Skip to Content
Department of Premier and Cabinet


In practice there are many challenges associated with collaboration across government. The absence of relationships across government, territorial attitudes and the focus on short term delivery may all hinder inter-agency collaboration.[1]

Additional challenges to inter-agency collaboration may include:

  • uncertainty around who will take responsibility for outcomes;
  • difficulty in finding the right people to work with;
  • a traditionally risk adverse culture;
  • objectives relating to personal achievement, not collaborative achievement;
  • uncertainty as to the tangible benefits to each party;
  • administrative barriers in obtaining sign off to work collaboratively;
  • tight timeframes; and
  • budgetary considerations[2]
Governing through collaboration throws out many challenges to all players in almost all policy fields; it poses challenges but also opens the possibility of truly sustained improvements in the quality of policy development and implementation and service delivery.[3]

[1] Emsile, C, Gordon, M, 2008, Collaborative working across Government, p 13.

[2] Ibid, p 13.

[3] Wanna, J “Collaborative government: meanings, dimensions, drivers and outcomes” in O’Flynn J and Wanna J (Eds), 2008, Collaborative Governance: A new era of public policy in Australia, p 11.

« Collaborative structuresConclusion »