A kind of teamwork towards a shared goal characterized by short phases of task allocation (e.g. planning a customer interview together) and longer phases of individual work packages in sub-groups (e.g. doing the interview fieldwork).

Cooperation often gets mistaken for collaboration in general business parlance. However, it’s not the same. When cooperating, the team is not together for the whole time and disperses into sub-groups for certain activities, which then get stitched together at a certain cadence .


Plattner, H., Meinel, C., & Leifer, L. (Eds.). (2018). Design Thinking Research: Making Distinctions: Collaboration versus Cooperation. Springer International Publishing.