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Playstations and workstations: identifying and negotiating digital games work

Playstations and workstations: identifying and negotiating digital games work
Playstations and workstations: identifying and negotiating digital games work
Purpose: the aim of this paper is to present qualitative research with higher education games design students to explore situated understandings of work and the negotiation of “work” and “non?work” boundaries.

Design/methodology/approach: situated understandings of work are examined through interviews and focus groups with games design students in the UK and contextualised with interviews with games industry professionals and attendance at industry careers events. The theoretical approach of “occupational devotion” is used to explore work practices and motivations, and “technological action” is then used to draw out the significance of relations with games technologies in this negotiation.

Findings: the main finding concerns the continued significance of a fixed field of “work” for students intending to progress from education into “work”. The importance of “work” was identified in how students positioned themselves (occupational devotion) and engaged with games technologies (technological action). This is contrasted with the emphasis on co?creative relations and broadbrush assertions of blurring boundaries between work and non?work.

Research limitations/implications: a larger sample of students that ranged across different digital gaming disciplines within higher education (programming; art) would add breadth and further perspectives. Further research would connect student perceptions of the games industry, from attending events such as careers fairs, and the industry promotional discourses and representational strategies. A longitudinal study would be valuable for tracing changes in recruitment strategies and industry and education intersections.

Practical implications: the paper provides insights into how higher education students engage with the games industry and articulates their personal development and employability attributes.

Originality/value: this paper makes a case for research with students as a means to explore boundaries of “work” and “non?work”. It questions the blurring of “work” and “non?work”, and provides conceptual pointers, combined with empirical research, that indicate the continued purchase of fixed notions of “work” for workers?in?the?making. This is relevant for scholarly research into the sociology of work, higher education pedagogy, and industry?education relations
computer games, higher education, students, united kingdom
0959-3845
10-25
Ashton, Daniel
b267eae4-7bdb-4fe3-9267-5ebad36e86f7
Ashton, Daniel
b267eae4-7bdb-4fe3-9267-5ebad36e86f7

Ashton, Daniel (2011) Playstations and workstations: identifying and negotiating digital games work. Information Technology & People, 24 (1), 10-25. (doi:10.1108/09593841111109396).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Purpose: the aim of this paper is to present qualitative research with higher education games design students to explore situated understandings of work and the negotiation of “work” and “non?work” boundaries.

Design/methodology/approach: situated understandings of work are examined through interviews and focus groups with games design students in the UK and contextualised with interviews with games industry professionals and attendance at industry careers events. The theoretical approach of “occupational devotion” is used to explore work practices and motivations, and “technological action” is then used to draw out the significance of relations with games technologies in this negotiation.

Findings: the main finding concerns the continued significance of a fixed field of “work” for students intending to progress from education into “work”. The importance of “work” was identified in how students positioned themselves (occupational devotion) and engaged with games technologies (technological action). This is contrasted with the emphasis on co?creative relations and broadbrush assertions of blurring boundaries between work and non?work.

Research limitations/implications: a larger sample of students that ranged across different digital gaming disciplines within higher education (programming; art) would add breadth and further perspectives. Further research would connect student perceptions of the games industry, from attending events such as careers fairs, and the industry promotional discourses and representational strategies. A longitudinal study would be valuable for tracing changes in recruitment strategies and industry and education intersections.

Practical implications: the paper provides insights into how higher education students engage with the games industry and articulates their personal development and employability attributes.

Originality/value: this paper makes a case for research with students as a means to explore boundaries of “work” and “non?work”. It questions the blurring of “work” and “non?work”, and provides conceptual pointers, combined with empirical research, that indicate the continued purchase of fixed notions of “work” for workers?in?the?making. This is relevant for scholarly research into the sociology of work, higher education pedagogy, and industry?education relations

Full text not available from this repository.

More information

Accepted/In Press date: 18 November 2010
Published date: 2011
Keywords: computer games, higher education, students, united kingdom
Organisations: Winchester School of Art

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 382749
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/382749
ISSN: 0959-3845
PURE UUID: b838bf4c-f7aa-4097-b4f2-b2a8a8c0bf56
ORCID for Daniel Ashton: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-3120-1783

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 12 Oct 2015 07:54
Last modified: 06 Jun 2018 12:21

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