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EquiP: A Method to Co-Design for Cooperation

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In Participatory Design (PD), the design of a cooperative digital solution should involve all stakeholders in the co-design. When one stakeholder’s position is weaker due to socio-cultural structures or differences in knowledge or abilities, PD methods should help designers balance the power in the design process at both the macro and micro levels. We present a PD method that addresses the power relations arising during the design process and draws on theories about participation and power in the design and organisation of change processes. We contribute to Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW) by using the PD method to design computer support for cooperation on cognitive rehabilitation between people with Mild Acquired Brain Injuries (MACI) and their healthcare professionals, where strengthening the cooperation is considered an element of patient empowerment. This method is presented as a contribution to the intersection between PD and CSCW. The discussion of power in PD contributes to the discussion of cooperation in CSCW. We found that EquiP supported the creation of choices, and hence the ‘power to’ influence the design. This method can contribute to a power ‘equilibrium’ and a positive-sum power relation in PD sessions involving all stakeholders.


Çarçani, Klaudia; Bratteteig, Tone; Holone, Harald; Herstad, Jo (2023): EquiP: A Method to Co-Design for Cooperation. Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW): Vol. 32, No. 3. DOI: 10.1007/s10606-023-09463-w. Springer. ISSN: 1573-7551. pp. 385-438