仅仅是接触是改善群体间关系的最佳方式，还是涉及到合作等其他因素?Sherif(1966)发现单独的接触并不足以改善不同组的儿童之间的关系，它只给他们嘲弄和攻击的机会，最终使事情变得更糟。然而，当团队被给予共同的目标时，他们一起工作，敌意骤然减少，而友谊却增加了。这是因为共同的目标和共同的威胁会产生团结，合作的接触可能会团结，而竞争的接触可能会分裂。从Adachi(2016)的研究中可以看出，利用下级目标来改善群体间的关系。他们发现，玩电子游戏时，只需要12分钟的团队合作，就可以提升团队外的态度，改善人际关系。这表明，下级目标，在这种情况下，是一种非常有效的改善群体间关系的方法，因为它花费的时间很少，只需要简单的方法，如一起玩视频游戏。另一种与改善群体间关系有关的沟通方式是常见的外部威胁。例如，Liehr等人(2004年，第431页)在9/11悲剧发生后发现，“我们”一词的使用增加了一倍。这表明，当人们感到有恐怖主义威胁时，他们开始将彼此视为一个整体，而不是“我”对抗“他们”。Kuchenbrandt、Eyssel和Seidel(2013)发现，即使是想象中的群体间合作，在减少焦虑和改善群体间关系方面，也比想象中的接触本身有更好的效果。这表明，在改善关系方面，合作可能是更重要的因素，因为它能产生更好的结果。然而，由于缺乏信任，让人们首先合作可能并不容易。例如，研究发现，人们更多地与团队内部成员而非团队外部成员和陌生人信任和合作，因此，即使他们有共同的下属目标或共同的威胁，也很难在所有群体之间建立凝聚力(Romano, Balliet, Yamagishi & Liu, 2017)。当团队的合作努力失败时，合作也可能无效。例如，Worchel和Norvell(1980)在对大学生的实验中发现，两组人之间的成功合作会导致彼此之间的吸引力增加。然而，当合作努力导致失败，而组不能将此失败归咎于其他变量时，组成员常常将其归咎于外组。这种代罪行为导致了群体间关系的恶化，这说明，要使合作成为改善群体间关系的有效途径，群体必须成功地实现其目标。综上所述，在改善群体间关系方面，合作似乎比单独接触更有效，因为它在减少对群体外成员的焦虑方面取得了更好的效果。尽管如此，合作并不总是有效的，因为与团队外的成员相比，缺乏信任，很难启动。此外，如果合作失败，这可能会导致更糟的集团之间的关系。
Is contact alone the best way of improving intergroup relations or is another factor like cooperation involved? Sherif (1966) found that contact alone was not sufficient enough to improve relations amongst different teams of children, it only gave them opportunities for taunts and attacks which ultimately made things worse. However, when the group were given common goals they worked together, and hostilities plummeted whilst friendships rose. This is down to the fact that common goals and shared threats breed unity, cooperative contact may unite whilst competitive contact may divide. The use of subordinate goals to improve intergroup relations can be seen in research by Adachi (2016). They found that only 12 minutes of intergroup cooperation when playing video games was needed to boost outgroup attitudes and improve relationships. This indicates that subordinate goals, in this case to win, are very effective as a method to improve intergroup relations as it takes very little time and only needs simple methods such as playing video games together. Another method of communication that has been linked to improving intergroup relations are common external threats. For instance, Liehr et al (2004, p.431) found after the tragedy of 9/11, that the use of the word “we” doubled. This showed that when people felt there was a terrorist threat, they started seeing each other collectively as a whole rather than “me” against “them”. Kuchenbrandt, Eyssel and Seidel (2013) found even imagined intergroup cooperation had a better effect than imagined contact on its own at decreasing anxiety and improving intergroup relations. This indicates that cooperation may be the more important factor when it comes to improving relations as it produces better results. However, it may not be easy to get people to cooperate in the first place due to a lack of trust. For instance, it was found that people trust and cooperate more with ingroup members rather than outgroup members and strangers, so therefore it may be harder to build cohesiveness between all groups even when they share subordinate goals or common threats (Romano, Balliet, Yamagishi & Liu, 2017). Cooperation also may not be effective when groups cooperative effort fails. For example, Worchel and Norvell (1980) found in their experiment with university students that successful cooperation between two groups resulted in a boost in attraction for each other. However, when cooperative efforts resulted in failure and groups could not attribute this failure to other variables, group members often blamed the outgroup. This scapegoating caused intergroup relations to worsen, which shows that for cooperation to be an effective way of improving intergroup relations, groups must be successful in achieving their goals. To conclude, cooperation seems to be more effective in improving intergroup relations than contact alone as it achieves better results when decreasing anxiety towards outgroup members. Despite that, cooperation may not always be effective as it can be hard to initiate with outgroup members as there is a lack of trust compared with ingroup members. Also, if the cooperation fails this may lead to worse intergroup relations.