col·​lab·​o·​rate | \ kə-ˈla-bə-ˌrāt How to pronounce collaborate (audio) \
collaborated; collaborating

Definition of collaborate

intransitive verb

1 : to work jointly with others or together especially in an intellectual endeavor An international team of scientists collaborated on the study.
2 : to cooperate with or willingly assist an enemy of one's country and especially an occupying force suspected of collaborating with the enemy
3 : to cooperate with an agency or instrumentality with which one is not immediately connected The two schools collaborate on library services.

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Other Words from collaborate

collaboration \ kə-​ˌla-​bə-​ˈrā-​shən How to pronounce collaborate (audio) \ noun
collaborative \ kə-​ˈla-​bə-​ˌrā-​tiv , -​b(ə-​)rə-​ How to pronounce collaborate (audio) \ adjective or noun
collaboratively \ kə-​ˈla-​bə-​ˌrā-​tiv-​lē How to pronounce collaborate (audio) , -​b(ə-​)rə-​ \ adverb

Did You Know?

The Latin prefix com-, meaning "with, together, or jointly," is a bit of a chameleon - it has a tricky habit of changing its appearance depending on what it's next to. If the word it precedes begins with "l," "com-" becomes "col-." In the case of collaborate, com- teamed up with laborare ("to labor") to form Late Latin collaborare ("to labor together"). Colleague, collect, and collide are a few more examples of the "com-" to "col-" transformation. Other descendants of laborare in English include elaborate,- _laboratory, and labor itself.

Examples of collaborate in a Sentence

The two companies agreed to collaborate. He was suspected of collaborating with the occupying army.
Recent Examples on the Web Scarcity plus celebrity have been a winning combination for Adidas, which has been leveraging non-athlete stars like Pharrell Williams and Kanye West to collaborate on limited-release brands. Chauncey Alcorn, CNN, "Beyoncé's much-hyped 'Icy Park' Adidas apparel is finally here," 19 Feb. 2021 Getting groups like the NRA and ACLU to collaborate on governing a national gun registry may seem truly outlandish. Lily Hay Newman, Wired, "This Encrypted Gun Registry Might Bridge a Partisan Divide," 29 Jan. 2021 Its mostly online creation allowed contributors from all over the country, many of them young and apparently stuck in their parents’ basements, to collaborate with old hands. New York Times, "‘Ratatouille’ Review: What’s Small and Hairy With Big Dreams?," 3 Jan. 2021 Yemi Alade, better known as Mama Africa, is as perfect a candidate to collaborate with for ESSENCE’s official Christmakwanzakah Playlist. Kevin L. Clark, Essence, "Yemi Alade Presents Essence‘s Official Christmakwanzakah Playlist," 25 Dec. 2020 Many found ways to collaborate with bandmates without being in the same room, and some even learned to host virtual shows to reach new audiences. Anne Nickoloff, cleveland, "Listen Local: 48 new music releases from Cleveland acts in 2020," 21 Dec. 2020 It's been over five years now since Nintendo first announced plans to collaborate with Universal Studios on a real-world theme park. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "AR Mario Kart anchors Universal’s Super Nintendo World in February," 30 Nov. 2020 As a beauty writer and editor, Janell had her pick of who to collaborate with on her wedding-day hair and makeup. Shira Savada, Harper's BAZAAR, "This Couple Replanned, Relocated, Downsized, and Rescheduled Their Wedding—in Just Three Months," 30 Nov. 2020 On Sunday, the budding rock star from Ipswich, England, declared victory over Grohl once and for all — in the most epic way possible, of course — and expressed her desire to collaborate with the former Nirvana drummer on a future project. Christi Carras, Los Angeles Times, "With epic flare, Nandi Bushell declares victory over Dave Grohl in drum battle," 23 Nov. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'collaborate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of collaborate

1871, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for collaborate

Late Latin collaboratus, past participle of collaborare to labor together, from Latin com- + laborare to labor — more at labor

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Time Traveler for collaborate

Time Traveler

The first known use of collaborate was in 1871

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Statistics for collaborate

Last Updated

27 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Collaborate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for collaborate



English Language Learners Definition of collaborate

: to work with another person or group in order to achieve or do something
disapproving : to give help to an enemy who has invaded your country during a war


col·​lab·​o·​rate | \ kə-ˈla-bə-ˌrāt How to pronounce collaborate (audio) \
collaborated; collaborating

Kids Definition of collaborate

1 : to work with others (as in writing a book)
2 : to cooperate with an enemy force that has taken over a person's country


intransitive verb
col·​lab·​o·​rate | \ kə-ˈla-bə-ˌrāt How to pronounce collaborate (audio) \
collaborated; collaborating

Legal Definition of collaborate

: to work jointly with others in some endeavor

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