Benefits of Collaboration

Our interviewees bring to life some of the benefits and challenges of collaboration in building sustainable communities. Their insights are complemented by researchers who have studied collaboration in the contemporary problem domain of focus.

With due acknowledgement of the overlap between outcomes and impacts presented in lesson three, we highlight the benefits of co-operation that are well established by scholars.

We start with the outcomes (results) identified in the recent systematic mapping review by Feist et al. (2020).

Another example comes from the successes identified through the systematic review of adaptive co-management by Plummer et al. (2012).

Finally, Caldwell et al. (2015) provide a summary of the benefits realized through community-based participatory research partnerships, touching upon both personal challenges one might experience, organizational challenges, as well as challenges working with the community.

As you can see from the bolded text in these tables, there are multiple benefits that can occur through collaboration. These benefits can be seen on the physical and/or social environment, and they may also directly impact the people involved in the co-operation. For example, collaborative efforts often promote the participation and involvement of relevant stakeholders and rights holders in matters that affect them. By involving all relevant stakeholders and rights holders in a project, the outcomes can be applicable to a variety of people (Estrella & Gaventa 1998). Additionally, through a collaborative process, decision-making strategies have a higher likelihood of being implemented, as people learn to negotiate and agree upon solutions (Emerson et al., 2012; Ulibarri, 2015). Although many of the outcomes of collaborative initiatives are context specific, there are multiple benefits that can be realized from any project.


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Building Sustainable Communities: Collaboration by Ryan Plummer; Amanda Smits; Samantha Witkowski; Bridget McGlynn; Derek Armitage; Ella-Kari Muhl; and Jodi Johnston is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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