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User-Led Innovation in Call Center Knowledge Work

IFIP International Federation for Information Processing
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  • Communication


So called knowledge work is seen as integral to post-industrial society and, for some, information and communications technologies (ICTs) are critical enablers of the associated practices. Many still propose the technologically deterministic route of rolling out ICTs and expecting that users will, and indeed can, download what they know into a system that can then be used in a number of ways. This approach is usually underpinned by the predominant assumption that the system will be developed by one group (developers) and used by another group (users). In this paper, we report on an exploratory case study of the enactment of ICT supported knowledge work in a human resources contact center which illustrates the negotiable boundary between the developer and user in local level innovation processes. Drawing upon ideas from the social shaping of technology, we examine how discussions regarding producer-user relations in innovation processes require a degree of greater sophistication as we show how users often develop (or produce) technologies and work practices in situ in this case, to enable knowledge work practices and contribute to the project of constructing the knowledge component of professional identity. Much has been made of contextualizing the user; further work is required to contextualize the developer as a user and understand the social actors in ICT innovation environments who straddle both domains. Full Text at Springer, may require registration or fee

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