Date of Award

Fall 12-12-2010

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Computer Information Systems

First Advisor

Daniel Robey

Second Advisor

Richard L. Baskerville

Third Advisor

Balasubramaniam Ramesh

Fourth Advisor

Ram S. Sriram

Abstract

The overall objective of this dissertation is to contribute to knowledge and theory about the influence of information technology (IT) on organizations and their members. This dissertation is composed of three related studies, each examining different aspects of the relationship between IT and organizations. The objective of the first study is to provide an overview of the dominant theoretical perspectives that IS researchers have used in the last five decades to study the influence of technology on organizations and their members. Without being exhaustive, this study seeks more specifically to identify, for each decade, the dominant theoretical perspectives used in the IS field. These dominant theoretical perspectives are illustrated by the selection and description of exemplars published in the decade and their implications for researchers and practitioners are discussed. This review is useful not only for understanding past trends and the current state of research in this area but also to foresee its future directions and guide researchers in their future research on the influence of IT on organizations and their members. The objective of the second study is to theorize how IT artifacts influence the design and performance of organizational routines. This study adopts organizational routines theory as its theoretical lens. Organizational routines represent an important part of almost every organization and organizational routines theory is an influential theory that explains how the accomplishment of organizational routines can contribute to both organizational stability and change. However, the current form of this theory has several limitations such as its neglect of the material aspect of artifacts and the distinctive characteristics of IT artifacts, and its treatment of artifacts as outside of organizational routines. This study seeks to overcome these limitations by extending organizational routines theory. The objective of the third study is to develop a better understanding of information security standards by analyzing the structure, nature and content of their controls. This study investigates also the mechanisms used in the design of information security standards to make them both applicable to a wide range of organizations and adaptable to various specific organizational settings. The results of this study led to the proposition of a new theory for information systems called generative control theory.

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