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Truly creative collaborations are ones that result in unexpected outcomes. Working on projects like this require all participants to step outside of their normal routines and entertain new ideas.

To provide some guidance in these situations Sitra commissioned Marc Downie, Shelley Eshkar, and Paul Kaiser, who together comprise the OpenEndedGroup. They've honed the practice of working with others during decades of multi-disciplinary arts projects.

The result is this book, Creative Collaborations, which is useful before beginning something like an HDL Studio or any other collaborative project. It's a slim volume that lays out 19 rules of thumb and is intended to be quickly digestible, short enough to be read before a cup of tea gets cold.

19 rules of thumb

  1. Clarify roles & relationships
  2. Muddle makes muddle
  3. Two heads are better than one
  4. Fewer heads are better than too many
  1. Set yourself free
  2. Past predicts future
  3. Bad ideas can lead to good
  4. Beware the good idea
  1. Run a relay race
  2. Set the bar higher
  3. Defeat the status quo
  4. Embrace the opposite
  1. Don't split the difference
  2. Keep a trace
  3. Foster diversity inside
  4. Present a unified front outside
  1. Speak your mind
  2. Pay attention to tension
  3. File your future



This book is made available under a Creative Commons Attribution, Non Commercial, Share Alike license.