Partnership problems: analysis and re-design

Ellis, Elaine; Fortune, Joyce and Peters, Geoff (2007). Partnership problems: analysis and re-design. Crime Prevention and Community Safety, 9(1) pp. 34–51.



Multi-agency partnership working is becoming increasingly prevalent, particularly within and between the public and voluntary sectors. However, it is widely accepted that while this method of working brings the prospect of benefits, it also has the potential to be problematic. This paper looks at the difficulties experienced by one particular partnership and describes how the partnership used insight into the effectiveness of its structures and processes, to make changes to its design. The approach used to provide this insight was an application of the Systems Failures Method. This method is explained briefly in the paper and a summary of its application in this context is also given. Links are drawn with research work on partnerships in other contexts, and proposals are made about how the Systems Failures Method could be used at different stages of a partnership's life in order to evaluate its design and monitor and improve its methods of working and its effectiveness.

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