and suspicion are a primary barrier to co-operation between organizational and professional boundaries; collaborative behaviour is hardly conceivable where trusting attitudes are absent’. In contrast to other modes of social co-ordination where price is the mechanism of exchange in markets and power and status is the mechanism in hierarchies, trust is seen as the main mechanism in collaborative environments – in other words, the glue or lubricant that allows people and organizations to engage in collective action. One of its main benefits is that it reduces the transaction costs of the other form of relationships. However, it is a complex and highly contested notion that has attracted a considerable body of diverse literature and understandings. It is seen variously as: a way of coping with risk or uncertainty in relationships between people and organizations; a belief that the vulnerability resulting from the acceptance of risk will not be taken advantage of by other parties; and that it is essentially rooted in faith and the goodwill of others! Trust certainly is not a static notion – it has a dynamic, and trusting relationships can spiral upwards and downwards. The problem, of course, occurs when trust is broken and whether and how it can be repaired. Some interesting questions for you to ponder on today perhaps are : • Is there such a thing as trust between organizations and groups, or can it only occur between individual people? • Can you work in collaboration with people that you cannot trust and if so, how? • More fundamentally, can you really trust trust? Some argue that trust is just another form of power is used as a façade to mask someone’s real intentions.
Sixthly, let me turn now, to the subjects of Learning and Knowledge Management – aspects of collaboration, which are often taken for granted and not accorded the attention they deserve. In my view, the essence of a collaborative endeavour is fundamentally about the challenge and dynamics of different organizations, professional groups and other key actors coming together to learn about managing and governing the resolution of wicked problems and issues. The full potential of collaboration can only be enhanced through the mobilisation of the diversified capabilities and knowledge resources provided by these different parties. Knowledge needs to be co-produced and shared by the different actors to achieve the most effective and appropriate outcomes. However, learning and knowledge management processes are highly complex, and are the subject of both structural and agential determinants. A number of factors are influential in promoting effective interventions, but others act as barriers and reduce or dilute the potential of collaboration. The important lesson for practice and policy is that there is a strong case for the development of coherent and planning strategies for learning and knowledge management that are integral to the collaborative policy making process. This is not to negate a role for spontaneous and unplanned individual and group learning, but there is a compelling case for a planned and structured approach.
Atas da conferências Internacional GovInt 15 a 16 de outubro de 2016