CollaborationCollaboration is working together to achieve shared objectives. So it would make sense for people to gather to work towards getting each others' objectives realized. However, it is not always the case. It is not so easy to collect people around a table and have them work collaboratively although it's functionality has been proven many times.
Rheingold (2005) talks about two dilemmas: The prisoner's dilemma and the tragedy of commons dilemma. The only solution to the former dilemma seems to be the trust of both parties. As for the latter, it is about the mentality. It is about people's understanding of fairness. Ebay example stands as a good example to the solution of the prisoner's dilemma. People would purchase from sellers only if they prove to be trustworthy ones.
I see "the collaborative action" phenomenon as a solution to the issues of today's world. In Brazil, for instance, there is a huge income inequality.There are slums where people do not even have the oven to cook meal while there are shopping malls on the other side of the town where cost of a pair of shoes could be as much as three or four times the minimum monthly wage in the country.
A simple action such as "sharing" would resolve the everlasting inequality problem here in Brazil. When I say "sharing", I do not mean "sharing" literally. I am talking about the regulations that would boost the welfare of everyone in the country. Many crimes such as robbery murder would lessen and Brazil would be a more liveable place for all. Wealthy people in Brazil have so much influence on the politicians that they do not allow for laws that would favor underprivileged families to be carried out. I do not agree that people have a basic instinct to work as a group.
As for promoting collaboration to facilitate learning, PLCs (Professional Learning Communities) are very effective tools.
Green, T., Donovan, L., Bass, K. (2010). Taking laptops schoolwide: A professional l community approach. Learning and Leading with Technology 38(1), p. 12-15. 4 pp.
Rheingold, H. (2005). The New Power of Collaboration [Video file]. Retrieved from http://www.ted.com/talks/howard_rheingold_on_collaboration#t-1156131