Communication across the divide : an investigation into the beliefs and behaviours of IS academics with respect to the dissemination of their work
The IS field prides itself on its closeness to practice and, in recent years, has found itself under growing pressures from government and business for the improved utilisation of research results. This thesis is concerned with the beliefs and behaviours of IS researchers in UK universities with respect to the dissemination of their results. An underlying assumption of the thesis is the potential interest and relevance of IS research results to those working in organisations, based on the author's experience as an IS practitioner. The work is the first phase of a longer research programme which aims to encourage the empowerment of those engaged in IS activity through improved awareness of, and access to, such results. Both the choice of research issue and the research approach itself were informed by the IS literature, in particular Stakeholder Theory, Multiview 2 and the variety of literature based on the Multiple Perspectives approach to problem solving. A critical stance is taken throughout the work, with an holistic consideration of dissemination within the IS research. The critical perspective is promoted in the thesis through the surfacing of assumptions about the activity of IS research and the influence of its stakeholders. Insights into the area of dissemination are presented from in-depth interviews with IS leaders in UK universities, supported by the findings from a broader survey of the IS academic community. The analysis and discussion of findings explore issues from Resource- Dependence and Ethical Theory within IS research, as well as the role of the researcher and dissemination routes to IS practice. The thesis provides an evaluation of the author's learning during the research project, and the contribution of the work to IS theory and practice.