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Stakeholder Identification Exercises

Learn about useful exercises for identifying stakeholders that have a legitimate stake in the outcome of a decision or project.
Branislava Matic

Chapati/ Institutional Diagramming

The aim of this exercise is to enable people to identify the institutions and individuals that have a legitimate stake in the outcome of a decision or project. The term ‘chapati’ comes from the use of differently sized round circles which indicate the importance of each organisation to the community. The relative position of each circle to the central circle (the issue) indicates their accessibility. This can first be practised on the floor and then copied onto paper. On the floor many people can join in, though usually only one person will draw the diagram on paper. A variation on the diagram includes drawing straight lines between organisations where the relationship is good and dotted lines where the relationship is difficult.

Creating the diagram is only the first step. The discussion (including where there is disagreement in the group) resulting from the diagram should reveal much more.

Links between the stakeholders could also be made to give more information about how strong or clear ties are e.g. a thick line (strong ties), a thin line (weaker ties) a dotted line (risk of sabotage) etc.

Box Diagram

This uses a simple matrix to help you to group stakeholders according to their importance with respect to the issue and their ability to influence and coerce the other stakeholders. e.g.

Social Network Analysis

Social Network Analysis (SNA) focuses on analysing the types and forms of relationships between stakeholders, including flows of information and power. It is a very useful technique for identifying the relationships between stakeholders and the barriers to effective communication and collaboration. For more information including case studies please see the Social Network Analysis page.

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