The article is dedicated to the problem of forming institutional structures of innovation economy. It is discussed that network transactions have become the leading form of interaction between economic subjects in modern conditions. A collaboration is understood as a form of joint activities for finding creative solutions of innovative tasks. The collaboration of the network’s participants is the cornerstone of the advantages of network transaction. The main institutional characteristics of collaboration are generalized. The need of a special institutional environment as major factor of success of joint work within collaboration is proved. Trust and a number of principles occupy an important place in the institutional environment of collaboration. These principles include participation, transparency, independence and others. Attributes of the mechanism of management of collaboration are considered. They are self-government and project quality. The main benefits of the collaboration participants are associated with the marketing appeal; unique competencies of participants; more full capacity; additional revenues from the sale of intellectual property. The collaborative process based on risk is the likelihood of opportunistic behavior by the participants of the collaboration. Criteria of classification of cooperation in the form of collaboration are offered. It is proposed to study the institutional characteristics of various phenomena with collaborative nature and the financial and economic mechanisms of the collaboration processes as promising directions for further research.