Metaphorical analysis of social factors during information systems development
by Zahid Hussain, Nelarine Cornelius
International Journal of Business Information Systems (IJBIS), Vol. 2, No. 1, 2007

Abstract: Metaphors have been used widely by researchers for sense making in organisations. In this paper, we present the findings of research which employs Morgan's metaphors in order to chart the distribution of assumptions and social behaviour among Information Systems (IS) developers, during IS development and implementation, in a UK National Health Service (NHS) organisation. We present the findings of a longitudinal interpretive case study. There are a limited number of interpretive case studies that look at organisational factors associated with systems development, which we regard as an oversight given the extent of system failure reported in the IS literature. Our findings highlight the predominance of certain metaphors that influence the behaviour of key stakeholders involved in IS development. We conclude that the use of metaphors for analysis in IS development provides important insights into the attitudes and behaviours of key organisational stakeholders and reveals the impact of these on the IS development.

Online publication date: Thu, 30-Nov-2006

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