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This is a selection of papers referenced in my research. Please note that the copyright of these papers belongs to the respective authors and/or publishers.

Available papers

The notion of business process revisited.

2004, J.L.G. Dietz and N. Habing, International Conference on Cooperative Information Systems (CoopIS), Larnaca, Cyprus, Springer Verlag (forthcoming)
The notion of business process is becoming increasingly important in all business and information/communication technology related disciplines, and therefore gets a lot of attention. Consequently, there is a variety of definitions as well as a variety in preciseness of definition. The research reported in this paper aims at clarifying the different understandings and unifying them in a common conceptual framework. Three fundamental questions concerning business processes are investigated: about the difference between business process and information process, about the distinction between the 'deep' structure and the 'surface' structure of a business process, and about the difference between system and process. These questions are discussed within the framework of the PSI-theory and the DEMO methodology.
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The paradigm is dead, the paradigm is dead. . .long live the paradigm: the legacy of Burrell and Morgan.

2000, T. Goles and R. Hirschheim, Omega 28: 249-68
Most of the research in the field of Information Systems appears to be guided by one set of philosophical assumptions - those of positivism. Such paradigm unity could prove problematic as it might stymie alternative conceptions of problems in the IS field. This paper inquires into whether the field does indeed embrace a solitary paradigm and if so, what its implications are. In so doing, the paper provides an overview of positivism, its paradigmatic grounding, why it became popular, and the obstacles to change. The paper looks at the possibility of paradigm pluralism particularly as it relates to pragmatism. The relationship between pragmatism and the call for more relevance in IS research is also explored. In its examination of these topics, the paper notes the rather surprising importance Burrell and Morgan's notion of paradigms has played in the conception of the field's philosophical discussions.
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A paradigmatic analysis contrasting information systems development approaches and methodologies.

1998, J. Iivari, R. Hirschheim, et al., Information Systems Research 9(2): 164-93
Keywords: Paradigms; Paradigmatic Analysis; Information Systems Development; Information Systems Development Methodologies and Approaches; Assumption Analysis
This paper analyses the fundamental philosophical assumptions of five "contrasting" information systems development (ISD) approaches: the interactionist approach, the speech act-based approach, the soft systems methodology approach, the trade unionist approach, and the professional work practice approach. These five approaches are selected for analysis because they illustrate alternative philosophical assumptions from the dominant "orthodoxy" identified in the research literature. The paper also proposes a distinction between "approach" and "methodology." The analysis of the five approaches is organized around four basic questions: What is the assumed nature of an information system (ontology)? What is human knowledge and how can it be obtained (epistemology)? What are the preferred research methods for continuing the improvement of each approach (research methodology)? and what are the implied values of information system research (ethics)? Each of these questions is explored from the internal perspective of the particular ISD approach. The paper addresses these questions through a conceptual structure which is based on a paradigmatic framework for analyzing ISD approaches.
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Multimethodology: towards a framework for mixing methodologies.

1997, J. Mingers and J. Brocklesby, Omega 25(5): 489-509
Keywords: critical OR/systems, hard OR/systems, methodology, multimethodology, paradigm incommensurability, pluralism, realism, soft OR/systems
In recent years the predilection for Systems/OR practice to be underpinned by a single methodology has been called into question, and reports on multimethodology projects are now filtering through into the literature. This paper takes a closer look at mnltimethodology. It outlines a number of different possibilities for combining methodologies, and considers why such a development might be desirable for more effective practice, in particular by focusing upon how it can deal more effectively with the richness of the real world and better assist through the various intervention stages. The paper outlines some of the philosophical, cultural and cognitive feasibility issues that multimethodology raises. It then describes a framework that can attend to the relative strengths of different methodologies and provide a basis for constructing multimethodology designs. Finally it presents a systematic way of decomposing methodologies to identify detachable elements, and the paper concludes by outlining aspects of an agenda for further research that emerges out of the discussion.
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Speech acts on trial [in IT design].

1996, J. Ljungberg and P. Holm, Scandinavian Journal of Information Systems 8(1): 29-51
Keywords: Speech act theory, language/action approach, IT design, IT development
In this document we discuss the applicability of speech act theory as a theoretical foundation for the design of information technology (IT). We pay special attention to the adaptation speech act theory has undergone when applied in the IT-field. One question we address concerns what happens when we import passive descriptive theories from other disciplines and use them as a basis in active design. The basic standpoint is that speech act theory may be useful, but only if one is aware of its shortcomings. By surveying various criticisms directed towards speech act based design along with extensions and alternative approaches we attempt to pinpoint these shortcomings. Our aim is to identify breakdowns of speech act based methods and discuss the need for further adaptation. This is done by the use of a framework, also presented in the chapter.
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Reengineering Work: Don't Automate, Obliterate.

1990, M. Hammer, Harvard Business Review 68(4): 104-12
No abstract available.
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General Systems Theory - The Skeleton of Science.

1956, K.E. Boulding, Management Science 2(3): 197-208
No abstract available.
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The Theory of Open Systems in Physics and Biology.

1950, L. von Bertalanffy, Science 111: 23-9
No abstract available.
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