Cooperation in the Age of Google

"The last thirty years have seen the introduction of quite different distributed models of organisation. They mix collaboration and delegated responsibility with systemic orchestration, and are most common in those industries dependent on high levels of innovation and external interaction. Front line workers and plant managers have been given greater autonomy and are managed by results and statistical oversight via continuous flows of information. Work is being organised in teams and around projects. Projects draw in other firms in webs of collaboration. The capacity to co-operate, within firms and between them, is becoming more important than the principle of obedience.

There are other trends that run in favour of co-operation:  the increasing involvement of both shop floor workers and consumers in the process of production; the growing importance of a civil economy based on values and mutualism; an expanding class of creative occupations and skills; and a new subjectivity in a generation that puts self expression and autonomy before security, and who are determined authors of their own lives. All of them provide fertile soil for the growth of co-operation at all levels, both formal and informal."

A brief excursion to the U.K. for an overview of enterprise development concerns from Co-opertives UK's recently released Co-operation in the age of Google