Unlike many development organizations and NGOs, CEN feels the development process can be best advanced by focusing on certain core areas of competency, and assembling and managing a team of partnerships with other organizations that have demonstrated the ability to execute best practice solutions through particular geographic, technical or discipline specializations. This approach permits the delivery of a comprehensive development solution without the waste associated with unnecessary duplication of skills, infrastructure, and overhead. Scarce resources shouldn’t be spent on building an organization, but rather to address the development need itself. We should not recreate the wheel when there are others who have already gone through a very steep learning curve to get where they are.
In the for-profit world, for example, most successful companies figure out what their core competencies are and then outsource (or partner with other organizations) for the rest. Microsoft doesn’t run manufacturing for most of the product or even handle certain areas of product development, support, and marketing; they farm this out to very skilled partners. Becoming a specialist in all areas and competencies is a wasteful use of resources if other competent organizations are available. These partners can perform the function at a lower cost and execute better due to greater expertise.
The following are CEN's core areas of strength: