The Role of Objects in the Constitution of Collaborative Spaces

Angelos Balatsas-Lekkas, Yutaka Yoshinaka

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference article in proceedingsScientificpeer-review

44 Downloads (Pure)


This paper examines collaborative processes involving users and product development practitioners, in virtual co-creative spaces. Qualifications of roles are entailed in and through the mediation of objects, as they serve part and parcel of the coming-into-being of the collaboration. By focusing on the role played by objects in collaborative spaces, more specifically an Internet-based forum established by a medical device manufacturer for users of its products, the paper makes a threefold argument concerning the active role played by objects in collaborative processes: 1) the premises for user involvement in such spaces is subject to behind-the-scenes qualification processes directed at particular user configurations; 2) virtual spaces are being re-configured by users’ and practitioners’ interactions through diverse references of objects; and 3) users and practitioners qualify the content of these spaces by negotiating the meaning of the objects that both engage. Thus, such collaborative processes bear with them potential trade-offs and inherent tensions by way of boundary drawings and reordering of roles, articulated through qualification.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCo-create 2013: the Boundary-Crossing Conference on Co-Design in Innovation
PublisherAalto University
Number of pages484
ISBN (Print)978-952-60-5236-6
Publication statusPublished - 2013
MoE publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
EventCo-Create 2013: the Boundary-Crossing Conference on Co-Design in Innovation - Espoo, Finland
Duration: 16 Jun 201319 Jun 2013

Publication series

SeriesAalto University Publication Series Science + Technology


ConferenceCo-Create 2013


  • Collaborative spaces
  • user involvement
  • re-configuration
  • boundary objects
  • qualification


Dive into the research topics of 'The Role of Objects in the Constitution of Collaborative Spaces'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this