Network and collaboration research futures

Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Title

Networks And Collaboration In The Public Sector: Essential Research Approaches, Methodologies And Analytic Tools


Taylor & Francis


School of Business and Law




Chamberlain, D., Farr-Wharton, B. (2021). Network and collaboration research futures. In Voets, J., Keast, R., & Koliba, C. (Eds.). Networks and Collaboration in the Public Sector: Essential research approaches, methodologies and analytic tools, (p.242-255). Taylor & Francis https://www.routledge.com/Networks-and-Collaboration-in-the-Public-Sector-Essential-research-approaches/Voets-Keast-Koliba/p/book/9780367784430


Collaboration and social network research have a long history together and will likely be entwined for a long time yet. Collaborative and networked arrange- ments are vital to the public sector, allowing the knowledge and resources of multiple organizations to come together and address intractable problems that are beyond the ability of any single organization to address independently. Social network research, with its focus on relationships and relational analysis, is a natural fit for understanding how both networks and collaborations function, and for exploring ways to make them more efficient, effective and economi- cal. The growing demands for measuring outcomes and impacts of networks and collaborations is driving the research into good network practice and good collaborative practice, much of which is covered in the earlier chapters of this book. Out of these demands has come a confluence of qualitative and quantita- tive approaches; quantitative researchers are recognizing that network research cannot rely solely on positivist approaches, and qualitative researchers are increas- ingly incorporating quantitative tools, such as qualitative comparative analysis. [...].

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