How It Works

The Collaborative Leadership Initiative (CLI) is a facilitated process that provides resources and expertise to support Indigenous and municipal elected leaders as they find solutions to shared water challenges.

The CLI has an established track record that builds on successful approaches implemented in other jurisdictions, including the Northwest Territories, South Africa, and most recently, Manitoba. The CLI leverages a proven process that advances action towards true reconciliation to build trust, strengthen relationships, further ongoing efforts, and develop new initiatives.


CLI starts by working with elected leaders through a structured process to open the lines of communication, identify shared areas of concern, and prioritize key actions that benefits everyone.

Relationships first

CLI invests time and resources to develop respectful and productive relationships. Through the CLI process, elected leaders work together to dispel myths, build trust and understanding, and open new pathways and methods to tackle the tough issues.


The CLI process develops new approaches to decision-making, governance, and planning. CLI works with participants to tailor a process to ensure ongoing and long-term collaborative action.


Sustainability is embedded in the CLI model as it is designed to create permanent change in processes, governance models, and operating systems. Focusing on sustainability from the outset ensures that outcomes are relevant and resilient.

Frequently Asked Questions

Okanagan Storybook

Where We Are Going

Over the next five years, CIER is able to work with interested partners across Canada. If a region is selected for the CLI process, we will assist local partners in developing an approach that meets the needs of participating leaders and their communities. We are funded to provide our expertise and capacity, while participating leaders contribute their time and or in-kind resources to the process.

If you would like to connect with the CLI team, please email us at [email protected]

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