Hubbing it Out: Why We’re Together in the Advocacy Hub
While our website and online presence is new, Advocacy Hub members have been working together on advocacy- and campaigning-related efforts for years. In our inaugural blog post, we’re sharing why we’ve joined together in this consulting cooperative. Here, in our own words, is why we’re in the Hub:
Jim: These are difficult times and we want campaigners to be as effective as they can in tacking the multiple challenges we face. I try to maximise the contribution I can make to that, and sharing ideas with Advocacy Hub members and others about campaigning, campaign strategy, and evaluation is a key part of that for me.
Gabrielle: When I became a consultant I joined the Advocacy Hub because in the past, as an internal evaluation manager, I had hired Hub members. I valued the way they engaged me as a collaborator and co-thinker, while also delivering fresh insights and analysis that surprised and challenged me.
Jeremy: I value being a member of the Advocacy Hub because our collective experience and complementary perspectives means that as a group we can offer tailored, multi-faceted solutions to clients, while interaction with expert peers helps me to improve and expand my own knowledge and skills.
Beverley: Although we are scattered in different places, we have established a strong community of practice, where we make time to share ideas, learning and best practice. I enjoy working with Advocacy Hub colleagues on projects as we complement each others’ strengths and experience, which can lead to better quality outcomes.
Martin C: As someone who also runs campaigns, I appreciate working with others with a focus on strategy and evaluation. I always have a voice in my head asking if I as a campaigner could deal with the recommendations I make as an advisor; and as a campaigner, another asking me what an evaluator would make of the decision I just took.
Antonella: It’s great to be able draw on and share experiences and thinking with a group of practitioners from across the globe who believe that evaluation and strategic planning processes should support, rather than hinder, social change processes. The opportunity to discuss ideas and emerging methodologies helps to sharpen my own thinking and practice.
Steve: I am interested in how change happens and unpacking the complexity of that via the perspectives of colleagues across different contexts brings a certain richness.
Elena: I like working with colleagues with different skills and expertise and based in different parts of the world. I find the Hub an enriching environment, where we can discuss and exchange ideas. There is also is significant learning and innovation created through this process.
Martin V: To me, the Advocacy Hub is an “international space of proximity”, where a small number of consultants from a wide diversity of countries intend to understand and challenge each other to better collaborate together. It enables each of us to question our mutual tools and approaches, to better innovate on these approaches, and to work together on common consultancy missions.
Rhonda: I’m connected with colleagues who are equally convinced that we don’t have all the answers, and are excited by the challenge of continuously pushing ourselves to figure out how to make sure evaluation and strategy helps improve advocacy.
Jean-Martial: Being a consultant can be solitary. The Hub gives us a family of peers. I’m in it because the connected world allows us to feel close even if you are far and because diversity is a key attribute of a collective brain. We reflect how new organisations are: networked, non-hierarchical, practice over theory, interested by risk, and aware of complexity.
So, that’s us: a group of geographically and methodologically diverse people, joined by a shared curiosity about how advocacy leads to change and a commitment to percolate innovations that help campaigners, advocates and others working to change the world.