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[Xmca-l] Re: Collaboration

Perhaps the work of mike tomasello is relevant to this discussion. I attach
one article. Interesting title, too.

On Mon, Apr 18, 2016 at 8:32 AM, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net> wrote:

> Collaboration has a whole spectrum in many different directions. But I
> think the conflict is an essential part of collaboration. Collaboration is
> unity and difference. Both are required or there is no collaboration. The
> "conflict" may be trivial, but then the moment of collaboration is trivial
> as well. And the learning is trivial.
> I take collaboration as essentially between distinct, i,e, mutually
> independent subjects. If two people who are clones of each other work
> together on the same task, since their every thought is identical there is
> no conflict. Equally two employees, for example, carrying out orders from
> the same boss, work together, I don't see this as collaboration. But these
> are trivial limiting cases. All collaborators have differences relevant to
> the task at hand, and unless it is just a routine division of labour (which
> I call cooperation), or conflict is forbidden or suppressed, there has to
> be some conflict, some ripple on the waters.
> Andy
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> *Andy Blunden*
> http://home.pacific.net.au/~andy/
> On 19/04/2016 1:01 AM, Glassman, Michael wrote:
>> Hi Larry and Andy,
>> This issue of commitment is a difficult one.  If I might bring in a
>> little bit of Mark Granovetter and Everett Rogers, marriage is a strong tie
>> relationships.  Individuals make a commitment to it, as Larry says, so that
>> the relationship is sustainable through even adversarial conflict, or does
>> not collapse at the first sign of conflict.  But most collaborations,
>> especially those that lead to problem solving, are based in weak tie
>> networks.  Do we want to say that weak ties networks can only lead to
>> cooperation.  Isn't there something to collaboration that allows
>> individuals without a prior or even sustainable relationship to come
>> together to create change through evolutionary disagreement that does not
>> engender conflict?  Is that collaboration or is it something else.
>> Michael
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu [mailto:
>> xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu] On Behalf Of Lplarry
>> Sent: Monday, April 18, 2016 10:25 AM
>> To: Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net>; eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity <
>> xmca-l@mailman.ucsd.edu>
>> Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: Collaboration
>> Andy,
>> This introduction of the image of marriage as the archetype of
>> collaboration certainly opens the concept of collaboration to multiple
>> aspects of *engaging conflict* or *managing conflict*.
>> To say collaboration is (like) marriage carries us into a vast field of
>> shared (and conflictual) meanings.
>> Interesting how this image opens towards the imaginal and then travels to
>> distinguishing ZPD from scaffolding.
>> To move from co-operation towards collaboration (as marriage) is moving
>> towards notions of *commitment* and *determinate relations* that remain
>> always *open to change* but within a continuing commitment/collaboration.
>> Marriage is a pregnant gestating image for engaging the concept of
>> collaboration. Marriage as socio-historically meaningful.
>> Sent from my Windows 10 phone
>> From: Andy Blunden
>> Sent: April 18, 2016 5:58 AM
>> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
>> Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: Collaboration
>> The field is rife with different definitions; I choose the set of
>> definitions which suit the overall concept I am developing. Can't do
>> anything about that! But the issue of
>> *conflict* is absolutely essential. Any co-called collaboration in which
>> conflict is either suppressed or organised away is certainly not worthy of
>> the name.
>> That said, conflict has the potential always to destroy a collaboration,
>> and at the same time can be moderated so successfully that it is positively
>> enjoyable. The archetype of collaboration is marriage, so we all know what
>> this is about. Managing conflict is the most essential element of
>> collaboration, but that includes encouraging it as well as moderating it.
>> This issue has echoes of the ZPD vs "scaffolding" question.
>> Andy
>> ------------------------------------------------------------
>> *Andy Blunden*
>> http://home.pacific.net.au/~andy/
>> On 18/04/2016 10:33 PM, Glassman, Michael wrote:
>>> Hi Andy,
>>> Thanks for your response.  I would like to put aside the issue of
>>> computers which I think is extraordinarily complex (are we talking about
>>> the Internet, or the Ethernet, or the Web, or Artificial Intelligence or
>>> Augmentation?  More and more I am feeling these distinctions are critical).
>>> But your post does refer to issues I am struggling with.  There has been
>>> a lot of talk of the difference between cooperation and collaboration at a
>>> number of levels.  Right now I think I like Stephen Downes' distinction
>>> which is cooperation is engaging in community work for your own needs - so
>>> you never really give yourself up to the learning community, while
>>> collaboration involves actually creating a community.  Others I think see
>>> collaboration as the development of shared meaning while cooperation is
>>> simply (shared isn't the right word, right?) action towards a goal.  I
>>> think both to a certain degree reflect your thinking.
>>> I am interested in the idea of conflict, which I think would be
>>> antithetical to PISA's conception of collaboration, they seem to be looking
>>> to cut down on conflict as much as possible.  It also seems to work against
>>> a number of uses of collaboration in the field of education.  Does Alfie
>>> Kohn talk about collaboration - what would he say about conflict.
>>> So I'm thinking though these just working together visions of
>>> collaboration are missing that "something" and conflict, as
>>> counter-intuitive as it is to models of collaboration might make sense.
>>> But what do we mean by conflict.
>>> Is it conflict between members of the collaborative group or is it the
>>> abilities of the collaborative group to see conflict between their
>>> solutions and the realities of the world around them (I know, another
>>> loaded phrase).
>>> We also have a tendency to see conflict of adversarial.  If there is one
>>> thing I think collaboration is, it is non-adversarial in nature.  So can
>>> ideas be in conflict without individuals raising those being adversarial
>>> with each other.  What if people are adversarial to each other and yet
>>> still work together to accomplish important things, or is this
>>> cooperation?  Or is these another concept that hasn't been defined, or
>>> perhaps I am not grasping?
>>> The danger with PISA's definition is there is really no mechanism for
>>> change.  Should collaboration have a mechanism for change or innovation?
>>> Thoughts running around my head.
>>> MIchael
>>> -----Original Message-----
>>> From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu
>>> [mailto:xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu] On Behalf Of Andy Blunden
>>> Sent: Sunday, April 17, 2016 9:10 PM
>>> To: xmca-l@mailman.ucsd.edu
>>> Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: Collaboration
>>> "Collaboration" is a big word in my universe, Michael, so I'll offer
>>> some observations.
>>> Collaboration as "together working" means specifically working together
>>> to a common object (aim). That generally entails working together to change
>>> an object-of-labour (/Arbeitsgegenstand/).
>>> There is a lot of discussion about the difference between Collaboration
>>> and the etymologically identical Cooperation, much of this is in the
>>> "educational debate." As I see it, Collaboration essentially involves both
>>> cooperation and conflict. Conflict is also one form or aspect of
>>> collaboration, because the parties are working towards two opposite
>>> concepts of the same object. "Object" here therefore has a slippery
>>> meaning. It can mean the /Arbeitsgegenstand/, the object worked upon, or
>>> the Gegenstand, the object aimed for. Both ideas incorporate the
>>> possibility of difference.
>>> Collaboration essentially involves the coming together of distinct
>>> parties (or subjects). True Collaboration involves a merging of the
>>> subjectivities for the course of a single project, but there are "limiting
>>> cases" of non-collaborative collaboration. These include an exchange of
>>> labour governed by a negotiation of a contract (such as customer-service
>>> provider in which the subjects retain their mutual independence throughout)
>>> and command-and-obey (in which one subject is subordinated to another).
>>> Cooperation does not imply conflict within the working relationship
>>> usually because there is a division of labour; Collaboration on the other
>>> hand involves each party taking a critical attitude towards the
>>> contribution of the other party. o conflict is an essential ingredient to
>>> Collaboration.
>>> Collaboration is a learning process, to the extent that one could argue
>>> that learning can *only* be a Collaborative process. So Collaboration means
>>> that the object (aim) of the labour changes, because the /concept /of the
>>> object changes.
>>> Collaborators learn about the object (worked upon) in the process of
>>> working on it, and the object (aim) by realising it.
>>> In education there has been an unfortunate development in which (1)
>>> students work independently because they are physically or organisationally
>>> distant, (2) Collaboration between the students is then facilitated by the
>>> use of computer and communication equipment, (3) Students who are already
>>> face-to-face are obliged to introduce a computer between them so that their
>>> collaboration, instead of being face-to-face, mediated only by the
>>> /Arbeitsgegenstand/, they now find their Collaboration mediated by a
>>> computer. That is, "Collaboration" has come to mean the undermining of
>>> Collaboration by the use of Collaborative tools to avoid closer
>>> collaboration.
>>> And this is the danger. The education bureaucracy has heard a bit about
>>> the benefits of Collaboration as a learning process, and that Collaboration
>>> requires equipment. So they get the idea that they have to separate
>>> students or researchers from one another so that they can collaborate.
>>> Once separated the bureaucacy can provide equipment to allow students
>>> to Collaborate notwithstanding their having been separated from one
>>> another. And the same goes for
>>> students+teachers, research+industry, management+workers, etc.
>>> Does that help, Michael?
>>> Andy
>>> ------------------------------------------------------------
>>> *Andy Blunden*
>>> http://home.pacific.net.au/~andy/
>>> On 18/04/2016 6:38 AM, Glassman, Michael wrote:
>>>> Hello all,
>>>> I have a question for anybody who might be willing to respond. How do
>>>> you define collaboration?  What spurs this question is that PISA is
>>>> developing a framework for testing collaboration internationally.  At first
>>>> I thought I was getting punked, but it really is happening, the framework
>>>> is at the link below.   The idea of collaboration is being used more and
>>>> more - especially in contexts that involve computer/web based research, but
>>>> it often times seems to be a placeholder.  The word only came into vogue
>>>> late nineteenth century I think -  col meaning together and labore meaning
>>>> to labor.  A lot of people who discuss collaboration invoke Vygotsky (e.g.
>>>> the PISA framework) or sometimes Dewey (Although I am kind of sure Dewey
>>>> never actually used the word collaboration, but I  might be wrong).  Anyway
>>>> the PISA document defines collaboration but in a very simplistic way I
>>>> think so that it is not wrong but not helpful.  I know there was some
>>>> research around language (being able
>>>   to
>>>     create shared meanings).  But so far to me it seems to miss the
>>>> point, but I can't think what I would replace it with.  I guess you could
>>>> call this a request for comments.  I find PISA creating a test for
>>>> collaboration kind of dangerous.
>>>> https://www.oecd.org/pisa/pisaproducts/Draft%20PISA%202015%20Collabor
>>>> a tive%20Problem%20Solving%20Framework%20.pdf
>>>> Michael


It is the dilemma of psychology to deal as a natural science with an object
that creates history. Ernst Boesch

Attachment: Tom.cooperation.pdf
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