Authors: Rashmi Assudani
Addresses: Department of Management and Entrepreneurship, Xavier University, Cincinnati, Ohio, USA
Abstract: The literature in innovation recognises the tensions and trade-offs that are inherent in the process of innovation. Since innovations primarily occur at cross-disciplinary boundaries, paradoxically these boundaries are also a source of tensions in the process of cross-disciplinary collaboration during the process of innovation. While boundary objects play a crucial role to serve as bridges, we have very limited understanding on how and why boundary objects function as a source of conflict and misunderstandings. In this paper, we try to unpack the potentially conflictual nature of boundary objects by illustrating that boundary objects enable the individuals to realise their frame of analyses, which may compete with another's. We examine a case study of a workplace redesign at a large private university in the Mid-West USA, and examine how these different stakeholders attach different meanings, and therefore contribute to the tensions of the new workplace design. Findings offer implications for governing the innovation process.
Keywords: innovation; space; frames of analysis; boundary objects.
International Journal of Work Innovation, 2017 Vol.2 No.2/3, pp.159 - 171
Received: 14 Nov 2015
Accepted: 16 Dec 2016
Published online: 20 Apr 2018 *