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Coordinative Artifacts in Architectural Practice

K. Schmidt and I. Wagner

Reference & Publication Year
COOP 2002: Fifth International Conference on the Design Of Cooperative Systems, Sophia Antipolis, Saint Raphaƫl, France, 4-7 June 2002, IOS Press,
Amsterdam etc., 2002

In this paper we apply the framework of Cook and Brown (1999) to gain a broader perspective
on the role of IT in organizational knowledge creation and use. The framework of Cook and
Brown suggests that knowledge, as something people possess, and knowing, as the epistemic
work done in action, are both very relevant, interrelated and mutually enabling aspects of the
organizational knowledge processes. However it seems as it the research on IT in knowledge
management has been primarily concerned with knowledge. We argue that there is a need for
studying the work practices in a socio-technical perspective taking the interconnected
relationship between knowledge and knowing into account. We explore the role of IT in
knowledge processes by studying three different practices. These practices are a pre-defense of
a Ph.D. dissertation using a video conferencing system in the area of geophysics, a
pharmaceutical development process and a practice of system testing in the telecommunication
industry. Through the analysis we are showing that IT is an integrated part of those practices
and IT can take on at least three different and intertwined types of role which are mediating
communication, repository for knowledge and performing a process.

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