How the co-creation concept could be applied to a group of different organizations in a modern technology center? Here is presented one form of implementation.
Applying co-creation culture in a modern technology center
Technology centers are often comprised of organizations sharing some fundamental common nominator. The nominator can be for example automotive industry, aerospace industry, micro technology etc.
Organizations can be a companies or non-profitable institutions, e.g. university. Organizations can also belong to a single institution or company.
Following examples illustrate possible ways to apply co-creation principles is a modern technology center. The goal is to enable serendipitous encounters, increase knowledge sharing and motivation and create motion.
In the example an imaginary technology center comprises of companies, universities and research institutions
Direct knowledge sharing
The goal is to bring the projects and events holding potential for common interest to the same space.
Openness of the projects and events is profound. Participation to the projects over the organization borders provides direct knowledge sharing.
The role of the organization depends on the project. Organization may play different roles in different projects.
Diverse projects increase diverse knowledge and diverse ideas
Project and event forming examples
Movement is essential in the co-creation space. In order to have serendipitous encounters and knowledge sharing the must projects and events. Here are some project and event forming examples. Co-create creation projects and events hold common interest. Project participants can be from different organization, within one organization or outside of the organizations of the technology center. The roles of the participants depends on the project.
Here is an example how open project could be formed in a multi-organizational co-creation environment
Here is an example how internal project could be formed in a multi-organizational co-creation environment
Here is an example how open event could be formed in a multi-organizational co-creation environment
Knowledge sharing in multiple projects environment
Several running projects and events increases likelihood for serendipitous encounters and knowledge sharing. Allowing fully open projects and events the knowledge transfer occurs not only by serendipitous encounters but also directly by participating in the projects.
Co-creation proposes new aspects to the traditional meaning about productivity and efficiency in technology industry. It challenges conventional thinking about the co-operation by introducing elements like serendipitous encounters, informal nature, talking to strangers, transparent activity and diversity. Thus, implementation of multi-organizational co-creation space requires new practices.
“Master of co-creation”
There are several different models on how to operate the space and the operations should be tailored to fit the needs of organizations that take part in the co-creation and the projects that are tackled in the co-creation space. Some organizations might already be familiar with co-creation but some might not generally have enough knowledge on what it is. For these reasons a service that trains people about co-creation might be very important to some organizations while for others it would be a waste of resources.
What we suggest for the daily operations of the co-creation space would be to always have a concierge or similar “master of co-creation” service to always be part of the co-creation space. Additional services and needs could be sourced from the concierge or ordered via a form. The services that have a need in the co-creation space can be decided and offered when enough knowledge is available of the users of the co-creation space.
Contractual and legal matters
As we fundamentally believe that co-creation works the best in a truly open environment, we suggest that for such a space the best way to solve the contractual matters would be by having standard contracts and partner agreements. That way the co-creation space can operate in a manner that is as open as possible and information within the co-creation space can be shared freely. The organizations taking part in the co-creation space need to sign these contracts and whatever projects are concerned about the confidentiality and IP matters should be pre-screened before being worked on in the co-creation space. The operation of the co-creation space should be based on openness and knowledge sharing.