Pushing and pulling: the micropolitics involved in virtual communication tool among knowledge workers

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


We investigate the micropolitics involved in the use of a virtual communication tool (VCT) among knowledge workers in an IT-consultancy firm. We aim to disentangle the multiple ways digital communication tools shape experiences of collaboration and knowledge sharing in the firm and how questions such as decision latitude and power emerge and play out among co-located knowledge workers and management. We apply a symbolic interactionist perspective and combine it with recent development in affective theory in order to shed light on how VCT create specific platforms for emotion work for knowledge workers. Based on ethnographic study we conclude that digital communication tools play a key role in relation to pivotal dilemmas facing knowledge workers today; self-management in relation to always-on connectivity, knowledge sharing and informal hierarchies. We discuss implications for investigating the micropolitics of communication tools.
Original languageEnglish
JournalHuman Relations
Number of pages25
Publication statusSubmitted - 2020


  • technology
  • social dynamics
  • ICT
  • worklife
  • future of work
  • socio-materiality


SIW: Socially Innovative Knowledge Work

Dupret, K., Nielsen, K. T., Pilmark, A. & Pultz, S.



Project: Research

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