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This Spring, the P3 Impact Award will receive its 300th application. What that partnership does, where it focuses, or who it impacts is still unknown. What is known, however, is that since 2014, 297 applicants have represented 195 countries and have impacted thousands of people.

In partnership with the UVA Darden School of Business and the U.S. State Department’s Office of Global Partnerships, each year at the Annual Summit, Concordia honors leading public-private partnerships (P3s) that improve communities and the world. Now, just over seven months from the 2022 Annual Summit, applications for the P3 Impact Award have opened. Applicants have the opportunity to share their unique perspective on how their cross-sector partnership has created metric-supported, sustainable, and socially-impactful change. When applications close on April 5, 2022, each partnership will go through an initial round of judging that will assess the partnership’s current status.

 This year, I am in the unique position to serve as the internal lead of the P3 Impact Award process. Since I first joined Concordia, as a Summer Intern in 2019, I have had the opportunity to learn about hundreds of socially-impactful partnerships. One of the earliest projects I worked on at Concordia was a data analysis of the 2019 applicant pool. This project reestablished my good faith in people and organizations who actively strive to make a difference in society. From spurring inclusive economic growth in Myanmar to improving access to high-quality, sustainable, community-based primary care across Haiti, there are partnerships being formed continually that focus on different societal challenges.

Following this first round of analysis from the judges, early-stage partnerships from the applicant pool are invited to join the P3 Impact Accelerator. Now in its third year, the Accelerator works with these partnerships to support their positive social impact mission through mentorship, expert guidance, exposure, and networking. This past year, I had the opportunity to work alongside Hanne Dalmut, Concordia’s Senior Director of Partnerships, and with Accelerator participants. Being able to help guide partnerships by addressing common issues that prohibit success and hear firsthand from industry experts was an incredibly rewarding experience.

I am a firm believer that continuous improvement and learning are vital to personal and professional success. To ensure P3 Impact Award applicants are guided in their development, each receives curated feedback, Accelerator participants hear from industry leaders, and the five Finalists of the P3 Impact Award are highlighted in a Darden School of Business Ideas to Action article that assesses the impact of each of the partnerships and provides faculty insight. All of this is done in the lead up to the Concordia Annual Summit in New York City to ensure applicants strive to continuously improve. 

 At the 2022 Annual Summit, a winner will be selected. In 2021, Salud Mesoamerica Initiative was announced as the P3 Impact Award Winner. Their success is centered on a metrics-based approach that improved the health equity gaps for nearly 2 million women and children in Latin America. Another previous winner is Eye Bank of Ethiopia Elimination of Corneal Blindness Partnership, which shared best practices, created consistent supply chains, and advocated for policy reform, resulting in a model that can be scaled and replicated globally. At my first Annual Summit, in 2019, Bioko Island Malaria Elimination Program was announced as the P3 Impact Award winner due in part to their innovative community-based program to address malaria outbreaks.

 These partnerships offer a glance into the larger pool of previous applicants and showcase the breadth of diversity both by location and area of focus. Their success is rooted in their approach: metrics-based, scalable, and community-focused. These varieties show that there is no one clear approach to a successful partnership.

The P3 Impact Award is an example of Concordia’s mission—to build partnerships for social impact—in practice. Concordia uses the P3 Impact Award to elevate cross-sector global partnerships and advance the critical work being done across the world. Through Concordia’s global network, P3 applicants are exposed to expertise and insight that is used to build and support partnering best practices. 

If you are a member of a cross-sector partnership that addresses a societal issue, I encourage you to share your story and apply for the 2022 P3 Impact Award before April 5th.