The Sound of Coordinated Efforts: Music Producers, Boundary Objects and Trading Zones

Music production involves coordinating efforts among diverse experts, namely recording engineers and musicians. Each contributes specialized work to the production by utilizing shared resources such as music, recorded sound and technologies. To coordinate their efforts, a producer provides information about the production and resources as pertinent to individual contributions. Similar modes of communication and coordination have been studied in scientific research communities. In cognitive science and the sociology of science, “boundary objects” (Star and Griesemer: 1989) and “trading zones” (Galison: 1999) are concepts used to explain how this coordination is enabled and has relevance for music production.