Beyond Practice: Assemblage Thinking in Sociomateriality Research

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearchpeer-review


The George Floyd video catalyzed a big bang that snowballed a scalar phenomenon, transcending institutional and national boundaries. Understanding how digital artefacts, like the Floyd video, trigger big bangs requires a theoretical lens that foregrounds materiality in the becoming of phenomena at scale. We concur with criticism that sociomateriality, with its focus on materialdiscursive practice, provides insufficient support in the study of scalar phenomena and propose assemblage thinking - inspired by Deleuze and Guattari - as an alternate theoretical lens. Through an empirical analysis of the Floyd big bang, we argue that when an assemblage is the point of departure for analysis, researchers uncover unexpected connections beyond every-day practices that scale digital phenomena. And we present five conceptual devices – assemblages as concepts, events as encounters, lines of flight, plane of immanence, and rhizomes and trees – to equip scholars with a vocabulary to study scalar phenomena beyond practice-based approaches.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 30th European Conference on Information Systems (ECIS)
Number of pages14
Place of PublicationAtlanta, GA
PublisherAssociation for Information Systems. AIS Electronic Library (AISeL)
Publication date2022
Article number108
Publication statusPublished - 2022
EventThe 30th European Conference on Information Systems (ECIS) 2022: New Horizons in Digitally United Societies - Universitatea de Vest din Timișoara (UVT) / West University of Timişoara (WUT), Timisoara, Romania
Duration: 19 Jun 202224 Jun 2022
Conference number: 30


ConferenceThe 30th European Conference on Information Systems (ECIS) 2022
LocationUniversitatea de Vest din Timișoara (UVT) / West University of Timişoara (WUT)
Internet address
SeriesProceedings of the European Conference on Information Systems


  • Sociomateriality
  • Assemblage thinking
  • Deleuze and Guattari
  • Practice

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