Collaboration and LOs LO26212

From: Peggy Stuart (
Date: 02/24/01

Hi all:

I am sure this has already been talked to death on this listserv ... I ask
your indulgence as a LO fledgling :-)

I am having some difficulty getting my head around operationalizing the
concept of collaboration. Some seem to think that the purpose of
collaboration to gather input, others to make a decision as to a course of
action, and others believe the purpose is contextual.

Collaboration is said to mean, " ... to work together towards a common
goal," which says to me that collaboration is much more than meetings,
retreats, etc. However, there seems to be little indication from this
definition as to how the act of collaboration impacts decision-making.

This leads me to ask this listserv three questions, what is collaboration,
why is collaboration important to a LO, and what is the best way to go
about it?

To maybe start things off ...

Senge says in his 5th Disciple Fieldbook says that collaboration is best
when decision making is shared, which means being mutually responsibility,
or accountable, for the outcomes. Without this shared decision making,
there can be no shared creativity or authorship.

Shared decision making is best for when making hard decisions, which I
would think increases the onus on collaboration participants to have all
the information with which to make decisions. I would then assume that
collaborators should be involved in the entire planning process: analysis,
planning, and implementation of the plan and evaluation of the process.





Peggy Stuart <>

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