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THE WORK SYSTEM METHOD FOR UNDERSTANDING INFORMATION SYSTEMS AND INFORMATION SYSTEM RESEARCH

THE WORK SYSTEM METHOD FOR UNDERSTANDING INFORMATION SYSTEMS AND INFORMATION SYSTEM RESEARCH,Communications of The Ais,Steven Alter

THE WORK SYSTEM METHOD FOR UNDERSTANDING INFORMATION SYSTEMS AND INFORMATION SYSTEM RESEARCH   (Citations: 32)
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The work system method is a broadly applicable set of ideas that use the concept of "work system" as the focal point for understanding, analyzing, and improving systems in organizations, whether or not IT is involved. The premises underlying this method may be controversial in the IS community because they imply that the traditional jargon and concerns of IS practitioners and researchers address only part of the issues that should be covered and may discourage focusing on other core issues related to successful projects and systems. The work system method includes both a static view of a current (or proposed) system in operation and a dynamic view of how a system evolves over time through planned change and unplanned adaptations. The static view is based on the "work system framework," which identifies the basic elements for understanding and evaluating a work system. This framework is prescriptive enough to be useful in describing the system being studied, identifying problems and opportunities, describing possible changes, and tracing the likely impacts as those changes propagate to other parts of the system. The dynamic view is based on the "work system life cycle model," which shows how a work system may evolve through multiple iterations of four phases. The static and dynamic views are used together in a principle-based systems analysis method that treats the information system as part of the work system until a final step when it distinguishes between work system changes that do and do not involve the information system.
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    • ...In order to add to the research on RPM in the IS context we introduce two theories, social‐cultural‐historical activity theory [12, 41] and work-system theory [3, 4]. The first of these provides an analytical framework within which to study human activity, and the second offers a systemic approach for a working organization...
    • ...Work-system theory incorporates both the static and the dynamic view of any system in an organization regardless of whether or not IT is involved and regardless of the size of the organization [3, 4]. The static view identifies basic elements of the work system and the dynamic view focuses on how the system evolves over time...
    • ...Fig. 2 Elements of work-system theory (adapted from [3, 4]) to the project context...

    Tero Vartiainenet al. Replacement of the Project Manager Reflected Through Activity Theory a...

    • ...Holistic and socio-technical systems oriented approaches towards work environments and information systems design have proposed to focus on the concept of work systems (Alter 2002) and socio-technical change (Lyytinen and Newman 2008)...

    Steffen Budweget al. Enhancing collaboration in communities of professionals using a Living...

    • ...A work system is defined as a “system in which human participants or machines perform work using information, technology, and other resources to produce products and services for internal and external customers” [12]...

    Yong Penget al. A Dynamic Representation Model for Service Systems

    • ...In [4], a socio-technical information system change model is discussed which focuses on two types of systems: the “building system” and, a concept stemming from [5], the “work system”...

    Hans Schafferset al. Collaborative Environments to Support Professional Communities: A Livi...

    • ...(2) Implement Data Communications over existing or easy-to-deploy communications facilities, which comprise Internet, satellite link and Wireless...

    Bartel Van De Walleet al. Humanitarian Information Management and Systems

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