Lessons Learned about Research Collaboration

Categories: Focus Series, Instruction, Other, Research, Research Skills, Teaching


Collaboration is a MethodSpace focus for December. We will look at the various types of collaboration that engage researchers and academic writers. 

Emma Jeanes, Bernadette Loacker and Martyna Śliwa co-authored a chapter about researcher collaboration for the book, Critical Management Research: Reflections from the Field (2014). While they studied experiences of researchers within a specific discipline, the lessons learned are useful for all of us. The chapter, “Researcher Collaboration: Learning from Experience” is open access through the end of January. (Follow this link to read or download the chapter: http://bit.ly/2Uz6OpG)

Jeanes et al. introduce the chapter by discussing the fact that while many research texts focus on relationships between researchers and participants or other stakeholders, few look at the relationships among researchers. At this point, many of us collaborate either voluntarily or as part of a larger project. In our connected world, many of these projects engage researchers from across distances or disciplines, cultures or levels of seniority, we need to understand how to work together to co-produce new scientific knowledge. 

To develop this chapter, the authors gathered input from other researchers:

Rather than rely on our own experiences, we sought to draw upon a broader range of experiences and reflections from the field of CM research from which others can learn. To this end the chapter aims to give voice to researchers, highlighting the precarious and, at times, unequal nature of collaboration. It then seeks to explore the nature of these relations and reflect on why such relationships may arise and what might be done to improve relations.


Use the comment area to share your own experiences as a research collaborator, as well as tips or resources for others who are preparing to join with others on a research project. Log into MethodSpace to receive new posts in your inbox (and no SPAM!). You can also find more posts in this series by following the collaboration tag http://bit.ly/2Sfmq0F.

Learn more on SAGE MethodSpace:

Jeanes, E.,Loacker, B. & Śliwa, M. (2014). Researcher collaboration: learning from experience. In Jeanes, E., & Huzzard, T. Critical management research: Reflections from the field (pp.41-60). London: SAGE Publications Ltd doi: 10.4135/9781446288610

One thought on “Lessons Learned about Research Collaboration

  1. Thank you Janet, I have the chapter and will read it later, I appreciate the free access.
    I will read it before I comment further but for now, some of the the major factors I have found within research-publication collaborations that impact on their productivity and output is (1)preserving the relationship – sustaining it over a period of time including the very important getting-to-know-you phase at the start of the relationships – it takes relationship wisdom but none of us are perfect and misunderstandings are easy (2)working out what to do if someone gets sick or cant do the promised work on time or for whatever reason wont do the work (3)keeping a team on track when working with people across large distances – that is, where face-to-face collaborations are impossible and (4)if working as independent scholars, working out how to cover the costs eg conference fees, travel etc.
    Thanks again for the open access to the chapter

Leave a Reply