, the goals have to be clearly defined (goal definition) and the roles of the different stakeholders should be clear (determine stakeholders).

Outcomes

The outcome of this step is an oral or written confirmation of all relevant partners to pursue the adaptation goals as discussed and agreed on.

Guidelines

In this phase the most important is to get political commitment. Commitment can be created by engaging stakeholders in the process. This is a challenging process that requires continuous efforts and a tailored approach. There is no one-size-fits-all approach. However, there are several aspects that are crucial when designing a process to get commitment of stakeholders. One of the key aspects is to create and maintain trust and relationships in the stakeholder engagement process.

Crucial in gaining commitment of stakeholders is:

  • Communication
  • Creating trust
  • Transparency & openness
  • Showing the added benefit for the stakeholders
  • Take time
  • Be patient
  • Managing expectations

General advice for active stakeholder involvement:

  • Understand why stakeholders would be interested to be involved
  • Communication can be done on the level of content, process & structure, relations and atmosphere and emotions. Communicating openly, being transparent on the process, informing stakeholders, respecting different views and interests are very important in order to gain engagement and commitment.
  • A well done stakeholder analysis should support in relationship and expectation management in the process of involving stakeholders.
  • Creating a good atmosphere for working together with stakeholders is important. Herefor rules for working together can be defined. An example or such rule is to respect each other and never interrupt when someone is speaking.

Experiences

Greater Manchester

Differing from the more general awareness and commitment activities identified under scoping 1.2, this looks more at GM’s experience of generating higher level commitment, especially political/leadership level.

This is critical as commitment at that level drives progress, supports activity and ultimately ensures the RESIN project, its outputs and value gets embedded into the work programmes of range of relevant groups.

In GM this has been progressed via it’s new Mayor, Andy Burnham, and his green city region ambition. This culminated in a green summit (a mayoral manifesto pledge) which was held in March 2018 and saw over 1000 applications to attend the Summit for a venue size of 600. Over 700 people (including speakers and facilitators) attended the Summit. Those who are unable to attend the Summit in person were able to view the Summit via live streaming on the GMCA and BBC websites. Adverts for the live streaming events appeared at selected Metro stops. The recording of the Summit can still be viewed online https://goo.gl/mZttcH.

The online survey attracted 2274 responses and nearly 20,000 individual comments. 42 `Listening Events’ were also held in advance of the Summit, engaging over 1200 individuals, with a spread across all Districts. Approximately 10 of these were organised by either the GMCA or Districts, with the remainder being organised by community and interest groups. The condensed and analysed feedback results from the Listening Events were reported back to the Green Summit.

As a result the following key highlights/ commitments were made with specific relevance to climate adaptation and increasing GM’s resilience to a changing climate:

  • Explore creation of a GM Environment Fund to support its wider Green City aims which can include targeting investment towards climate resilience outcomes delivered via natural capital/ecosystem services approaches

  • Produce a Natural Capital Investment Plan by Dec 18 which would identify those natural assets which could provide strategic benefit to local communities across Greater Manchester, including contributing to it’s climate resilience

  • Transform cycling and walking in the City Region by investing up to £50m per year for three years from 19/20 through the Transforming Cities Fund where opportunities exist to explore if this investment can also increase climate resilience

And throughout the summit, climate resilience was a more general thread and there is a commitment to ensure, that in delivering the above, we ensure this investment and the changes we need to make are also climate resilient.

Supporting tools and methods

Mutual gains approachi

The Mutual Gains Approach to negotiation (MGA) is a process model, based on hundreds of real-world cases and experimental findings, that lays out four steps for negotiating better outcomes while protecting relationships and reputation. This model allows parties to improve their chances of creating an agreement superior to existing alternatives.

Participation ladderi

A classical approach to stakeholder management and communication follows the I participation pyramid, that distinguishes four levels: (1) inform stakeholders, (2) I involve stakeholders, (3) co-create and (4) co-decide.This method is focused on attaining shared goals, that are defined in a collaboration process

Rebuild by designi

A collaborative research and design that can be used to design implementable solutions for a regions which want to increase their resilience. It is an innovative process that places local communities and civic leaders at the heart of a robust, interdisciplinary, creative process to generate implementable solutions for a more resilient region. The key added value to this approach is that it is collaborative and participative, creating ownership and cooperation from key stakeholders

Context of use analysisi

Context of use analysis is a commonly used tool in the development of products /software. It is employed in order to provide the information necessary to plan and design products that fit their future user’s needs, requirements and – as the name says – the products’ context of use.

Capacity buildingi

An evidence-based system for capacity development which has been used in many cities and municipalities in Europe, by major development agencies outside Europe and by governments to assess and enhance institutional capacity to deliver the change programmes necessary for effective responses to climate. It is used to assess and raise the level of capacity and competences of stakeholders to be capable to carry out breakthrough projects, aiming at Vision and Leadership, Preparedness to cooperate and Capabilities to contribute and execute.