Roadmender Recommends

Every now and then collaboration can be frustrating.  Invariably it gets people wondering if it is worth the effort and in particular if collaboration is really possible given that humans are prone to both competition and collaboration.  How to reconcile the drivers?  In my first book (The Collaboration Instinct) I wrote extensively on the subject.  One thing that I maintain is that collaboration actually works much better when competition is part of it. The two are not opposed. They complement each other.  But the best suggestion for collaboration strategists is to learn and discover for themselves.  Here is the latest edition of recommended reading to help in the process of ongoing learning and discovery.


Competition or cooperation — which human instinct is stronger?


Photo: Are human beings intrinsically competitive? Or are we wired to want to help each other? (Getty: Chris Ryan)

If you’ve played sport, been up for a promotion or watched Question Time in Parliament, you’ll have seen how competitive people can be.

But psychologist Niki Harre believes our instinct to cooperate is stronger than our instinct to compete — if only we could reconnect with it.

“I think we’re told a narrative of survival of the fittest, that it’s in our selfish genes to compete and to try and get ahead,” she says.

But she says there is more to the story — as a simple example shows.

“If you’re on a bus and you see somebody who obviously needs a seat more than you do, we tend to give them the seat, that’s in our impulse,” says Dr Harre, from the University of Auckland.

“So I think we’re caught in a contradiction — a story that tells us that we’re supposed to be selfish and competitive, and an instinct or impulse to be generous…READ ON


Collaboration sparks sustainable electronics manufacturing breakthrough

Simon Fraser University and Swiss researchers are developing an eco-friendly, 3-D printable solution for producing wireless Internet-of-Things (IoT) sensors that can be used and disposed of without contaminating the environment. Their research has been published as the cover story in the February issue of the journal Advanced Electronic Materials.  SFU professor Woo Soo Kim is leading the research team’s discovery involving the use of a wood-derived cellulose material to replace the plastics and polymeric materials currently used in electronics…READ ON


Private-Sector Collaboration for Sustainable Development

In the past year, it has become increasingly clear that the world is changing fast—and profoundly. We are faced with challenges such as catastrophic climate change, increasing inequalities, and the rapid emergence of new technologies that disrupt societies and raise new, fundamental ethical questions.

To tackle these challenges, we must transcend the status quo of individual actions to foster collaboration for impact at scale. We need well-designed, well-governed, accountable, and impactful collaborations.

Drawing on BSR’s 25 years of experience in designing, implementing, and scaling collaborative initiatives, this report identifies the characteristics of successful collaborations and helps companies better understand how to prepare for and contribute to their success….READ ON


Brains of 3 People Have Been Successfully Connected, Enabling Them to Share Thoughts

Neuroscientists have successfully hooked up a three-way brain connection to allow three people to share their thoughts – and in this case, play a Tetris-style game.

The team thinks this wild experiment could be scaled up to connect whole networks of people, and yes, it’s as weird as it sounds…READ ON


Collaborative Communications: It’s All About Empowerment

As No Jitter readers surely understand, communications and collaboration can be a competitive differentiator, enabling the agility their companies need to survive and, more importantly, thrive in today’s fast-paced economy.

Companies are best served when they give their users the ability to collaborate from within a single, unified platform. Consider the alternative: Users waste time toggling from one app to another (phone, chat, email, etc.), breaking the creative flow, slowing the overall process, and leaving them scrambling to put information into context — time and time again.

An integrated platform that facilitates collaboration with workers both inside and outside the organization, on the other hand, breaks down workforce barriers that limit productivity, inhibit teamwork, and tamp down innovation…READ ON


The Four Quintessential Advantages of Collaboration

“Since times immemorial, effective communication has been the foundation for thriving in the world we inhabit. It is the lack of the same which results in misunderstanding and that inevitably snowballs into not only less than optimum circumstances but undesirable outcomes in a myriad range of occasions.

Business are no different. For organizations to thrive, an effective and rich platform for communication facilitates the path and is the catalyst for growth, profitability and unified experiences.  Revolutionary innovations in technology over the past few decades have resulted in the transformation of businesses communicating via dumb terminals and archaic dial based telephone sets from bygone eras with spiral wires dangling across desks to real-time,larger than life, engaging and immersive experiences in the form of video thereby creating a world without any barriers or boundaries…READ ON