95 research outputs found

    Power and politics in the adoption of information systems by organisations: the case of a research centre in Latin America

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    This thesis applies contributions from the social sciences to the study of power to examine how and why organisations adopt information systems. Its main concern is the set of events, actions and factors that induce an information system to become routinised in the organisational life; that is how information systems become institutionalised. I argue that the actions and events that lead to the adoption and subsequent institutionalisation of an information system are politically motivated and facilitated by power relations because information systems are chiefly instruments used by organisational actors to achieve their goals. To develop the argument I have adapted and interpreted a model rooted in social and organisational sciences. This model is used as a theoretical framework for the collection and analysis of data of two case studies. the first case centres on the collapse of the London Ambulance Service in 1992. The second and major case study focuses on a research centre in Latin America. This case study accounts for the adoption and institutionalisation of three information systems in that organisation. The application of the theoretical framework constitute a contribution in researching power and politics of information systems because it illustrates how to link data to the theory. This thesis also contributes to the theory of power and information systems because the findings of the two case studies allowed us to make inferences that complement the original theoretical model. Furthermore, those findings are propositions that information systems practitioners might convert into useful principles in assessing the political base and power relationships of the organisation for which they work. The thesis concludes by asserting that the adoption and institutionalisation of an information system necessarily imply the exercise of power of those organisation actors that own or propose the system

    Post-positivist Review of Technology Acceptance Model.

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    This paper reflects upon the technology acceptance model (TAM) from the perspective of the post positivistic philosophy of science. I explore what it is to know, what a theory is, and what it means to be scientific in the context of TAM. In particular, I review criteria for determining whether TAM is scientific or not in light of post-positivistic debates about the nature of science. For this purpose, I apply Popper’s principle of demarcation, which determines whether a theory-like TAM-is falsifiable and the logical connection argument to show that connections between actions and intentions cannot be subjected to empirical testing similar to connections between chemical entities. I also draw on Kuhn’s notion of scientific revolutions to observe the degree to which TAM has become normal science. Finally, I review TAM from the Lakatosian perspective of scientific research programs to evaluate whether the program is advancing or declining. My main objective is not to provide a conclusive evaluation of TAM as a research program or a paradigm, but to open the philosophical foundations of TAM for scrutiny so that it can be evaluated not only within the validation rules followed by its proponents, but by applying a set of well known criteria established in the post-positivistic views of science

    Exploring the Formation of a Healthcare Information Infrastructure: Hierarchy or Meshwork?

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    The digitalization of economic and social activity has brought information infrastructures (IIs) to the forefront of research. This paper studies II formation processes and their outcomes; namely, II architecture and distribution of control rights. We conduct an in-depth exploratory case study of an electronic prescription II and report on two formation processes: stratification and meshworking. The stratification process in our case study involved classifying the IIs’ diverse socio-technical components into homogeneous groups and consolidating them into a coherent hierarchical structure that standardized the components’ behavior. The outcome of this stratification was a dual and hierarchical architecture and a fairly centralized locus of control. The meshworking process, by contrast, assembled heterogeneous components without homogenizing them; the components were distributed in a way that enabled them to self-organize. The outcome of this meshworking process was a modular architecture that decoupled the central nodes from the users’ installed base and a more decentralized structure. Consequently, the final II architecture was a hybrid offering both centralized control and autonomy of the parts. Our research further illustrates how this architecture then influenced the project’s complexity and the actors’ position in the sector. We build our contribution on extant II research

    Social Movement Sustainability on Social Media: An Analysis of the Women’s March Movement on Twitter

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    Social media has emerged as a powerful medium to organize and mobilize social movements. In particular, the connective action of social media builds associations and allows for the continuity of social movements. Yet there is a lack of research on how connective action emergent from social media messages sustains long-term social movements. Accordingly, in this study, we concentrate on Twitter messages related to Women’s March protests held in 2017, 2018, and 2019. Using an interpretive analysis followed by the topic modeling approach, we analyzed the tweets to identify the different types of messages associated with the movement. These messages were classified using a set of categories and subcategories. Furthermore, we conducted a temporal analysis of the message (sub)categories to understand how distinct messages allow movement continuity beyond a specific protest march. Results suggest that while most of the messages are used to motivate and mobilize individuals, the connective action tactics employed through messages sent before, during, and after the marches allowed Women’s March to become a broader and more persistent movement. We advance theoretical propositions to explain the sustainability of a long-term social movement on social media, exemplified through large-scale connective action that persists over time. In doing so, this study contributes to connective action research by providing message categorization that synthesizes the meaning of message content. The findings could help social movement organizers learn different ways to frame messages that resonate with broader social media users. Moreover, our approach to analyzing a large set of tweets might interest other qualitative researchers

    SOCIAL MEDIA AND SOCIAL MOVEMENTS: A CASE OF WOMEN’S MARCH

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    Social media is a powerful medium to organize and mobilize social movements. In this study, we concentrate on the content of messages sent through social media during a particular social movement. Specifically, we focus on Twitter messages related to the Women’s March. Accordingly, we conduct a qualitative analysis of the content of the tweets posted during the marches held in January 2017 and January 2018. Through our analysis, we identify the different types of messages associated with the movement. These messages are classified through a set of categories and sub-categories. We found that most of the messages are used to motivate and mobilize individuals. Our research contributes to social movement and social media literature and enhances the understanding of how social media is used to motivate and mobilize people. The findings could also help social movement organizers in learning different ways in which social media can help them to frame their messages beyond motivation and mobilization

    Tutorial: Legality and Ethics of Web Scraping

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    Researchers and practitioners often use various tools and technologies to automatically retrieve data from the Web (often referred to as Web scraping) when conducting their projects. Unfortunately, they often overlook the legality and ethics of using these tools to collect data. Failure to pay due attention to these aspects of Web Scraping can result in serious ethical controversies and lawsuits. Accordingly, we review legal literature together with the literature on ethics and privacy to identify broad areas of concern together with a list of specific questions that researchers and practitioners engaged in Web scraping need to address. Reflecting on these questions and concerns can potentially help researchers and practitioners decrease the likelihood of ethical and legal controversies in their work

    ICTs, Globalization, and Local Diversity

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    This paper is based on a panel discussion at the 2002 International Conference on Information Systems in Barcelona. Three panellists responded to a set of questions on the meaning of the term globalization to them, and the role of information and communications technologies (ICTs) in globalization processes. The panellists also highlighted the importance of local diversity in understanding globalization and ICTs, drawing from their varied research in contexts such as western country financial markets, health systems in Guatemala, and e-commerce in Mexico. A further output of the panel, and this paper, is the identification of key research questions and theories for future IS research in this important area

    Information Flow Impediments in Disaster Relief Supply Chains

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    Supply Chain Management (SCM) is seldom more difficult than during disaster relief efforts. As supply chains quickly form in response to a disaster, a slow information flow presents a major hindrance to coordinating the allocation of resources necessary for disaster relief efforts. This paper identifies impediments to the flow of information through supply chains following large scale and catastrophic disasters. Given the scarce body of literature on this subject, a grounded theory case study was conducted to examine an extreme case. The study concentrates on the efforts of multiple organizations and individuals that provided relief in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, which battered the Gulf Coast of the southeastern United States in late 2005. Data was gathered from diverse sources, including government agencies, profit and non-profit organizations, and individuals, during and after the disaster. Based on our data analysis, we not only identify information flow impediments (i.e., inaccessibility, inconsistent data and information formats, inadequate stream of information, low information priority, source identification difficulty, storage media misalignment, unreliability, and unwillingness), but also identify likely sources of these impediments, and examine their consequences to organizations’ disaster recovery efforts. Our findings suggest some potential design principles for devising solutions capable of reducing or alleviating the impact of information flow impediments in future disasters

    What Lies Beneath: Unraveling the Generative Mechanisms of Smart Technology and Service Design

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    The rapid digitalization of products and services has given rise to smart, technological products and services in various industries. While researchers recognize the complexity of digital components embedded in smart services, there exists scarce research on the evolution of product development, smart technology’s use, and the mechanisms wherein changes in products and services are triggered and implemented. In this research, grounded on the theoretical basis of layered modular architecture, we study a digital venture in an event management industry and offer a substantive look at the three mechanisms—system-environment fitness, data exploitation, and user expansion—that are responsible for transforming smart technology from a conceptual idea into a real product and from a simple digital device into an integrated smart system. Our research findings offer theoretical insight into the dynamics and fluidity of mechanisms that are relevant to smart technology’s design, use, and outcomes

    Phylogeny and Power in the IS Domain: A Response to Benbasat and Zmud\u27s Call for Returning to the IT Artifact

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    We question a call by Benbasat and Zmud (2003) to narrow the focus of information systems research to a set of core properties. We first discuss three limitations of their argument and then offer two alternative viewpoints for analyzing the state of our profession. One viewpoint casts the arguments of Benbasat and Zmud in terms of power in the domain of scholarship. The second viewpoint, based on colonial systems, sees fresh perspectives, discipline newcomers, boundary spanners, and topical outliers as the likely source of the field¡¯s creativity, vitality, and long-term survival. We conclude that the discipline is best served by focusing on supporting diverse and novel research. We proffer neither an alternative research agenda nor a research-appropriate evaluation mechanism since we demonstrate that such restrictive policies hinder both our relevance and potential survival. We suggest some administrative changes for the IS discipline intended to encourage and nurture creativity without sacrificing academic rigor
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