Outdoor bridging leadership exercise in Brazil

Bridging Leadership

Global Philanthropists Circle Program

What is Bridging Leadership?

Bridging leadership is a style of leadership that focuses on creating and sustaining effective working relationships among key partners and stakeholders. By “bridging” different perspectives and opinions often found across the breadth of different stakeholders, a common agenda can begin to be developed and shared in order to find solutions to social and economic problems.

The concept was developed by an international group of researchers and development practitioners convened by Synergos. Today the concept incorporates the experiences of the last 25 years of working with partnerships at Synergos as well as experience and research of our colleagues in the Philippines, Latin America and Africa. (Learn more)

The Bridging Leadership for Social Investment Program

The Bridging Leadership for Social Investment is a program for emerging philanthropists and social investors. To tackle complex and systematic social inequalities, participants learn how to embrace systems change, bridge gaps, and collaborate with multi-sector stakeholders including government, private sector and civil society. With the support of their peers, they will develop leadership skills, share their philanthropic vision and acquire valuable lessons on philanthropy and social investment.

The program is designed to apply the bridging leadership framework directly to the participants’ areas of interest and work. Participants will:

  • Learn to see social challenges with the lens of systems thinking, analyze cause and effect relationships and identify the most potent points of leverage.
  • Get to know the elements, models and processes of effective collaboration and examples of successful collaboration among civil society, governments, private sector and communities.
  • Develop capacities and characteristics of a bridging leader.
  • Further self-knowledge and self-mastery, discover sources of inspiration and motivation for social action, and align personal vision and mission.

Participants receive certificate of program completion.

Program Participants

The Synergos Bridging Leadership programs are tailor-made for leaders from all sectors interested in creating collaborations to address complex social and environmental challenges of our times in a systemic and inclusive way.

We also offer special programs that supports a younger generation of philanthropists and social investors to become bridging leaders and better champions in solving social problems. Past cohorts have included philanthropists, Next Generation philanthropists and social investors globally aged 25-45 years, at all stages of giving.

Program Locations


Bridging Leadership Overview

More information on building trust for collective action