This study applied interorganizational collaborations (ICs) in a violence reduction context.
This study introduces relational coordination to interorganizational collaborations (ICs) aimed at reducing gang and youth violence through a quasi-experimental design in which two sites received relational coordination interventions and two did not. Significant, positive changes were seen in one intervention site from baseline to end. In the other intervention site, initial positive changes were eroded by the end of the second year. No significant positive effects were demonstrated in comparison sites. Sites were assessed on the degree to which IC coordination and communication was improved in four rounds of surveys over a two year period. Qualitative analysis shed light on why differences occurred, which were due in large part to structural changes that included codification of practices and the effective use of boundary spanners. A discussion of relational coordination utilization for strengthening ICs in diverse, collaborative contexts is presented. IC is a widely used and valued approach to tackling societal challenges. Effective communication and coordination are difficult to achieve within ICs, yet critical to the attainment of shared goals. Relational coordination is a conceptual framework with analytical tools that can assist in overcoming collaboration shortcomings. (Published Abstract Provided)