Developing an ontology for use in a social process requires conceptualisation of the domain, and the influence of skills and perspectives of actors in the processes to be considered. It is essential that methodologies have a rigorous concept formulation process that ensures abstraction from the domain narration and also disambiguates the terms in the narration. However, the abstraction needs to be a parsimonious representation of a community’s collaborative terminology and concept pluralism. This paper presents a method of ontological concept formulation, using an approach based on a rigorous grounded theory method, and illustrates the process using a fragment from a case study. We have found that the method has assisted in clarifying terms emerging from the text and in grounding the conceptual understanding of natural language fragments, by interpreting concepts at the phrase level with the support of a reference lexicon, and using a basis of perspectivism. The identification of semantic relationships between concepts is conducted within the multiple adopted perspectives and permits a pluralistic approach to ontological formulation