Material story lab at CREATE

Anete Strand

Daily Manager


Rendsburggade 14, 

9000 Aalborg

Tlf 51719587

Material Story Lab at Aalborg University is an international network and research based energy center that works with material stories as an innovative concept within educational, management and organizational development, (cp. Dissertation by Strand, 2012, Strand 2014, 2018, 2019 and Jørgensen & Strand, 2011, 2012, 2014, see also Jørgensen, Strand & Thomassen, 2012). Its specific focus is to enhance and profit from attending to the creative, material sides of developmental processes through an active use of space, body and artifacts as co-shapers of change, knowledge-production and development. Material Story Lab is associated at the following knowledge group of the Aalborg University:

Centre for Dialogue and Organization (CDO). However the lab  coworks with other knowledge groups such as InDiMedia, Mattering, VILD and ELL in the Department of Communication and Psychology, at AAU.


Material Story Lab is mobile as it consist of 12 mobile storytelling units that are placed physically at the city campus of the University at CREATE with researchers and teachers as consultants who are helped by a set designer (Jeanette Clemmensen) and painter-sculptor (Jens Munk) as counter-balancing, complementary parties.

The Material Story Lab offers a process-oriented and holistic approach to practices of knowing and becoming. It offers an expansion of teaching strategies and techniques that takes the multimodal, intra-active nature of knowing and being seriously; it enables and fosters the intra-action of diverse learning styles in the envelopment process. Western mono-modal approaches to teaching and learning are counter-balanced by Taoist emphasis on analogue and digital modes of storytelling, Feng-shui understanding of chi-intraplay, bodily practices of tactile engagements and various materials of human and non-human agency. The Material Story Lab is thus grounded in a more complex and holistic understanding of how human-non-human intra-actions are enacted as ‘betweens’.


Material Story Lab are as such an ethico-epistem-ontological research lab within higher education and organization studies. Material Story Lab, is perceived as the natural local power center of the initiative.


Material Story Lab’s practices draw on the onto-epistemology of material storytelling that comprises sets of practices of the intra-action of stories of material artifacts, stories of space, stories of bodies as

well as oral storytelling (e.g.Strand, 2011). By enhancing the use of supplementary pedagogical means in fusing various experiential learning modalities with propositional and practical kinds of knowing, the onto-epistemology of material storytelling is intended to experiment with integrating alternate forms of knowing in the PBL-model at AAU and beyond.


The purpose of Material Story Lab is thus to integrate these new innovative teaching practices and new organizational intervention methods with international research projects and knowledge networks. We draw on research networks and projects that already exist and in which we already take an active part. 


One such example is at the Sustainability Storytelling Lab at the European School of Governance (EUSG)

Some Ucrac projects involved in the development of Material Story Lab

Concept Video

Duck Video

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