Collaborative decision making processes are a form of communication inside organizations. Their functioning can teach lessons for the design of electronic office systems. Those processes are open ended and therefore decide themselves on their form. Like oral deliberations which cannot be modelled in advance any open ended communication process needs means for common control over the further advancement and the ending of the process.
The history of German administrative practice and its special methods of using disposals for the control of common processes shows the creation of records as based on communication needs generated by the intention of joint actions. For electronic decision making processes the purposes remain the same, but the means have to follow the effects of electronic communication on messages.
The book is a reworked English version of a thesis for the official qualification for university professorship accepted by the German University of Administrative Sciences Speyer. Germany.