04 December 2014

Partnering for a caring economy

There is a movement afoot, based on partnership theory, to create a caring economy, and nurses around the world are positioned to accelerate it. Fundamental success requires that each of us recognize differences between a domination and partnership paradigm and consequences associated with those differences. To support cultural transformation, we need to take personal and professional responsibility for starting new conversations about the value of partnership and the economics of caring. Fortunately, there are new ways to share and engage in conversation and dialogue.

I recently had the privilege of attending an event to launch a new open-access resource, the Interdisciplinary Journal of Partnership Studies. This new journal is dedicated to the integration of knowledge that supports cultural transformation. Teddie Potter, PhD, RN, and Marti Lewis-Hunstiger, BSN, MA, RN, the journal’s executive and managing editors, are members of the Honor Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI). The publication builds on the work of noted scholar Riane Eisler, JD, co-founder of the Center for Partnership Studies. I invite you to explore this new journal and contribute to its success, vision, and mission.

As people come to value, understand, and believe in the power of partnership, they feel freer to contribute to and participate in making change, exploring alternatives, challenging the status quo, and opening up channels of communication. Partnerships invite a learn-and-grow attitude and weaken a protect-and-defend stance. When people feel valued, respected, and included, a sense of community heightens and solidifies commitments to sustainability and co-creation of desired futures.

One of the most important initiatives to emerge from the Center for Partnership Studies is the Caring Economy Campaign. Consider how the campaign is aligned with the vision, mission, and goals of STTI to advance world health through nursing knowledge, learning, and service, including its dedicated commitment toward meeting the United Nations Millennium Development Goals. A key initiative of the Caring Economy Campaign is the development and diffusion of new metrics and measures related to social economic wealth indicators.

Nurses know that caring societies lead to stronger economies. It is time to invest in the development of metrics and measures that help determine and make explicit the social wealth that is essential to our insights, understanding, and strategic-foresight actions relating to future sustainability. Add knowledge about the caring economy to your intellectual capital so you can be a part of the partnership for cultural transformation story. Consider how you might use partnership theory and the notion of a caring economy as you exert nursing leadership influence in your spheres of influence.

For Reflections on Nursing Leadership (RNL), published by the Honor Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International. Comments are moderated. Those that promote products or services will not be posted.