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  • Reflective Ethnographic Design of Collaborative Economy Business Models Using Annotated Portfolios

    Justin Larner

    Chapter from the book: Travlou P. & Ciolfi L. 2022. Ethnographies of Collaborative Economies across Europe: Understanding Sharing and Caring.

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    As the collaborative platform economy develops, network effects tend to create one dominant platform within each domain such as transport, reducing the power of workers to find alternatives. The research problem is to find a specific methodology that could enable researchers to draw on the experience of participants as workers and their wish to create ways of working that offer them greater power in the collaborative economy. Ethnographic studies can enable researchers to discover how workers make sense of their involvement in the collaborative platform economy and provide valuable data on how current business models and platforms can affect worker power. However, a wish to promote worker power implies a participatory form of research that aims to break down power relations between researchers and participants. This chapter reflects on the methodological challenges of studying the collaborative economy ethnographically in order to develop new business models and platforms. Annotated portfolios, a technique used in human-computer interaction, offers the potential to enable worker experience to inform new business model designs. Researchers can use annotated portfolios to articulate latent designs in ethnographic data gathered from engagement with workers in the collaborative economy. In bringing these designs into existence, researchers can then contribute their perspective to a co-design process with these workers. Annotated portfolio techniques can thus help both researchers and workers to use ethnographic data to design new business models in the collaborative economy.

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    Larner, J. 2022. Reflective Ethnographic Design of Collaborative Economy Business Models Using Annotated Portfolios. In: Travlou P. & Ciolfi L (eds.), Ethnographies of Collaborative Economies across Europe. London: Ubiquity Press. DOI: https://doi.org/10.5334/bct.j

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    Published on Dec. 30, 2022


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