1. In activity theory a central and intricate concept (see e.g. a special issue in Mind, Culture, and Activity 2005, vol. 12, no. 1; Kaptelinin & Miettinen, 2005).

2. Object (of knowledge, thought, activity, inquiry, etc.):
That to which knowing or thinking is directed; that which is developed or pursued in activity or inquiry. Objects are meant to include the items, the ontological ‘furniture’ of Popper’s World III, comprising such things as theories, concepts, systems of thought, which are conceived as, in some way self standing, i.e., whose existence is not simply as occurrent thoughts or mental processes of the thinker, inquirer, and so on. Hence ‘objects’ as real items can be investigated just as science investigates physical objects like asteroids. Further, in the widest sense, ‘objects’ comprise artefacts, inventions, prototypes and so on which have hybrid--conceptual and material--status. Objects are shared by participants of innovative knowledge communities. The object may go through substantial transformations during the process of inquiry.

3. Trialogical learning takes the ‘shared object’, conceived as such, as a central element.


Kaptelinin, V. & Miettinen, R. (2005). Perspectives on the Object of Activity. Mind, Culture, and Activity 12(1), 1-3.

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