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Defining collaboration is difficult because of ambiguities in practical
usage. For example, the word collaboration is commonly interchanged
with terms such as networking, cooperation, and
coordination. To distinguish collaboration from other terms,
Chris Huxham, in Creating Collaborative Advantage (1996), provides
definitions of these terms:
- Networking is exchanging information for mutual benefit.
- Coordination is exchanging information and altering activities for
mutual benefit and to achieve a common purpose.
- Cooperation is exchanging information, altering activities, and sharing
resources for mutual benefit and to achieve a common purpose.
Huxham distinguishes these terms from collaboration:
Collaboration is the exchange of information, the altering of
activities, the sharing of resources, and the enhancement of the
capacity of another for the mutual benefit of all and to achieve
a common purpose.
Three tables that appear later in this bulletin briefly illustrate how
Denver victim service agencies moved from networking to collaboration
in three areas that became VS2000 project initiatives: an online Resource
Directory, an online Case Management System,
and the Community Advocacy Program. The
tables note the stage in the collaboration continuum at which the agencies
became involved in the VS2000 project.
Work: The Experiences of
Denver Victim Services 2000
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