Path to Scale 2023 Meeting Summary

From Principles to Practice: Emerging Insights and Best Practice to Advance Collective Action on “Fit for Purpose” Funding

September 20, 2023



Ford Foundation, New York City, USA and Online


The purpose of the meeting was to reconnect and realign on Path to Scale priorities and strategies by assessing changes in the funding ecosystem, introducing new research and insights, advancing thinking on upcoming/ongoing work products, sharing best practices and lessons from translating principles to practice, and coordinating on shared objectives and messaging for Climate Week and COP 28.

The outcomes of the meeting were that participants 1) gained new insights on the IP, LC, and ADP funding landscape, improving the collective strategy of the P2S; 2) learned collective P2S resources and work products to support their own initiatives; 3) provided guidance on localization recommendations to advance “fit for purpose” funding models among bilateral donors; and 4) aligned on strategic priorities for COP 28 and identified opportunities to further coordinate/collaborate with the FTFG.

Key Takeaways

  1. Partnerships are the Pathway to Achieve Ambitions: Moving from pledges to practice requires multi-stakeholder collaboration to address systemic gaps and barriers. Platforms like the P2S can foster the trust and coordination needed to strengthen/consolidate efforts within this movement and help mainstream “fit for purpose” partnerships between donors, intermediaries, NGOs, and rightsholder communities.
  2. Direct Funding is Defined by Communities: Providing direct funding to IPs, LCs, & ADPs is important to meeting the ambition of the COP 26 Pledge, yet it has been difficult to define and measure. Per leaders and allies of rightsholder movements, the right to self-determination is a central and indelible component of direct funding. Thus, efforts to expand, monitor, and evaluate direct funding pathways must integrate the experiences and perspectives of partner communities. Additionally, direct funding should, as much as possible, minimize transaction costs with acquiring, managing, and reporting on funds, while maximizing community value by embodying “fit for purpose” principles.
  3. Key Groups and Regions have been Overlooked: There are disparities in climate, biodiversity, and conservation funding: Women, youth, and Afro-descendant Peoples are underrepresented and under-resourced, and communities in Asia, the Mano River Basin, and non-forested landscapes feel under prioritized by donors.