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Introduction to Partnerships

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Hello, I’m Masa Jimba, a professor in the University of Tokyo. I’m teaching health promotion and global health in Japan and other Asian countries. I’m also a member of Collaborating Centre for Health Promotion, CCHP. The topic for today’s health promotion  core competency is Partnership Building.
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This is the outline of my lecture for today. The first part is the introduction of partnership and health promotion. The second part  is the process of partnership building. Then finally, I’ll focus on the public private  partnership and social marketing. So let’s start with the introduction of partnership. Partnership can be defined as a collaborative relationship between two or more partners. It is based on trust equality and mutual understanding to achieve a specified goal. And as you can see it, goal setting or goal sharing, a key is to maintain good partnership. When we analyze partnership, we sometimes divide it into three types. The first one is micro-level, such as husband and wife or family level. The last one, third one, is macro-level, country or global level.
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In between, is the second type, called a meso-level, there is in a community, village, or town. Partnership is not new for health promotion, or many health programs. Different terminologies have been used to mean similar with partnership. For health promotion, the last one, intersectoral collaboration has been used for many years. As partnership is a key to work together to improve  health, many related initiatives have been taken. The list in this slide is just examples, among them, public private partnership or sometimes we call it PPP, is particularly important these days  and I’ll take it up later in my presentation. These days we often heard a phrase  such and such ‘determinants of health’.  The most popular one is social determinants of health.
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Currently, we hear other determinants of health such as political determinants of health, ecological determinants of health, and others. It suggests that health is determined  by many many factors. That’s why partnership is important. Partnership is important  for many health programs, but we sometimes face many barriers. And we have to overcome these barriers. Most of them are about money, power, culture, and human relations. And once these problems happen, it is not easy to go ahead with partners. In order to overcome these barriers, we need to be very clear about what is the goal of this partnership. So goal sharing again is really really important to overcome these barriers. And once it goes well, or once partner goes well we can obtain benefits.
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Achieving the goal might be the most important benefit, however, in the process of implementing a partnership program, we can learn each other and we can grow ourselves. Last year, I had a chance to talk with a successful Japanese businessman in an airplane from Nepalto Bangkok. And he’s a retired person and has been traveling around the world. He’s reaching partnership experience for his business, and according to him, for big joint projects with partners, which may cost million dollars, conflicts definitely happen. “It is inevitable, it is necessarily evil.” that’s what he said. And only after overcoming the conflicts, you can achieve the goal, in order to get the benefits. So we must face the conflicts when we have partnership program and we have to overcome them.

Dr. Masamine Jimba will introduce you to the definition of partnership, types of partnership, and different terminologies for partnership. He will also explain the barriers and benefits of partnerships.

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