this is a thesis
melancedoing ethnography
on collaborationimage courtesy of jp bichard
. architecture and design // design thinking & pattern bldg. coding // releasing & iterating beta versions. hacking // dis...
open designintegrates the seemingly paradoxicalcooperative, playful and socialcombines analytical and imaginativeappreciat...
deep thinkeruber creativenetworkerbroad skillsdeepknowledgecatalystengineerproducercreativity recruitment
creativity is emergentcreativity as remixutilizing uncertaintydeparts from top down planningbeyond quantitative measuremen...
balance extroverts & introverts
hustle is a musclecreative productivity rulesgenerating opportunities leadsproductive excess sucks
}share goals
autonomy, passion and purpose
open ownershipfranchiseincubatespin off
fundamentalsincomplete by designnew relevance of attributionyields autonomy and affectleveraging mutual benefitfoster a ci...
new social contractsNever doubt that a small group ofthoughtful, committed citizens canchange the world; indeed, its theon...
// thank you!my name is @elejansenand I wanted to say this too butI ran out of time.creativity + discipline = limitationcr...
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Diy 130427 ele jansen_collaboration


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These are slides I made for a talk at diy days New York City 2013. I'm walking through my PhD approach, doing ethnography on open design, using pattern language to detect dynamics and relationships between collaborating creatives. With a look towards power I discuss what it means to balance introvert and extrovert. Suggesting new forms of work organization, I conclude listing collaboration fundamentals, suggesting that my observations indicate the need for new social contracts.

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  • BREATH anyone short on oxygen?Hi my name is Ele Jansen. I’m German. I live in Sydney, Australia. And I play ARGs for a living.Just that I call it ethnography.
  • ETHNOGRAPHY USED TO LOOK LIKE THIS. It basically means to immerse into a FOREIGN TRIBE to study how they do things and how they understand he world.An ethnographer becomes one of the tribeto feel what it feels like for them.I studied different maker collectives in Europe, Australia and worked closely with LANCE WEILER and the REBOOT COLLECTIVE in the US. So this would be me (CLICK) and this would be lance (CLICK). Just kidding, clearly I’m not male. ;)Ethnography is a set of tools developed in the field of anthro. And in my subsection - media anthropologist - the onus lies onhow humans use their tool and technology to evolve from past states. Most importantly: collaboration inevitable for is creative producers because of today’s general MULTIPLICITY AND VASTNESS.
  • My quest is to find out how creative producers collaborate and how that relates to social dynamics and society at large. Understanding collaboration is relevant for both economy and society, because we see more and more creatives pulling out of the corporate world to pursue an entrepreneurial path or start a business with others.
  • In order to understand how things correlate, I look for patterns in behaviour, rhetoric and rules.Imagine each tile representing a pattern, you can call it a method or principle. CLICK: they are related or have overlapsCLICK Together they make up a VALUE SYSTEM. CLICK For example, If one tile is “reach goal” then this affects “failure” differently, depending on whether failure is seen as virtue for the sake of learning or a sanctionable mistake. Throughout my talk you will find such patterns, and if you’re keen you can take part in my research by commenting on them with a tweet @elejansenOh by the way this is called “pattern language” for those who would like to know more about it.Looking at these correlations, I can derive larger scale ramifications when I compare it against macrotrends in society. Something that often gets overlooked in its dependency and complexity.OK, let’s start with WHY PRODUCING CREATIVELY REQUIRES COLLABORATION and CREATIVE LEADERSHIP.
  • SIMPLY BECAUSE IT DRAWS ON SUCH A VARIETY OF FIELDS AND METHODS.I’m gonna spare you reading this chart. These are the areas I have observed projects to be comprised of. Left you see the area. Right you see which methods were borrowed.So, gaming, for example, gives great insight into the art of community building.Obviously no one person is all over this stuff. Makes sense to bring experts together and remix their creativity.I’m going to do two things now: First I’m explaining basic principles of open design workshops, like how we facilitate collaboration in them.Then I’m going to ask you to transfer that knowledge to a CO-WORKING level. OK, so first OPEN DESIGN Such as system of paying forward is often frowned upon, because often there is no payment involved. But what I’m going to suggest today might be a way out.First off, don’t think Work-for-hire  the proposition is to join or start a creative collaborative in which everyone has a stake. There are a few conditions that need rethinking in order for that to work. The following recommendations are based on reboot Stories’ practice and are proven elements from all of the above.
  • Who HAD exposure to design thinking?For those who don’t know. BASICALLY A MODEL TO FIND CREATIVE AND WORKABLE SOLUTIONS WITH TEAMSCLICK it draws on people from all areas, even the most unlikely. Think janitors next to architects, next to a policymaker, school kids, business strategist, public housing member, and a high school teacher. … you might even find a porn star can add something beneficial.CLICK draws on colors, objects and reasoning to activate right and left brainie by using playdough and legoto build stuff because that ignites your brain’s creativity.CLICK draws on multiple views and avoids consensus in favor of integrationCLICK it’s critical with a tendency to appreciative inquiry, which means focusing on positive aspects of a condition it addresses human needs, also informed by ethnographyCLICK and it follows steps, which can also be found in business modeling and product development.
  • IN CONTRARY to recruitment according to degree and CV, I observed alternative principles how teams are mixed to ignite collective creativity. I stole these 3 methods from neuroscientist Peter Kruse, IDEO and I the last one I thought up, but it’s obvious and probably everywhere I just havn’t seen it. CLICK So, 1st method: RECRUITING COLLABORATORSAsk for t-shape capacity: top bar of broad skills and deep knowledge (also used by IDEO)Ask for a MANIFESTO and see what their ethos is and if you can align your goalsAsk 5 times why to challenge everyone to go to the depth of their motivationsCLICK 2nd method: Next step IDEA CRYSTALIZATION connect the three brain functions (Peter Kruse): deep thinkeruber creative networker CLICK 3rd method: running the PROJECT consider who is acatalyst (kickstarter)producer (getting things done)engineer (designing process)
  • One of the most important thing with creativity is that it is emergent. Open collaboration accommodates that in two waysCLICK Creativity is constantly evolving through the input of many. As such CREATIVITY IS REMIX, which does away with romantic notions of authorship.CLICK Our surrounding is uncertain, ambiguous and cannot be taken literally. That means to bestturn volatility into a virtue. If multiplicity is utilized, lateral thinking can flourish.This is radically different from how most companies work: CLICKNO 3-5 YEAR PLANS, NO JOB DESCRIPTIONS AND FIXED POSITIONS, NO FOLLOWING A FORMULA, IT’S BASICALLY EXACTLY THE OPPOSITE FROM TOP-DOWN: THE PROCESS IS BOTTOM UP AND SIDEWAYS.CLICKAVOIDS A SET OUTCOME AND IS THUS HARD TO PREDICT AND MEASURE QUANTITATIVELYCLICKEmergence seems leaderless. We believe memes bubble up ON THE WEB, but if we look closer we see that there IS leadership.
  • Emergence favors Extroverts on two levels: in groupwork as well as in public.In groupwork: we can see that those talking most seem to take the lead. There’s no research confirming that groupwork can be balanced. So far, all say that extroverts dominate the scene. In online collaboration: even harder for introverts to be seen if you do only audio skype. If you don’t speak up, you’re not there. So the crucial question seems to be how can we balance them?On a micro-level, we tested different pay and storytelling methods to do so:Ie. balancing quiet time and talking timeswap dominant group members and put extroverts in a new group with a completely different contentThrough role play it’s easy to task extroverts with introvert challenges and vice versaBut we also got to acknowledge the quieter power of introverts. For example, if they are the ones taking notes, their interpretation of what’s been said becomes history.Looking at a social level, for example when show-casing one’s work, there’s a 2nd type of LEADERSHIP that is related to extroversion… it’s leadership by productivity
  • Those who put themselves on the frontlines, who show their efforts generate more opportunities, which automatically puts them in a leadership position. CLICK Visibility is key to attract jobs and funding. To be visible you got to be productive. So, those who blog, tweet, talk etc are more likely to generate opportunities than those who don’t. CLICK So in collectives; is it always one or a few who bring most OPPORTUNITIES? Will they automatically lead? Are we then reinventing the wheel and build hierarchies similar as companies?CLICK Another point is that if everyone creates their own thing, we create a lot of “the same.” Goldsmith professor Scott Lash talks about semantic excess with respect to content we find online. More is produced than we can consume. So if there’s too much of the same, that doesn’t sound very efficient. But what if producers collaborate with shared goals and autonomous projects leading up to that goal?
  • Let me speculate for a moment. Let’s say making largescale change in society requires COLLECTIVE ACTIONCLICKImagine these light bulbs are people in a CO-WORKING SPACE. They know of each other’s goals and efforts and might help each other out occasionally, but still, everyone has their own agenda and overlap is situational.Imagine you are one of those LIGHT BULBS. Your core light is a project you came up withYour radiating light is your talent, which you lend to othersWhile their light helps you and your project grow.CLICKHow about a co-working space that has ONE OVERARCHING GOAL and everyone comes in is an entrepreneur with their own objectives and projects, but each collaborator’s objective is met under a shared goal by LEVERAGING MUTUAL BENEFITThis collective will stand out because synergizing their goals they  alleviate competition leverage superior effectivenessreduce the excessHowever, a model like that means that everyone is autonomous and responsible for their own income.
  • Working with creatives means to acknowledge creative sensitivities comprehensively. Artistic types have the tendency to excel when it’s meaningful to themselves. They will deliver best on their own terms.Which is to say that AUTONOMY is a major motivator to create.CREATIVITY FOLLOWS PASSION AND PURPOSEHowever, When idealism is the driver, it only lasts as long as it serves its purpose. So might have a problem with accountability. Passion can fade, purpose can change. So frequent change of collaborators is inevitable. And thatmightbe good for everyone’s creativity.
  • If everyone is their own entrepreneur, what would be examples of open ownership?CLICK Franchise: IE Jasmine shares a similar ethos as diydays, so she brought the event to Gothenburg, she got funding in Sweden and generated quite some buzz, which gives her leeway to grow her career.CLICK Incubate: the WSLab (a 2 day workshop before diy days) generated a project to narratize the new harbour area. Jasmine has built a team to get this project kickstarted and can generate multiple revenue streams from it. CLICK Spin-off: Working ONLINE with people from different countries has the benefit of merging larger communities and network. It also means having different markets, which allows partners to spin-off own revenue streams from shared assets. (ie when a collective create a process that is creative commons and can be advised elsewhere)To recap the FUNDAMENTALS of open collaboration, it seems to require a whole lot of TRUST
  • CLICK ie Help is not always returned directly.So, Do we need regulations to keep everyone in check? Or do informal sanctions do the trick? (bears some interesting ideas around self-evaluation tools, maybe creepy)CLICKbecause visibility lends power to certain personality types, correct attribution is a major determinant of long-term trust in each other. CAN’T STRESS ENOUGHCLICK being autonomous and self-propelled means everyone has creative freedom. Being affected by either purpose or passion drives this, but it yields volalitity.CLICK nonetheless accountability might be improved when making sure that everyone has their own goals metCLICK To allow collaborators to self-actualize within a project, one has to let go of creative control to leave room for others to step in. Open design means basically to offer an incomplete design that allows for external input and serendipity.CLICK Lastly with a view to resource depletion and entropy: always give more than you take.THIS IS WHERE I COME TO AN END
  • If creative productivity is the leading agent in our future, we must negotiate new social contracts.Knowing the effects of neoliberalism, which has the same traits as yet unregulated co-entrepreneurship, how can we improve upon older economic systems? Also, seeing that certain systems lends power to certain personality types, which is not a matter of ACHIEVEMENT, do we need to reconsider meritocracy? How might we build a goal share mechanism that incorporates such systemic improvements without limiting the freedom of creative expression?I’m a year before submission and certainly there are more questions than answers. If you have thoughts or want to get involved, there are two ways to do this right here and now:Tweet @learndoshare or go to room 403 during lunch. we’re running a booksprint and are open to contributionsSign up to our diy days creative directory to share your goals with others, to find help and help in returnSo use your power. Corporations will listen to your ideas. Imagine a company that becomes truly participatory. Think beyond theco-creation where customers are asked to co-design. This will fade.Now flip your own thinking. Also being customers, you are their stakeholders and you are a creative collective. You suggest a goal and a way to accomplish that goal with a shared purpose.You require creative freedom and you demand that the value cannot be measured in kpi’s or clicks or anticipated roi. Remember collective action: only if everyone is bold enough to claim their value, we can change things we don’t like.Here I have more questions than answers:Does collaboration increase competition?Is competition good? Is it friends with share culture?Or is it at odds with collaboration?Does it lend power to the extrovert and confident? Is that ok?Can we question these values and check the consequences of such paradoxes?
  • Creativity + EXTERNAL discipline = limits creativity Creativity – discipline = chaos defies imagination  Creativity + self-discipline = self-actualization and growth
  • Diy 130427 ele jansen_collaboration

    1. 1. this is a thesis
    2. 2. melancedoing ethnography
    3. 3. on collaborationimage courtesy of jp bichard
    4. 4. failuregoal
    5. 5. . architecture and design // design thinking & pattern bldg. coding // releasing & iterating beta versions. hacking // disruption & disobedience. design // open participation & manuals. biz development // agile mgmt & entrepreneurship. diy culture // tinkering & makerspaces. gaming // mechanics & community building. play // incentives & leveling hierarchies. the arts // collaboration & significant objects. music industry // distribution & revenue streams. peer production // participation & crowdsourcing. tech // platforms & experimentation. education // experiential learning. entertainment // storytelling & affect. storytelling // empathy & dramaturgy. marketing and pr // social reach & revenue streams. positive psychology // ethos & leadership style. jugaad and jua kali // frugal innovation. the commons // mindset & share culture
    6. 6. open designintegrates the seemingly paradoxicalcooperative, playful and socialcombines analytical and imaginativeappreciative and human-centeredsteps: empathy, define, ideate/iterate, test
    7. 7. deep thinkeruber creativenetworkerbroad skillsdeepknowledgecatalystengineerproducercreativity recruitment
    8. 8. creativity is emergentcreativity as remixutilizing uncertaintydeparts from top down planningbeyond quantitative measurementis emergence leaderless?
    9. 9. balance extroverts & introverts
    10. 10. hustle is a musclecreative productivity rulesgenerating opportunities leadsproductive excess sucks
    11. 11. }share goals
    12. 12. autonomy, passion and purpose
    13. 13. open ownershipfranchiseincubatespin off
    14. 14. fundamentalsincomplete by designnew relevance of attributionyields autonomy and affectleveraging mutual benefitfoster a circular trust economyimage courtesy of c russel-rossigive more than you take
    15. 15. new social contractsNever doubt that a small group ofthoughtful, committed citizens canchange the world; indeed, its theonly thing that ever has.Margaret Mead
    16. 16. // thank you!my name is @elejansenand I wanted to say this too butI ran out of time.creativity + discipline = limitationcreativity – discipline = chaoscreativity + selfdiscipline = growth