On June 9, P4G’s “family” of partnerships, partner countries, and partner organizations gathered to discuss highlights from the 2021 P4G Seoul Summit and how to leverage high-impact partnerships to drive bold climate action. P4G Global Director Ian de Cruz kicked off the session by sharing the key messages from the Summit, where P4G solidified its role as the global delivery mechanism for inclusive partnerships in developing countries. “What we co-create in 2021 and 2022 will define P4G’s trajectory,” de Cruz said.
P4G’s Director of Partnerships, Robyn McGuckin, followed by reflecting on the lessons learned from the most successful P4G Partnerships and how those learnings have shaped P4G’s partnership selection process for 2021 and beyond. McGuckin remarked how partnerships must be driven by entrepreneurs on the ground and align with country priorities in order to gain the most value from P4G’s dynamic network. The selection process will focus on developing depth and strength of mutually reinforcing partnerships within P4G’s five focus SDGs to accelerate the growth and scale of commercially viable models.
Moderators from the five SDG Thematic Sessions at the Summit shared the key takeaways and the opportunities coming out of each session to accelerate participating partnerships’ impact models. Kevin Moss, Global Director of the Center for Sustainable Business at World Resources Institute reflected on the Circular Economy session’s discussion, where the Sustainable Industrial Clusters/SSEZ Partnership, Circular Fashion Partnership, and 3RI Partnership highlighted how local ownership and stakeholders are at the core. This aspect, coupled with support from the P4G family and knowledge products to share learnings enhances the ability for partnerships to replicate in other regions and sectors.
Claire Kneller, Head of the International Food Programme at WRAP, shared outcomes from the Food and Agriculture session that focused on scaling solutions on food security through the Sustainable Food Partnership and sharing data through the Sustainable Sourcing at Scale partnership’s SourceUp platform. As a partner in the FLAWLESS partnership, Kneller also highlighted Rabobank’s commitment to join the initiative, solidifying the idea that food loss and waste prevention can be turned into a legitimate asset. “The true value of P4G is its driving force to bring together public and private partners. It's challenging but it’s what’s required,” noted Kneller.
De Cruz outlined the Energy session takeaways, where emerging partnerships of government and industry can work together to meet net zero commitments and decarbonize hard to abate sectors, particularly in transportation. P4G demonstrated genuine market-based opportunities for learnings and catalytic investment through the Africa GreenCo, Energise Africa, and Energy Efficiency Alliance partnerships, which shared their models at the Summit.
Reflecting on the Cities session, Leila Yim Surratt, P4G’s Director of Strategy and Engagement emphasized how leapfrogging to sustainable and efficient alternatives in the transport and building sector will reduce emissions for cities under the framework of net zero. This represents an opportunity to create jobs and spark green development aligned to country priorities, a key element in P4G’s 2021 partnership process.
McGuckin closed out the SDG session takeaways by sharing the innovation needed for investing in tangible solutions for water and sanitation access. With P4G’s digitization theme, partnerships like iW+ and Finance for WASH access are pioneering successful models in the water sector where investment is so hard to come by.
With the focus on preparing partnerships for commercial investment, P4G’s Director of Investments Sarbinder Singh emphasized that to change the situation on the ground and deliver on the sustainable development goals, partnerships must reach financial sustainability. Singh described how P4G will bring investors because they are not looking for individual partnerships but looking to find scale for their investments, in multiple countries to diversify their portfolio aligned with P4G’s thematic areas.
De Cruz and McGuckin closed the session by sharing how P4G will leverage momentum from the Summit to co-create the most transformative partnerships that really deliver solutions. P4G encourages partnerships to apply for the 2021 call for applications for P4G funding and acceleration for on the ground enterprise growth driven by an entrepreneur. The partnership must be working on a solution that’s on a pathway to commercialization within the next two years. The Summit demonstrated that P4G can be that bridge between development and investment, but we need partnerships with solutions that attract private capital and create their own momentum to deliver enduring impact.