Innovative Partnerships: A Review of Innovative Public-Private Partnerships in Food-Energy-Water-Environment Domains in the UK

Innovative Partnerships


Pete Barbrook-Johnson, a UKRI Innovation Fellow hosted by CECAN, has published the first report from his 3-year fellowship. The report reviews innovative public-private partnerships working in the UK on food-energy-water- environment ‘nexus’ domains. It can be found at


The UK is at a crossroads with public-private partnerships. For some, they are loathsome symbols of privatisation and financialisation, for others they are beacons of hope for reforming public services. In reality, they are something in between, and indeed, not all one and the same. As part of a re-imagining of what public-private partnerships are and can be, Pete’s report reviews innovative partnerships working in the UK on food-energy-water- environment ‘nexus’ domains. He sees ‘innovative partnerships’ as partnerships which are not based on contractual, bilateral, zero-sum, low trust, transactional relationships, but those which are built on shared goals, addressing problems, and trust. The report finds a vibrant community of interconnected partnerships, with the most activity and interaction in water and environment domains, and at local scales. Organisations from all sectors play important roles, though public sector organisations tend to fill a significant bridging role between partnerships.


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