Things you’re likely to see here …

By Michel

By Michel Avital

Welcome to IMphd

*** This is an inactive repository. ***

The IMphd blog served as an outlet of the BENAIS Doctorate Program in Information Management (IM) between 2009-2011.

In this multi-authored community blog, participants in the program could share conversation starters, ideas, and the likes. The adjacent tabs provide further information about upcoming seminars, the PhD program, and general overview. For pictures, see here => Authors and contributors:


The paradox of empirical research in design

By Robin Effing.
After a big pause, with major life changes, I am back in the IMPHD class. I think I missed a lot of engaged talks and presentations.

While reading the articles from Stappers (Michel, 2007) and Sleeswijk Visser et al (2005) I started thinking again about the complexity of this type of research.

Continue reading



I am not really use modelling languages, but last time I learn UML and REA (resource event agent) model. REA also have four levels of details or abstractions, likewise, UML has nine basic diagram that can be used; Need something to be beneficial to switch from commonly use language to another, what would that be for this MEMO case? I am not quite sure what it means by including organizational context and culture in the modelling

Some notes and questions

By Ileana

In the reading for this seminar, the authors propose an enterprise modeling “that helps with the design of corporate information systems that are in line with a company’s organization and its long terms strategies” (Frank). The particular strength of the proposed enterprise model is that it integrates information systems with organizational context and organizational strategies into one multi-perspective model. As such, it moves away from previous models that focused on only one of these elements, be it information systems or organizational processes.

As enterprise modeling is not my field of study, I will focus this conversation starter on a more general topic. Particularly, I would like to raise a question related to the authors’ view on IT.  Reading the articles for this week, I couldn’t not notice that the authors write about IT as being 1. an organizational resource that can help an organization stay competitive and 2. a tool that facilitates particular organizational processes (see Orlikowski and Iacono (2001) for a critique on these views on IT). Despite the fact that the authors propose an enterprise model that aims to integrate IT and organizational processes, cultures and strategies into one framework, IT and organizational processes are still portrayed as independent, albeit influencing each other. Continue reading

Mixed method and multiple paradigm research


Myers & Avison argued in their book of qualitative research in IS that case study could be distinguished as positivist, interpretive or critical case study. Conducting mixed method research within one paradigm seems possible. However, is it considered acceptable in IS to use different kind of method in mixed method research, which have different underlying paradigm? For example Interpretive case study with positivist experiment.

Jansen & Brinkkemper (2009) described about the internal, external validity and empirical reliability for their case study. Would it be more appropriate to use the term of credibility, transferability and dependability? Or perhaps, it arises because of their stance on Yin’s positivistic principle?

Researcher & action..


The articles provided for action research method are interesting. I believe that action research is really beneficial for illustrative and explanatory purpose. Several thoughts arise; referring last discussion concerning practical and rigour, how rigour is the action research? Are consultancy jobs also considered as action researches? And, how the researchers maintain their objectivity in interpreting or evaluating the final outcome since they also involved in prescribing the direction or “action” of organisations?

Finding and explaining relations of constructs which are statistically significant is consider interesting in quantitative approach, what are the events that consider interesting in action research? How this method deal with the issue of reproduce ability of the research process. It should be interesting to know how the action research might be applied in conducting evaluation of ICT investment in organisations.

Sociomateriality in the IS discipline – towards a seamless tapestry

by Saima Khan
The concept of Sociomateriality has been of widespread interest to researchers in disciplines as diverse as organizational studies, sociology of science & technology, and feminist studies, and has played a pivotal role in understanding the interplay between the social and the material in various aspects of everyday organizing. And yet, there still remains a scarcity of literature in the IS discipline in this domain. However, I do observe an increasing interest by IS researchers in the notion of sociomateriality and the recognition that new ways of theorizing IS by advancing and incorporating a sociomaterial schema in the IS discipline is very much needed.

 I believe that we, as IS researchers, also need to re-think beyond the ontological separation and duality between the social and the technical, the subject and the object, people and things etc. and recognize the increasing blurredness between these attributes which is in real life akin to more of a seamless tapestry. We also need to understand that focussing on the duality of these attributes poses conceptual difficulties to what is in reality a constitutive entanglement (Orlikowski, 2007), or a seamless tapestry. For example, sociomaterial practices of IS adoption, or the materiality of everyday IS mediated work (Leonardi and Barley, 2008) illustrate that the social and the material cannot be separated into two distinct entities. It is and remains a constitutive entanglement and any separation or distinction between the two should only be done for analytical purposes.

Challenging the notion of “organizational change”

By Ileana

My conversation starter is intended to raise a question concerning our conceptualization of the notion of “organizational change” and its usefulness when used together with the sociomateriality approach.

I deeply support the call for a theorization of people and technology (or any other non-human actors) as “constitutively entangled” (Orlikowski 2007), rather than viewing them as independent entities mutually influencing each other. Likewise, I do support the argument that the constitutive entanglements generated between human and non-human actors are at the heart of understanding how new forms of organizing come about and how they are negotiated and performed. Continue reading