[ kuh-lab-uh-rey-shuh n ]
/ kəˌlæb əˈreɪ ʃən /


the act or process of collaborating.
a product resulting from collaboration: This dictionary is a collaboration of many minds.

Origin of collaboration

1855–60; < French < Late Latin collabōrāt(us) (see collaborate) + French -ion -ion

OTHER WORDS FROM collaboration

non·col·lab·o·ra·tion, noun


What does collaboration mean?

Collaboration is the act of working together, especially on a goal or shared project.

It can also be used to refer to a product of collaboration, as in The new single is a  collaboration from the two pop stars. 

Collaboration is the noun form of the verb collaborate, meaning to work together.

Collaboration is often used in a positive context to refer to two or more parties successfully working together on professional or artistic projects. It often implies not just cooperation but sharing and developing of each other’s ideas.

Such a joint effort can be described with the adjective collaborative. People who collaborate are called collaborators.

Collaboration can also be used in a much more specific way referring to cooperation as a traitor with enemy forces in one’s own country. This is much less commonly used than its general sense.

Example: This project would not have happened without close collaboration between all the departments. 

Where does collaboration come from?

The first records of the word collaboration come from around 1860. It ultimately derives from the Latin verb collabōrāre. The prefix col- is a variant of com-, meaning “together.” At the heart of the word is labor, meaning “work.”

Collaboration can be used in any context in which people work together: art, business, education—the collaborative possibilities are endless. The word is often used to refer to a creative give-and-take, such as a collaboration between two artists to paint a mural, or to a joint professional undertaking, such as collaboration between different departments on a report. It’s typically used in the context of some project or goal, whereas the word cooperation is often used more broadly.

Did you know ... ?

What are some other forms of collaboration?



What are some synonyms for collaboration?

What are some words that share a root or word element with collaboration

What are some words that often get used in discussing collaboration?

How is collaboration used in real life?

Collaboration can be used for many different situations, and is particularly associated with cooperative processes that are creative or artistic.



Try using collaboration!

Which of the following words is LEAST likely to be used in reference to a successful collaboration?

A. collective
B. uncooperative
C. joint
D. coordinating

Example sentences from the Web for collaboration

British Dictionary definitions for collaboration

/ (kəˌlæbəˈreɪʃən) /


(often foll by on, with, etc) the act of working with another or others on a joint project
something created by working jointly with another or others
the act of cooperating as a traitor, esp with an enemy occupying one's own country

Derived forms of collaboration

collaborationist, noun