Path Creation and the Staging of Sociotechnical Spaces for Innovation

Christian Clausen, Yutaka Yoshinaka

    Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperResearchpeer-review


    Managing of innovation and product development is facing increasingly complex chal-lenges of staging design processes across multiple actor-concerns and heterogeneous or-ganisational spaces and sources of knowledge. The processes of transforming knowledge and ideas concerning technology, users and markets, may indeed strengthen the innovative capacity of the organisation in product design. Yet, these very processes may be guided by methods, practices and rules of thumb entrenched in heretofore established and sustained practices within and across the organisational departmental structures and groups. The preconceived notions and artefacts which make up the design processes may, as such, be construed as being part and parcel of how knowledge translates and is translated into the concrete, distributed practices of the organisation. The paper takes on this problematic as an issue in terms of the path dependent, and per-haps for this reason, obdurate, nature of knowledge processes, bearing influence upon mat-ters of relevance and coordination within the organisational context. Through the meta-phorical notion of sociotechnical spaces, the paper addresses the inclusion and exclusion of content and players, as being mediated through the translation of concerns and knowl-edge from internal and external sources through such organisational practices, and how particular modes of organising influence the ‘design space.’ Socio-technical space is elaborated as being an occasioning as well as a result of sociotechnical choices and proc-esses, and points to the possibility of staging, ordering and localising the delimitations and openings of change processes in an otherwise distributed framework focusing on interven-tion in and through design. The paper pursues the issue of path dependence and creation, through the role of socio-material as well as discursive practices dealing with design processes within the organisa-tion, which frame and render particular spaces open to management and to the coordina-tion for knowledge flows and ideas in early phases of product development. In this light, the facilitation of particular views and combinations of knowledge and insight may lead to an increased awareness on the selective and agential nature of path creation, and how the content of ideas and actors may be subject to managing in technology design, implementa-tion and change.
    Original languageEnglish
    Publication date2006
    Publication statusPublished - 2006
    EventThe European Institute for Advanced Studies in Management - Berlin, Germany
    Duration: 1 Jan 2007 → …


    ConferenceThe European Institute for Advanced Studies in Management
    Period01/01/2007 → …


    • distributed agency
    • staging
    • obduracy
    • Design space
    • inclusion/exclusion


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