Perceived Culture of Networked Knowledge Hubs

DS 94: Proceedings of the Design Society: 22nd International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED19)

Year: 2019
Editor: Wartzack, Sandro; Schleich, Benjamin; Gon
Author: Mattila, Pauliina (2); van der Marel, Floris (1); Mikkonen, Maria (1)
Series: ICED
Institution: Aalto University
Section: Innovation engineering
DOI number:
ISSN: 2220-4342


While the construction of knowledge hubs has gained recent traction, little is known on how networked actors perceive their collective culture. Authors looked at the topic through a single case study, the Design Factory Global Network, a network of 24 autonomous yet connected hubs for passion-based co-creation in an educational setting. Data was collected via questionnaires, asking 1) to describe their Design Factory in three distinct, words, 2) explicate these with exemplary stories, and 3) express future development wishes. 98 stories and future wishes were shared by representatives from 15 Design Factories. Excerpts reflecting cultural levels (attitudes, norms, manifestations) were identified and made sense of by looking at which level of stakeholder relationship (internal, host, network, wider environment) they targeted. 78 attitudes, 114 norms and 95 manifestations were mentioned, mostly targeting the internal community and the host levels. Authors draw some practical implications for each of the identified level or relationship, contributing to the knowledge of the creation and development of such innovation hubs. In addition, further research directions are proposed.

Keywords: Design education, Organizational processes, Open innovation, Collaborative design, Knowledge hub


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