Creating a Collaborative Space on the 3DEXPERIENCE Platform

By Ray Morrogh on

Collaborative spaces are foundational to using the 3DEXPERIENCE platform, as they are the vault that “owns” and controls access permissions to your data. In this blog, I want to go over how to create a collaborative space and some key questions to be asking when creating one. It should be noted that 3D Spaces are your file repository, not your data management system. Other widgets in the platform, like bookmark editor, fulfill that task.

How do I create a 3DEXPERIENCE collaborative space?

Creating spaces is simple in action but should be deliberate in thought. To create a collaborative space, open the 3DSpace widget and then on the dropdown next to My Collaborative Spaces, simply click new collaborative space.

creating a collaborative space on 3dexperience

You will then have some options when creating your space, and this is the component that requires careful consideration, as spaces can only be deleted when they are completely empty and visibility levels can only be promoted, not demoted (more on this later).

collaborative space directions

How many spaces should I create?

Your team structure may call for creating distinct spaces for different departments. For many teams, this may just be having your common space and then a separate design space. If you’re interested in having things be more siloed, it’s recommended to create more than once space and give access as you see fit. This could be different collaborative spaces for different teams or company locations, or if you create large and complex products, or different spaces for different products.  You can set the visibility permissions to protected or private as you see fit.

Who needs access to the data? What type of access do they need?

Once your space is created, the next step is to add users. Settings can be managed by default, and it is recommended to not allow new users to create a collaborative space. This can avoid clutter and confusion on the administrative side. Giving all users access to the common space is a good default, since if you use parts libraries, that data will be stored there by default. There are 3 levels of permissions that you can grant users: contributor, author, and leader.


Contributors are permitted to open and view SOLIDWORKS content as read only and view the contents in any space they have access to. Key limitations are that they cannot revise or change maturity states or add documents.


Authors can reserve products and create new revisions, including of released products. They can also move physical products from Frozen to In Work if they are “responsible” for the object. Key limitations of the author role include: being unable to change a product to released or obsolete and are unable to reserve a product in the released state.


Leaders can do everything that Authors can do but can change states of products to release without being responsible and can change the sate of a product to obsolete.

How visible should this vault be to those within my organization?

There are three types of spaces: public, protected, and private. Private is the most restricted and content within private spaces is only accessible to users that are members of the collaborative space. Protected spaces limit the visibility of content to those in the released or obsolete state. This content is visible to all organization users when in either of those states. Public spaces make all content visible to all users within the organization. It is critical to note here that spaces can be promoted to greater visibility, but they can never be demoted to lesser visibility. You can make a private space public but can never revert a public space to private.

To learn more about 3D Space creation in 3DEXPERIENCE, take a look at some of our course offerings, such as our Platform Administration Training.