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26-29 May 2015
Europe/Berlin timezone
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Contribution Complete Research Paper

Fürstenberghaus - F33
23 - Openness and IT

Being Between Worlds: Individual-Societal Openness, Expansion, and Becoming through Meaningful Technologies


  • Jason SIMPSON

Primary authors


As our society continues to become increasingly connected through technologies, we have also witnessed a concomitant rise in overall value through the resulting openness. Therefore, research has begun to focus on how to further increase the openness of technologies and their respective structures. Some research has already been directed toward this goal, however much of this research ignores the possibly necessary need for individuals to become more open. This study seeks to explore and understand the nature of openness in individuals within a technological context and hence provide a theoretical foundation and direction for future research, as well as mechanisms for increasing openness. First, this paper examines what it means to be open and closed through the lens of personal construct theory, and how personal construct psychologists nudge clients towards an individual-collective horizon that allows for alternative ways of construing (being open). Next, using empirical data, the paper illustrates how this process increases openness in general and can shift attitudes towards more open technologies. Finally, the paper discusses how this process could be put into technology design and semantically connected with other technologies in order to achieve the same result on a societal scale.