verb col·lab·o·rate \ kə-ˈla-bə-ˌrāt \
Updated on: 10 Nov 2017

Definition of collaborate

collaborated; collaborating
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.


play \kə-ˌla-bə-ˈrā-shən\ noun


play \kə-ˈla-bə-ˌrā-tiv, -b(ə-)rə-\ adjective or noun


play \kə-ˈla-bə-ˌrā-tiv-lē, -b(ə-)rə-\ adverb


play \kə-ˈla-bə-ˌrā-tər\ noun

collaborate was our Word of the Day on 05/15/2011. Hear the podcast!

Examples of collaborate in a Sentence

  1. The two companies agreed to collaborate.

  2. He was suspected of collaborating with the occupying army.

Recent Examples of collaborate from the Web

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.

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.

Origin and Etymology of collaborate

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

collaborate Synonyms

COLLABORATE Defined for English Language Learners



Definition of collaborate for English Language Learners

  • : to work with another person or group in order to achieve or do something

  • : to give help to an enemy who has invaded your country during a war

COLLABORATE Defined for Kids


verb col·lab·o·rate \ kə-ˈla-bə-ˌrāt \

Definition of collaborate for Students

collaborated; collaborating
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

Law Dictionary


intransitive verb col·lab·o·rate \ kə-ˈla-bə-ˌrāt \

legal Definition of collaborate

collaborated; collaborating
:to work jointly with others in some endeavor

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