The Good Work Project underscored the importance of “good collaboration.” Although many collaborative ventures are successful, many apparently promising partnerships fail despite the good intentions, skills, effort, and commitment of those involved. Non-profit organizations increasingly encounter opportunities and pressures to work together. Many nonprofits are small and targeted; the problems of the world are demanding and can benefit from well-conceived, coordinated efforts. Consequently, whether any organization succeeds in its efforts, and ultimately whether it endures, is increasingly dependent upon its ability to collaborate effectively. Educational non-profits are no exception: financial needs and opportunities, complex problems, synergistic goals, and complementary resources bring individuals from complex and diverse organizations into alliance with one another.
Funded by John Abele and the Argosy Foundation and, in its first phase co-funded by the Noyes Family, the Collaboration study sought to understand factors that contribute to successful collaborations and those which compromise collaborative work. From 2009-2015, we followed innovative approaches to collaboration among higher education institutions and non-profit organizations in education, in the United States and beyond. We conducted in-depth interviews with individuals in these institutions; we also disseminated surveys and observed campus and on-line interactions among individuals and institutions.
In addition, we developed the Good Collaboration Toolkit. The Toolkit helps individuals who are considering a collaboration and also helps sustain productive collaborations.
Visit the Research Papers page to see a collection of papers on Good Collaboration.