Rendering a multi-dimensional problem space as an unfolding collaborative inquiry process

Robin Adams, Richard Aleong, Molly Goldstein, Freddy Solis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study investigates a group working together in an authentic work setting as they collaboratively render a problem space. We employed an existing data set of a group designing for an European automaker. We used a collaborative inquiry paradigm as a lens for investigation. We analysed the dimensions of the problem space the group renders and the collaborative inquiry practices used. The group rendered a multi-dimensional problem space integrating user experience and organizational considerations for realizing user-centred products. We observed collaborative inquiry practices as four modes of evoking ways of knowing and two modes of building coherence. This study offers a new perspective on design as collaborative inquiry – a social process of building coherence to co-construct valid knowledge.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)37-74
Number of pages38
JournalDesign Studies
StatePublished - Jul 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • collaborative design
  • collaborative inquiry
  • framing
  • innovation
  • social design

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Architecture
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Engineering(all)
  • Social Sciences(all)
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Artificial Intelligence


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