Collaboration: On the Edge of a New Paradigm?

56 minutes 8.5/10 based on 2 votes

This documentary, which was produced and directed by Alfred Birkegaard and Katja Gry Birkegaard Carlsen, explores how the Internet is changing the way in which we do science and create knowledge. It takes the viewer on a journey from Danish biology papers all the way to Google’s headquarters.

It all began when Alfred started writing his PhD in Philosophy and chose the topic of collaboration. Collaboration can be defined as multiple people working on the same problem and exchanging ideas. This is central for the future in order to create knowledge-based ideas.

Alfred soon realized that collaboration is deeply rooted within society and that it needs to be rediscovered, in the light of the new tools that are readily available in this day and age. This idea sent him on a search at the birthplace of modern technology: the Bay Area in California. His idea was to talk to a few practitioners in the field, in the hope of discovering some insights regarding new possibilities for collaboration.

Anybody who creates a system that is too insular has actually created a sure fire way to make him or herself obsolete. This is because the world has shifted from being a society driven by content to one driven by context.  Sadly, the education system is designed to train students for jobs that no longer exist— jobs that were left behind two centuries ago.

The idea of transferring knowledge from one person to another is quite effective in a world that isn’t changing very much, where knowledge remains stable. However we live in a world where the speed of change is faster than our ability to transfer knowledge. Hence textbooks and curricula are not as updated as they should be.

In most schools, innovation is discouraged within the educational system because we place a greater value on memorization and celebrate those students who are able to comply with the rules and function as robots. Daydreaming is frowned upon, highly discouraged, and even medicated and in so doing we end up striving for mediocrity. Within learning, there has to exist a freedom to be creative and inventive without having to remain attached to constraints such as books and programs.

When it comes to research, the incentives are set up in a way that actually discourages people from communicating what they have been working on. Practicing collaboration is not an easy task at all. In fact, it’s possible that it is one of this generation’s biggest challenges.

Any industry that cannot take advantage of technology is possibly doomed because technology generally reduces costs and changes the economics. With time, the old business models just won’t work anymore. Find out more now.

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