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Bridging the Chasm between Sociotechnical and Technical Views of Systems in Organizations

Steven Alter
University of San Francisco, USA


Abstract
This paper presents a metamodel that addresses the long standing gap between technical and sociotechnical views of IT-reliant systems in organizations. The metamodel provides an integrated set of concepts that extend and clarify the work system framework and related work system concepts, thereby helping in understanding, analyzing, and designing technical and sociotechnical systems. The metamodel is a step toward an enhanced work system approach that is understandable to business professionals, is more rigorous than most current applications of work system concepts, and can be linked more directly to precise, highly detailed analysis and design approaches for IT professionals. Specification of the metamodel clarifies ambiguities in the work system framework and forms a clearer conceptual basis for tools and methods that could improve communication and collaboration between business and IT professionals. It also might be used to organize a body of knowledge for the IS field.

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Reference:Alter, S. (2009). "Bridging the Chasm between Sociotechnical and Technical Views of Systems in Organizations," Proceedings > Proceedings of JAIS Theory Development Workshop . Sprouts: Working Papers on Information Systems, 9(73). http://sprouts.aisnet.org/9-73
Keywords:sociotechnical system, work system, systems analysis and design, metamodel, conceptual model
Item Type:Article - Volume 9 Article 73 (2009)
Language:English
Email: Steven Alter (alter@usfca.edu)
Additional Information:AN EARLIER VERSION WAS PRESENTED AT THE JAIS THEORY DEVELOPMENT WORKSHOP IN 2009.

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