Participatory design as the temporal flow of coalescing participatory lines

Hayes, N. ORCID: 0000-0001-8718-4671, Introna, L.D. and Cass, N., 2021. Participatory design as the temporal flow of coalescing participatory lines. Computer Supported Cooperative Work, 30 (4), pp. 507-538. ISSN 0925-9724

Full text not available from this repository.


This paper argues that the existing literature on participatory design (PD) tends to focus on frontstage design interactions (workshops, participants, methodologies, techniques, etc.) to facilitate PD ‘here and now’—referred to as the interactional approach. In contrast, the paper proposes to contribute to an evolving literature, referred to as the transformational approach, that takes a more longitudinal line and which attends to both the frontstage and backstage within an extended temporal frame. To do this the paper draws on the work of the social anthropologist Tim Ingold, in particular, his concept of the happening of ongoing life as a bundle of flowing lines. The paper argues that PD becomes possible when ongoing participation is conceived of as a set of corresponding (or coalescing) and conditioning lines of flow—each line with its own history, attentionality, rhythms, tempos and so forth. To illustrate what this reorientation might mean for PD the paper draws on an in-depth action research study of a PD initiative that sought to develop a digital service to address loneliness and social isolation in a rural location in the UK. The paper explores how project members, individual participants, non-governmental organisation, government representatives, evaluators and funders co-responded to each other (or not) as they engaged, or became implicated, in the PD process. The paper concludes with some practical implications of what such an Ingoldian reorientation might mean for the ongoing development of PD as a transformational methodology.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: Computer Supported Cooperative Work
Creators: Hayes, N., Introna, L.D. and Cass, N.
Publisher: Springer
Date: August 2021
Volume: 30
Number: 4
ISSN: 0925-9724
Rights: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit
Divisions: Professional Services > The Directorate
Record created by: Jonathan Gallacher
Date Added: 22 Sep 2022 15:44
Last Modified: 22 Sep 2022 15:51

Actions (login required)

Edit View Edit View


Views per month over past year


Downloads per month over past year