Behind the steady stream of new products, technologies, systems and services in our modern societies there is prolonged and complicated battle around the role of users. How should designers get to know the users' interests and needs? Who should speak for the users? How may designers collaborate with users and in what ways may users take innovation into their own hands?The New Production of Users
offers a rare overview of these issues. It traces the history of designer-user relations from the era of mass production to the present days. Its focus lies in elaborating the currently emerging strategies and approaches to user involvement in business and citizen contexts. It analyses the challenges in the practical collaborations between designers and users, and it investigates a number of cases, where groups of users collectively took charge of innovation.
In addition to a number of new case studies, the book provides a thorough account of theories of user involvement as well as and offers further developments to these theories. As a part of this, the book relates to the wide spectrum of fields currently associated with user involvement, such as user-centered design, participatory design, user innovation, open source software, cocreation and peer production.
Exploring the nexus between users and designers, between efforts to democratize innovation and to mobilize users for commercial purposes, this multi-disciplinary book will be of great interest to academics, policy makers and practitioners in fields such as Innovation Studies, Innovation Policy, Science and Technology Studies, Cultural Studies, Consumption studies, Marketing, e-commerce, Media Studies as well as Design research.