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Title: Reconstructing meaning without redesigning products: The case of the Serie7 chair
Authors: Gasparin, Marta
Green, William
First Published: 7-May-2018
Publisher: Wiley
Citation: Creativity and Innovation Management, 2018
Abstract: What constitutes product value has been traditionally attributed to aesthetics, elicitation of emotions, quality and style. The design driven innovation literature, instead, suggests that meanings are sought and designed as a way to deliver value to customers; however, it infers that product meanings evolve when a product is redesigned. What happens to product meanings when products have not been redesigned but have remained successful in the market over a number of decades? This study identifies how meanings attached to long-lasting products have changed in spite of a consistent form and shape. Using Actor-Network Theory (ANT) as an analytical framework to understand the relationship between meaning and the materiality of the object, an ethnography of the Serie7 chair was conducted. Weekly site visits; formal and informal interviews were coupled with observations and supplemented with 60 years of historic information. We contribute to the innovation literature by demonstrating the importance of materiality in constructing product meaning over long periods. We analysed the Serie7 in four different periods of its life, looking at meaning of the chair at the time, and how management proposed new meanings through a translation process, connecting otherwise disconnected things.
DOI Link: 10.1111/caim.12267
ISSN: 0963-1690
eISSN: 1467-8691
Embargo on file until: 7-May-2020
Version: Post-print
Status: Peer-reviewed
Type: Journal Article
Rights: Copyright © 2018, Wiley. Deposited with reference to the publisher’s open access archiving policy. (
Description: The file associated with this record is under embargo until 24 months after publication, in accordance with the publisher's self-archiving policy. The full text may be available through the publisher links provided above.
Appears in Collections:Published Articles, College of Social Science

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