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Title: The genesis of initiative formation in medium-sized enterprises : a capability-based perspective on QM standards -driven IS development in the Turkish automotive industry
Author: Boz, Mahmut
Awarding Body: Lancaster University
Current Institution: Lancaster University
Date of Award: 2011
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This thesis contributes to our understanding of how small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in developing countries cope with data-rich quality management (QM) concepts in terms of information systems (IS) provision over time, with particular reference to emergent bottom-up initiatives and semi-dynamic competencies. IS is frequently seen as the enabler of QM concepts, but rarely as a system whose necessity becomes apparent through the implementation of externally imposed QM concepts. This is of concern for SMEs in developing countries at the very early stage when IS competencies and infrastructure have yet to be developed and aligned. Although QM standards are accepted as data-rich technologies, there has been no empirical research on the implications of those concepts for IS development. The contributions made thus far have been based on theoretical and conceptual thinking only. This research adapts an intellectual framework from the strategic renewal literature and makes it applicable to bottom-up initiative formation in SMEs. The methodology chosen was that of detailed case studies conducted in three automotive SMEs in Turkey. Three research questions provide the focus and direction to investigate. the complexities of initiative formation and co-evolutionary systems development through theory and practice. In terms of results, we find that i) imposed QM concepts drive IS development ii) alignment quadrants of the strategic IS alignment model are still evolving iii) IS development is a bottom-up process involving mid-level managers as innovators and mediators and iv) the process of initiative formation is an adaptive process requiring the emergence of semidynamic competencies, a concept that is also an outcome of this thesis. These four findings are consolidated enabling us to make the fifth and ultimate contribution to the domain ofIS alignment paths in SMEs. One can now understand the underlying process of the 'efficiency to collaboration route' in Levy and Powell's (2005) strategic grid model for SMEs in developing countries. Practical insights cover key organisational and contextual concerns ranging from the role of middle managers and their credibility to strategic coherence and collective capacity. The findings are significant not only because they support various theories, but, more specifically, because they represent the outcome of a multi-disciplinary piece of research that highlights discrepancies between established theories of IS alignment and actual practice. This is not the full story as some of the women interviewed reported that they had to put off marriage for career and likewise, others put on hold or postponed career for family responsibilities. To maintain their positions or climb the professional ladder, they therefore, had to employ a range of strategies such as; working hard, focusing on research and publication for promotion purposes. The wider implications of these findings are discussed.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available