Born out of the need to make the Global Partnership Board truly inclusive and effective, the 61 developing country partners (DCP), which are grouped into 6 constituencies on the GPE Board, have been meeting ahead of the Board’s semi-annual meetings since December 2014.
The constituency meetings strengthen partner countries’ role in the governance of the partnership by fostering their engagement in decision-making, strategy, policy and advocacy processes, so that decisions made at the global level make a positive impact at the country level. The meetings also promote the sharing of good practices in addressing common, yet different, challenges.
Participants have noted that the DCP meetings help promote inclusive dialogue within the partnership by influencing the discussions at the Board and empowering DCP Board members to speak with the weight of their constituency behind them – legitimizing their interventions.
They also say that the meetings improve communications with the rest of the partnership; that they promote peer-to-peer learning, South-South knowledge exchange, experience sharing and understanding of country-level education sector reform and GPE processes; that they bond DCP constituency members together, fostering mutual accountability, respect and trust; and that they create a platform for collaborative development that brings GPE partners together.
The meetings have been a key driver of change for the DCP’s role within the partnership, which the Independent Interim Evaluation of the Global Partnership also acknowledged.
Having proved their usefulness, the DCP constituency meetings have been institutionalized as core work of the Secretariat, and will now take place before each Board meeting.