Title: A study of cognitive synchronisation in distant mediated design through design artefacts

Authors: German Alonso Ruiz-Dominguez, Jean-Francois Boujut

Addresses: Instituto technologico de Hermosillo, Ave. Tecnologico S/N, 83170 Colonia Sahuaro, Mexico. ' G-SCOP, Grenoble Institute of Technology, 46, Av. Felix Viallet, 38031 Grenoble Cedex, France

Abstract: Today, collaboration among design teams must be achieved across time and geographical constraints in addition to the usual problems associated with cognitive distance. In this paper, we propose a model mainly based on the concept of design intermediary object (DIO) that takes into account the collective dimension of the cognitive process of geographically remote designers. This model has been used for characterising the cognitive synchronisation mechanisms involved in a distributed collective design process. More precisely the analysis of two design protocols highlight a specific |sequential effect| in distributed design situations where video facilities are poor or missing. We suggest that cognitive synchronisation is mainly affected by both distances and therefore there is a need to support better this process as it is a major performance factor in distributed teams.

Keywords: cognitive synchronisation; collaborative design; design artefacts; distributed design; engineering design; mediated design; design intermediary object; design support.

DOI: 10.1504/JDR.2008.020855

Journal of Design Research, 2008 Vol.7 No.2, pp.136 - 154

Available online: 17 Oct 2008 *

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