Wanda Orlikowski

Wanda Orlikowski developed a typology of boundary practices, focusing on the condition of employees of a given organisation to manage the multiple boundaries through which they perform their distributed product development work.

Orlikowski’s typology identifies five practices, which may include a set of activities connected with a process of knowing.

The five practices are:

  • Sharing identity, allowing participants in feeling to be part of a common enterprise
  • Face-to-face interaction, allowing participants to create trust-based relationships
  • Aligning efforts, allowing participants to coordinate across time and space
  • Learning by doing, allowing participants to develop their capabilities in managing the PE process and its contents
  • Supporting participation, allowing participants to manage the differences among them in terms of interests, knowledge and viewpoints.

The following table summarised the Orlikowski’s approach. Some changes have been introduced to adapt it to the context of public engagement in science and technology.

Practice Activities comprising the practice Knowing constituted in the practice
1. Sharing identity
  • Engaging in common training and socialisation
  • Using common orientation to do development work
  • Identifying with the PE process
Knowing the PE process
2. Interacting face-to-face
  • Gaining trust, respect, credibility and commitment
  • Sharing information
  • Building and sustaining social networks
Knowing the players in the game
3. Aligning effort
  • Using common models, methods and metrics
  • Using common standard procedures
Knowing how to coordinate across time and space
4. Learning by doing
  • Investing in individual development
  • Rewarding effort
Knowing how to develop PE capabilities
5. Supporting part-icipation
  • Involving participants in decision making processes
  • Sharing knowledge and viewpoints
Knowing how to innovate

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