The original aim of the partnership was to support the SDC management and staff to improve the quality and effectiveness of SDC processes and operations focused on poverty. It was a demand-driven programme, matching IDS expertise with specific queries and needs from the SDC.
The three priority areas of the Learning Partnership were:
To support the QA/Poverty Reduction section in lobbying to keep poverty at the core of SDC's agenda, programmes and strategies
To improve SDC strategies and operations by enhancing the power-sensitive practice of existing tools and instruments; and to develop better poverty alleviation strategies based on adequate analysis of poverty, vulnerability and exclusions
To broker the international debates and trending topics around poverty and politics of aid to the SDC. The learning partnership thus supported SDC's organisational learning and change processes to improve poverty programming
The learning partnership worked with two different mechanisms or modalities of support: accompaniments and learning trajectories
1. Accompaniments were a short-term response to requests for support from SDC regional, country or HQ level, for an input to a specific activity or process or to produce outputs.
2. Learning trajectories used the methodology of 'reflective practice', based on well-proven organisation learning processes with an IDS mentor facilitating a group of SDC staff as they reflected and learnt about a particular issue.