Monday, September 26, 2011

Collaborative Writing in the Real World


Question: What are some causes of failure in collaborative writing?

Answer/Quote: “This ethnographic study identifies and analyzes 16 factors that influenced a largely unsuccessful collaborative writing process in a nonacademic setting, the 77-day production of a two-page executive letter of an annual report.” P. 173.

Quote: “While previous studies have focused upon successful collaborations, this one focuses on important drawbacks of peer and hierarchical editing in a real-world context.” P. 173.

Quote: “Yet during the editing process, subordinates had made important suggestions that would have improved the end-product, including explaining statistics and candidly stating underwriting and tax problems. This approach very probably would have made policy holders more open to rate increases. But subordinates were not in a position to contest the approved version. Thus the hierarchical nature of the company eliminated divergent viewpoints that could have improved the letter considerably.” P. 187.

Quote: “Most importantly, members of student and professional writing groups need to be fully aware that collaboration is much more than writers putting words on paper in the right syntactical and denotative order.  They must know that group writing is a political process involving power and conflict stemming both from the nature of groups and from the nature of language. The better their techniques of collaboration, the better the odds that power and conflict will be channeled toward constructive ends.” P. 200.

Title: “A Bakhtinian Exploration of Factors Affecting the Collaborative Writing of an Executive Letter of an Annual Report.” GA Cross. Research in the Teaching of English (May 1990), 173-203.

No comments: