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Computer-Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW)

Definition - What does Computer-Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW) mean?

Computer-supported cooperative work (CSCW) consists of software tools and technology that supports a group of individuals working on projects at different sites. It is based on the principle of group coordination and collaborative activities supported through computer systems.

Techopedia explains Computer-Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW)

The concept of computer-supported cooperative work was introduced by Irene Greif and Paul M. Cashman in 1984. It combines the cooperative work of individuals through networking, hardware, software, etc. The purpose is to provide identical improvements for multiple individuals working on the same or different production processes.CSCW adopts either a technology-centric or work-centric viewpoint. A technology-centric viewpoint emphasizes designing computer technology to support groups working together. A work-centric viewpoint emphasizes designing computer systems to support group work.There are 10 main dimensions inherent in CSCW:

  1. Time
  2. Space
  3. Interaction style
  4. Group size
  5. Infrastructure
  6. Context
  7. Privacy
  8. Collaborator mobility
  9. Extensibility
  10. Participant selection

These dimensions provide a rich design space through which the developers of a CSCW navigate. A face-to-face intervention includes digital white boards, electronic meeting systems, room ware and shared tables. A remote interaction includes videoconferencing, real-time groupware and electronic meeting systems.

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