Collaboration Principles Research Project


The goal of this website is to build the World's largest case study knowledge resource of innovative organisational design practices - in the category of "Network" or "Self-Management" organizations.

Project Objectives

This website is the product of ongoing research since 2001 with the following objectives:
  1. Gather the evidence: Identify and interview the worldwide Case Studies in innovations in management principles and practices (e.g. based on self-managed/autonomous teams)
  2. Highlight transferable knowledge: Segment, synthesise and publish the transferable knowledge of these Case Studies
  3. Benefit from longitudinal insights: Go behind the scenes (e.g. books, articles, speaches) to understand what really happens in the longterm - do these practices stand the test of time?
The research themes in the context of these Case Studies include:
  • Transferable knowledge defined in the domains of the principles, methodologies and tools for collaboration
  • Impact/influence of the owners and investors
  • Impact of technology in organizational design (e.g. growing impact of automation and Intranets)


Project Background

I have been fascinated over the past 15 years as to how organizations continually negotiate the following three diametric forces:
  1. Efficiency vs. flexibility
  2. Decentralisation vs. coordination
  3. Formalised structures, systems, processes, targets and contracts vs. cultural ties, bonds and trust
  4. Execution (exploitation) vs. adaptation (exploration)
(Further ways of describing the inherent tensions can be found at the bottom of this page.)

Coming across outstanding case studies over these years of companies who have gone the extra mile in experimenting with their structures and cultures to answer the above challenges, I feel they go a long way to answering the above. The key questions driving this research are therefore:
  • What are the essential elements in common across the most innovative management case studies?
  • How have their practices and cultures stood the test of time?
  • What might the future of "Networked" organisational approaches look like (economically, technically, socially)?
One of the early observations from the research is that dialectics pervade so many aspects of organising - freedom for example can only exist thanks to very clear rules that frame that freedom. 
  • Hence, the output objective of this website is to provide companies with a pratical resource of Practices, Principles and Platforms that they can adapt for their own needs - for example, in editing their own "Collaboration Chater" or "Employee Survival Manual".  
It is believed that a great deal of value can drawn from the experiences of these companies, through a structured synthesis of their collaboration principles and practices that each company has experimented with and implemented.

Some of the key terms describing the companies, their structures and the practices are:


What if the specific principles, practices and experiences of the most innovative management  cultures could inspire your company? 

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