Translating Boundaries A study of Activity-Based Working at AstraZeneca
Boundaries are often taken as a given in the literature and little is known about the construction process of boundaries. To address this gap in previous research, a case study was undertaken to observe movement of boundaries. In this paper, the authors observed the implementation of Activity-Based Working (ABW) at AstraZeneca (AZ) in Gothenburg. By looking at the employees’ behavior in the new office solution and by adopting a translation perspective when analyzing the empirical data, this paper contributes new insights regarding boundary construction and different boundaries interdependency. Since research about the ABW-office solution is scarce, a secondary contribution of this paper offers new insights regarding the ABW-concept. Drawing on the case study, the authors found that the relation between psychological and physical boundaries are closely interlinked. Furthermore, the psychological boundaries seem to have a larger impact on physical boundaries than previous studies emphasize. Drawing on the findings, the authors use an illustration to visualize the aspect of time in the process of boundary construction of physical, mental and social boundaries.
MSc in Management