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Principles of Collaboration Cheat Sheet (DRAFT) by [deleted]

This is a draft cheat sheet. It is a work in progress and is not finished yet.


The following Principles of Collab­oration are borrowed from the Michigan State University Museum who developed the first 12 principles below for its Carriers of Culture project.

1. Recipr­ocity

At the heart of successful collab­ora­tions there needs to be direct benefit to partic­ipating stakeh­olders. Ideally, these reciprocal rewards, while not often the same, will enrich each partner in expected or unexpected ways.

2. Repres­ent­ation

The most successful collab­ora­tions bring all relevant stakeh­olders to the table to launch and implement the collab­ora­tion. This requires thinking broadly to identify potential partic­ipa­nts­….This includes consid­eration of … gender, age, geographic distri­but­ion­…tr­adi­tions… and I would add culture, knowledge, experi­ence, and connec­tivity to other networks and resources.

3. Reach

The best collab­ora­tions usually have an impact beyond the individual projec­t–they build new collab­orative opport­uni­ties.

4. Skill and Human Develo­pment

Whatever the product of the collab­orative project, it should result in the empowe­rment of those involved, the transf­orm­ation of their organi­zat­ions, and building new individual and organi­zat­ional capacity.

6. Belief in Collab­oration

Those involved must believe that more can be achieved by working together than working alone, and bring this perspe­ctive to the dialogue.

7. Instit­utional Relati­onships Rather Than ...

Individual partic­ipants are often also instit­utional repres­ent­atives; when this occurs there is a commitment to build instit­utional capacity by enriching the knowledge and skills of indivi­duals within the organi­zation.
Instit­utional Relati­onships Rather Than Individual Relati­ons­hips:

8. Transp­arency

There is a real need for open and honest expression of aspira­tions, expect­ations, and a process to ensure ongoing review and evalua­tion. Real transp­arency takes time, energy and a desire to build a sense of trust and respect.

9. Continuity and Regularity

Regular commun­ication is critical as is the establ­ishment of and adherence to timelines.

10. Acknow­led­gement of Contri­butions

Acknow­led­gement of Contri­but­ions: A willin­gness to acknow­ledge contri­butions and share credit is a goal.

11. Continual Consul­tation

New relati­onships demand invest­ments of time, energy and good will.
— Marsha MacDowell and C. Kurt Dewhurst, Michigan State University Museum, August 2004

12. Equitable Partic­ipation

Those at the collab­orative table not only have an obligation to partic­ipate fully, they have a respon­sib­ility to ensure that opport­unities for partic­ipation are extended to one another.

13. Trust

The foundation of collab­oration must include trust in one another and a commitment to behaviours that deepen and widen the trust – behaviours like transp­arency, follow through, honesty, and proven ability to not only influence others but be influenced by our partners as well.

14. Dialog

Dialog is more than commun­ica­tion. It includes helping others get their ideas out before judging them in order to ensure the full expression of ideas. It calls for indivi­duals to be facili­tative of mutual exchange much more so than using commun­ication as tool of persua­sion.