MBN for SupervisorsManaging by Network

Information for Supervisors

Managing by Network is an inter-agency training program for public agencies, organizations, and partners working to cooperatively steward our nation's natural, cultural, and recreational resources.

The program's goal is to increase the level of preparedness and self-confidence of all course participants working directly or indirectly with partners, community collaboratives, Native Nations and Indigenous people. 

This live, online course is offered to 120 participants, from January to June. All training is completed online; no travel is required.

Selection is competitive, and applications open in the Fall. Some scholarships may be available for employees of cohost agencies including BLM, NPS, USDA FS, and USFWS.


Instructional content features the knowledge, skills, abilities and behaviors associated with 22 partnership and community collaboration competencies (defined by OPM), and related federal authorities. 

Managing by Network Gets Results

More than 1,300 graduates have completed the program, representing federal, state and local agencies, Native Nations, nonprofits, contractors, and educational instutitons working on public engagement, resource management and stewardship.

  • Graduates place a high value on learning and building their peer network with participants from diverse public agencies.
  • More than 90 percent of course participants apply course content daily, weekly and monthly.
  • Course evaluations show a proven track record in increasing participants’ preparedness to apply key competencies on the job.


Learn More About Managing by Network

  • Course Learning Objectives

    Applying knowledge and skills learned in this course, participants will be able to:

    1. Strengthen an internal and external network of individuals and organizations to advance the mission of the agency,
    2. Build trust with partners, interested parties, and the public using a professional skill set of 22 competencies,
    3. Demonstrate professional competence in applying best practices for partnership, community collaboration, and Tribal consultation,
    4. Apply social science concepts and practices to support relevance and resilience in partnering and collaboration,
    5. Recognize the relationship between sunshine laws including the Paperwork Reduction Act and the Federal Advisory Committee Act to build accountability and trust between public agencies or organizations and their partners, interested parties, and the public. 
  • Course Eligibility

    We invite applications from members of agencies, organizations, Tribes and Indigenous Communities who are working cooperatively in natural, cultural, and recreational resource management at the national, regional, state or local level.  

    To facilitate peer learning, this course relies on participants who have demonstrated interest and a compelling need for training, and who have position responsibilities that include multi-agency collaboration, partnerships, community collaboration, and/or Tribal consultation. 

    Employees with critical support roles, such as grants and agreements, contracting, public affairs, information collections, and law enforcement are eligible to apply. Contractors for these agencies or organizations are also eligible to apply.

    Managing by Network alumni include representatives from BLM, BOEM, DOI, DHS, DOD, EPA, HHS, FAA, NOAA, NPS, USACE, USBR, USGS, USDA FS, USDA NRCS, USFWS, as well as Native Nations, states, counties, nonprofits, and educational organizations.

  • Course Format

    Managing by Network is a live, six-month, 18-webinar course held virtually from January to June.  The course focuses on 22 competencies related to partnership and community collaboration.

    MbN 2025 Dates:

    • Start Date: January 29 & 30, 2025 (Orientation on January 15 & 16)
    • End Date: June 11 & 12, 2025

    Participants will spend 2 hours a week in a live webinar, interspersed with Self-Study weeks with optional learning activities. Our teaching style encourages participants to take an active role in webinar discussions. Participants build skills and knowledge that can be applied immediately to their position responsibilities.

    Each session includes:

    • 2 hours of live instruction, facilitated discussion, and interactive exercises. Some sessions also include guest speakers and case study presentations.
    • Optional  homework to complete before and after webinars. Assignments include videos, reading, and worksheets varying from 10-30 minutes. 
    • Access to course materials, resources and links.


  • Participation Requirements

    Course requirements:

    • Attend 10 or more live webinars to earn a Certificate of Completion. Participants will not receive a certificate by completing self-study in place of attending 10 or more live webinars.
    • Complete an individual Training Needs Self-Assessment and Course Evaluation; each survey takes about 20-30 minutes. Self-Assessment results serve as a benchmark for course participants and enable us to tailor the course to meet the training needs of the incoming class.

    Voluntary learning and development activities:

    Self-Study provides one pathway to enrich learning and support application. This work is NOT required and may be completed at any time during the course. Activities include:

    • Optional Homework that may be completed before or after class.  
    • Optional networking sessions with peers during non-instructional weeks.

    Case Study Program:

    • Participants have the option to present a peer-to-peer Case Study in class. Case study presenters share their aspirations and lessons learned about their work in partnerships and community collaboration. 12 case study spots are available each year. 
    • Case Study presentations are voluntary and not required for course completion. Case Study presenters qualify for an Honors Certificate of Completion.
    • Presentations promote peer-learning and networking, and are posted to the Academy's case study catalog of more than 200 presentations.


  • Course Completion and Certificates

    • Participants who attend 10 or more live Managing by Network webinars are awarded a Certificate of Completion as an official record of 38 hours of training in 22 partnership and community collaboration competencies defined by OPM.
    • Participants who present a Case Study are awarded an Honors Certificate of Completion.
    • Participants who attend 15 or more live webinars are awarded an Honors Certificate of Completion. Participants may earn an Honors Certificate by submitting make-up work for missed sessions, after the minimum attendance requirement is met.
    • Participants who earn a certificate for Managing by Network may receive 3 Continuing Education Credits (CEUs) or 2 undergraduate college credits for this course. Credits are certified by Shepherd University, WV in partnership with the USFWS National Conservation Training Center. 
    • Participants will not receive a certificate by completing self-study in place of attending 10 live webinars.
    • Agencies may have their own policies and procedures regarding attendance. Please review your attendance obligations with your assigned Managing by Network Federal Coordinator. Note: The acceptance of a scholarship obligates the recipient to fulfill the course requirements, on behalf of their work unit. In the event that a scholarship recipient needs to withdraw from the course, prior to completing certificate requirements, work unit reimbursement of the scholarship may apply, per agency policy.
  • Tuition

    Tuition for 2025 is $2,100. Scholarships are available for some agencies. Learn more about tuition.

    Contact us for more information.

Managing by Network is cohosted by:

  • Partnership and Community Collaboration Academy
  • BLM National Training Center and National Conservation Lands and Community Partnerships Directorate
  • DOI Office of Collaborative Action and Dispute Resolution
  • NPS Stewardship Institute
  • USACE Collaboration and Public Participation Center of Expertise
  • USFS National Partnership Office
  • USFWS National Conservation Training Center

MBN Overview

MBN Course Schedule

MBN Course Schedule



MBN Tuition

MBN Tuition

The 22 Competencies

The Competencies

MBN Alumni

MBN Alumni

What do Alumni like about Managing by Network?

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