Sharing instrumentation and valuing experimental activities
Inter-organisational articulation work between two technological platforms
AbstractThis article explores some of the many tensions that emerge from the sharing of scientific instrumentation by focusing on technological platforms –i.e. sociotechnical devices whose aim is to organise the sharing of experimentation devices among several research groups or institutions. It analyses the case of a merging process between two platforms that belong to the same research and innovation campus with the concept of “articulation work” (Fujimura, 1987). In the present case, the articulation work is produced not only between the three levels that are mentioned by Joan Fujimura (experimental activities, the laboratory, and the social world), but also implies an inter-organisational level. Taking this fourth level into account is particularly useful in order to shed light on the differences of professional and institutional cultures between the various protagonists of both platforms –especially concerning, in the present case study, the way of valuing the pricing and accounting rules.
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