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Paper info: The network co-creation journey over time and space. The experience of a lighting designer


The network co-creation journey over time and space. The experience of a lighting designer


Thomas O’Toole,
Andrea Perna
Uppsala University
Andrea Perna ,
Enrico Baraldi
Uppsala University
Enrico Baraldi and Gian Luca Gregori

Place of Publication

The paper was published at the 34th IMP-conference in Marseille, France in 2018.


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This paper deals with the evolution of the co-creation journey of a customized technology with the presence of different types of collaboration: more particularly, we want to shed more light on what are the consequences and implications for the collaboration and the co-creation process of such technology when it stretches along different business networks in time and space. We analyze the case study of a new product which has been developed by a number of different actors and in different forms over time. The process from the discussion of the initial idea up to the first sale of the technology took almost three years. The new product called Porotex represents a new type of lamp initially developed by two companies, namely Antrox – a small lighting designer – and NelDesign – a micro company which develops and produces small custom-made furniture. The basic product evolved through phases as it took shape in interaction via its developers and other actors’ engagement work: the ‘last’ phase concerning the installation of the technology has never been done before. The initial phase was faced by the two aforementioned companies, whilst the next development up to the installation and commercialization of the technology occurred in different settings and involved other parties. The entire process has been affected by different local networks which put heterogeneous actors in contact with each other. Our research questions are formulated as follows: (1) How does the co-creation process unfold across different business networks? (2) What are the collaborative processes which may affect the co-creation journey from an interactive perspective? (What are the overall effects of the co-creation journey on the different forms of collaboration?) Methodologically we applied a single case study strategy: data has been collected in two different ways. In addition to semi-structured interviews, the authors obtained access to all e- mails exchanged between the actors involved in the process. Combining interview data with e-mails facilitated a more fine-grained understanding of the research question than would using interviews solely. The paper’s main contribution is expected to deal with the understanding of how the co-creation process takes shape by crossing different business networks which have an impact on the collaboration.