Partnership working is necessary to allow nations to harness the evolving opportunities presented by climate finance and to progress towards climate compatible development (CCD). However, the new multi-stakeholder partnerships being formed and the factors affecting their outcomes remain poorly understood. This paper aims to identify the characteristics of partnership models that can lead to successful delivery of CCD projects by analyzing case study data from two projects in Zambia. The projects are primarily funded under the umbrella of Corporate Social Responsibility and support activities such as conservation farming which can have carbon storage (mitigation), adaptation and rural development benefits. In each of the case study projects, multiple partnerships have been established between private sector companies, government, Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), traditional authorities and community stakeholders to achieve project aims. A new partnership evaluation model is developed and applied to analyze the partnerships formed. Findings show that the rationale behind the partnership, partner-related factors, and process-related factors can all affect achievement of the project’s aims. Good practices are identified which can inform future partnerships and projects. For example, when establishing a project, the initiating partner must identify gaps that can be addressed by establishing one or more partnership(s). Careful consideration of which partners can best address these gaps allows for synergies in contributions across the partnership required for successful project implementation. Transparency, openness and communication over roles and responsibilities are key to successful partnerships, and power imbalances between partners will reduce the utilization of each partner’s strengths. When working with communities, extra care must be taken to ensure projects are appropriate and relevant to local needs, as well as allowing goals to be met, by engaging communities from the beginning of the project.