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

Essential Meaning of collaborate

1 : to work with another person or group in order to achieve or do something The two companies agreed to collaborate.
2 disapproving : to give help to an enemy who has invaded your country during a war He was suspected of collaborating with the occupying army.

Full 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.

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 The Lakewood and Denver departments will collaborate on the investigation, along with a specialized team that probes police shootings, Romero said. Washington Post, 28 Dec. 2021 In 1950 Hofmann was invited to collaborate in the making of a modernist site in the coastal town of Chimbote, Peru. Chadd Scott, Forbes, 21 Dec. 2021 Here, Cucuzzo and his team of 10 product designers, who are mechanical and electrical engineers on both home and automotive audio projects, collaborate in an open office that promotes idea sharing and invention. Robert Ross, Robb Report, 17 Dec. 2021 And homeowners must collaborate with contractors about every new arrival, delay and notification. Joanne Cleaver,, 26 Nov. 2021 Rivian and Ford decided to go their separate ways rather than collaborate on future electric vehicles, backing away from an earlier strategic pact that led to a multibillion-dollar windfall for Ford. James Willhite, WSJ, 22 Nov. 2021 Why collaborate with Christian musicians to help tell the Christmas story? The Salt Lake Tribune, 19 Nov. 2021 Mazda will collaborate with Toyota on the upcoming hybrid version of the 2023 CX-50 crossover, as vehicle dynamics engineer Dave Coleman confirmed that the SUV's gas-electric drivetrain will come from Toyota. Joey Capparella, Car and Driver, 16 Nov. 2021 Composer Stephen Schwartz, who penned the original music and lyrics, and Winnie Holzman, who wrote the dialogue, will collaborate on the screenplay, while three-time Oscar nominee Marc Platt will produce. Radhika Seth, Vogue, 5 Nov. 2021

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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Last Updated

10 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Collaborate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for collaborate


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

More from Merriam-Webster on collaborate

Nglish: Translation of collaborate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of collaborate for Arabic Speakers


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