Relational Coordination Research Collaborative

We are noticing a couple of interesting trends. People are increasingly using relational coordination to understand and improve how organizations coordinate with each other across boundaries to achieve a common goal, such as community health and wellness, or infrastructure development, or equitable and efficient supply chains. Join us for the September and October RC Cafes to explore this topic!

People are also increasingly using relational coordination to understand and improve learning outcomes, from K-12, to higher education, to graduate medical education. September’s Research Webinar was Organizing For Student Success: A Proposal For Relational Coordination In Higher Education – see below for a recording if you missed it, and join us later this semester when we explore this topic from another perspective.

I also had the privilege last week of sharing about relational coordination at a collaborative meeting of 8 health systems from around the United States, hosted by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education. The focus on RC in education is exciting because it not only has the potential to improve student outcomes – it also has the potential to improve outcomes for the organizations that hire these students – and for the patients, clients and populations they serve!

These topics – and more – will be featured at the upcoming Roundtable in late October in lovely Copenhagen, where we will be hosted by our Scandinavian RCRC partners. Already registration is the largest and most internationally diverse we have ever seen for the Roundtable. And there is still room for another 21 participants – so sign up by end of September if you are hoping to participate, and if you want to experience hygge for yourself!

– Jody

Building Relational Coordination Across Organizational Boundaries
RC Cafe – Thursday, September 28th at 10:00 am ET

Increasingly, work is carried out through multi-stakeholder supply chains and partnerships rather than within single organizations. Relational coordination is known to add value across functions, and it is also expected to add value across organizations. And yet our understanding of relational coordination across organizations is insufficient. Join Dana Minbaeva (Copenhagen Business School) and Joel Cutcher Gershenfeld (Brandeis University) who have expertise to share on this topic. Dana will speak about the challenge of coordinating supply chain partners, and Joel will discuss the challenge of coordinating Fab Lab capabilities at the community level. Their remarks will be followed by a lively conversation with the whole group. If you are an RCRC partner, we hope that you will join us! If you are interested in partnership, please click here.

Register for this Cafe

   RCRC Partner Updates

New Partners
Janet Steinkamp, Senior Consultant/Owner, Health Systems Development, LLC and PhD Student, Grand Canyon University

Sasha Albert, PhD Student, Brandeis University

Pallavi Gupta, Masters in International Development Candidate, Brandeis University

Dusan Stojicic, MA/MS Candidate, Brandeis University

Sarah Hean, COLAB Coordinator/Principal Investigator, Bournemouth University, School of Health and Social Care

Congratulations to Satam Almutairi, PhD Candidate, Dublin City University, on the birth of his son Tannin Almutairi!


Jeff Grim (University of Michigan) presented Organizing For Student Success: A Proposal For Relational Coordination In Higher Education, in the September RCRC Research Webinar. The discussant was Susan Gershenfeld of Brandeis University. A recording of this webinar is available to partners on the RCRC website here.

7th Annual RCRC Roundtable
Creating Change Through Trust Based Relationships
in Copenhagen October 19 & 20

Keynote Speakers
Dr. Michele Williams, University of Iowa (in person)
Dr. Edgar Schein, MIT Sloan School of Management (virtually)

Click Here to Register and Learn More

RC Intervention Training Improving Work Processes with Relational Coordination

In Copenhagen October 17 & 18
Led by Dr. Tony Suchman and Soren Bjerregaard Kjaer

This advanced workshop will help you learn how to use the Relational Coordination Survey in interventions to improve work processes and collaboration across the continuum from small co-located work groups to virtual teams to whole organizations and inter-organizational consortia. If you are an organizational leader or an internal or external consultant and want to take your understanding of RC to a higher level,we invite you to join us. This program will also help you prepare for RC Certification.

Learn More About This Training or Register

Upcoming Events


September 28 at 10:00 ET: RC Cafe – Building Relational Coordination Across Organizational Boundaries with Joel Cutcher Gershenfeld (Brandeis University) and Dana Minbaeva (Copenhagen Business School).
October 5 at 10:30 ET: RCRC Research Webinar – Factors and Processes Underlying Increases of Relational Coordination in Task-Coordinating Groups. Presented by Jim Best (Saybrook University) with discussant John Paul Stephens (Case Western Reserve University, Weatherhead School of Management).

October 17-18RC Intervention Training in Copenhagen. See above for details.
October 19-20: 7th Annual RCRC Roundtable in CopenhagenSee above or here for details. 
October 26 at 10:00 am ETRC Cafe – Building RC for Community Health and Wellness – A New Frontier with Sally Retecki (CareOregon) and Sally Kraft (Population Health, Dartmouth Hitchcock).
November 15-18: 2017 American Society of Criminology Meeting in Philadelphia, PA – presentation by Lauren Hajjar, RCRC Director of Research (Brandeis University), Brenda Bond (Suffolk University) and Chip Coldren (CNA).
November 2017 – May 2018: Leading Organizations to Health – Organizational change initiatives succeed or fail based on the quality of relationships. Relational problems have been cited as the single biggest obstacle to quality improvement projects. Yet most leaders of change projects are not well-prepared for the relational dimension of their work; their training has typically focused on technical analytic tools and control-oriented rather than relational mindsets. As a result, performance suffers.To address this gap we created Leading Organizations to Health, a 7-month institute on leading organizational change for senior and mid-level healthcare leaders. The next cohort begins in November 2017. For more information, please visit here. The institute is led by Tony Suchman of Relationship Centered Healthcare and Diane Rawlins of InsideOut Consulting.
December 7-9, 2017, February 1-3, 2018, April 12-14, 2018: Rediscovering the Heart of Health Care: A Courage to Lead Retreat Series in Island Wood – Seattle, WA. Facilitators are Richard Shugerman and RCRC Partner Diane RawlinsClick here to learn more, register and download the brochure.
Next Year
April 1, 2018: Co-Lead Net call for papers deadline – Relationship-Based Leadership: Current Trends and Future Prospects – for Co-Lead Net.  Learn more here or contact RCRC Partner Erica Foldy (NYU Wagner School).
May 15, 2018 – June 15, 2018 – Co-Lead Net call for papers – Human Relations Special Issue – Collective Dimensions of Leadership: The Challenges of Connecting Theory and MethodLearn more here or contact RCRC Partner Erica Foldy (NYU Wagner School).

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