Building with Nature can rarely be implemented by a single party. Successful projects require stakeholder engagement from the start, throughout the design, implementation, operation and maintenance process. Key aspects to consider:
- Cooperation between stakeholders and integral, multifunctional approaches
- Coalition forming, co-creation and public participatory approaches to create shared ambitions
- Stakeholder assessment and engagement
Stakeholders are key to project success. For mono-functional, traditional hydraulic infrastructure, the key stakeholder is the proponent or developer of the infrastructure service. However, Building with Nature focuses on multi-functionality and context-specificness, making that it can rarely be implemented by a single party. Active stakeholder engagement is required as Building with Nature relies on inputs of and creates outputs for multiple stakeholders and their functions within the system context. This also makes that financing and decision-making could cross institutional sectors and players. Moreover, local involvement of community and stakeholders is critical as they will benefit from the solutions once implemented , and sometimes even maintain them. Without community support and involvement, Building with Nature cannot be successful.
How to organize this critical multi-stakeholder approach? Within this enabler section practical guidance is provided. Attention is being paid to making a stakeholder analysis, which involves stakeholder identification, assessment and categorization. Also the practical side of this is being addressed: developing and starting a multi-stakeholder approach, organizing a stakeholder engagement process and setting-up meetings. Specific attention is paid to coalition building, as this type of engagement ‘co-deciding’ is particularly appropriate in Building with Nature, as often only joint action can lead to implementation. A range of frameworks, models and tools is highlighted to support a multi-stakeholder approach.