Can we afford not to collaborate?

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Collaborating is a pleasure and a privilege
See also Collaboration 2.0 | Module III - Collaboration

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Last Update

This entry is out of date, and will not be updated, June 2017

Collaboration defined:

  • Collaboration is:
" work jointly with others or together especially in an intellectual endeavor”. — Merriam-Webster Dictionary
"...working together: the act of working together with one or more people in order to achieve something”. — Encarta
  • Collective intelligence is:
“ …a shared or group intelligence that emerges from the collaboration and competition of many individuals”. — Wikipedia

Ten (10) questions to consider, blog about or reflect on

  1. What are the pros and cons of collaboration? What is the value of collaboration to libraries, and for the library profession?
  2. What kinds of projects are suited to collaboration in information organizations?
  3. Can you identify potential collaborators in LIBR559M? What social tools might be used?
  4. Can you share your ideas about how to collaborate? How have you done this before in your academic programs?
  5. What are the characteristics of successful collaboration in libraries, information organizations, national and international associations?
  6. Developing a collaborative spirit and skills - how will you learn them?
  7. How can you sustain collaboration in library spaces? Are there issues of sustainability with online collaboration?
  8. How can you use communication technologies to promote collaboration?
  9. What sorts of institutional supports and rewards are there for collaboration?
  10. How do we measure the success of collaborative projects? what are the barriers to collaboration?
  • Do you know someone who is a collaborator par excellence? Can you share why you think they are effective collaborators?
  • Have you heard the term Collaboration 2.0?


  • Downes S. Applications of social and collaborative technologies in education. 2008.
  • Fox R, Stuart C. Creating learning spaces through collaboration: How one library refined its approach. Educause Quarterly: A Special Issue on Learning Spaces. 2009;32(1).
  • Hart RL. Collaboration and article quality in the literature of academic librarianship. J Academic Librarianship. 2007;3(2):190-195.
  • Johnson DW, Johnson RT. Learning together and alone: cooperative, competitive, and individualistic learning. New York: Allyn & Bacon; 1998.
  • Kopchok K. Interlibrary loan the wiki way: an effective and free interlibrary loan procedures and communications tool. J Interlibrary Loan, Document Delivery & Electronic Reserve. 2007;18:67-77.
  • Lessig L. Remix: making art and commerce thrive in the hybrid economy; 2008.
  • Levitt JM, Thelwall M. Citation levels and collaboration within library and information science. JASIST. 2009;60(3):434–442.
  • Levy F, Murane RJ. The new Division of Labor: how computers are creating the next job market. Princeton, New Jersey, Princeton University Press; 2005.
  • McFadden Allen BM, Welch A, Zhen Z. Global collaboration: benefits and challenges in developing partnerships. In: Realizing the global university. 2007.
  • Partnership for a Nation of Learners: Joining Forces, Creating Value.
  • Terranova T. Network culture: politics for the information age. London: Pluto Press; 2004.
  • Tapscott D. Wikinomics: how mass collaboration changes everything. New York: Portfolio; 2006.
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