The Moderating Effect of Culture on the Success Factors of Information Systems Projects - Essay Example

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Universiteit van Amsterdam Roetersstraat 11 1018 WB Amsterdam The Netherlands Faculty of Economics and Business (FEB) Master Thesis "The Moderating Effect of Culture on the Success Factors of Information Systems Projects" Abstract Information Systems has become a core concept in contemporary organizations…
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Download file to see previous pages Although a wide variety of factors can affect this phenomenon, this paper examines the cultural factor. This study provides an understanding of cultural impacts from the national level, based on Hofstede’s and Trompenaars models of culture. The research tries to identify if the differences existing between the countries can affect success factors of Information Systems implementation; these factors include learning, incorporating the user into the design, the communication and finally the distributed work -- all giving useful insights for the design and use of these systems. The research design is situated within the theoretical constructs of Trompenaars and Hofstede who both advanced sociological notions of culture as contextually related to international business interactions. These models inform the research’s overall approach, as evidenced in the utilization of interview data sources. The interview subjects reflect categorical distinctions as influenced by these theorist’s frameworks. In these regards, four individuals from Greek and four individuals four Dutch culture will be interviewed as they cultural distinctions represent significant diversity of thought and perspective. Furthermore, the study follows Trompenaars and Hofstede in interviewing individuals from different levels of the corporate hierarchy within both of these cultural climates. These semi-structured interviews will be analyzed through qualitative description methods. Furthermore, a theory driven approach thematic code approach as articulated by Boyatzis (1998) is implemented as a means of structuring the qualitative analysis of these interviews. Table of Contents Table of Contents 2 CHAPTER 1: INTRODUCTION Most of the literature concerned with Information Systems treats them as a unified and universal subject. This approach can create serious misunderstandings and is one of the important factors that have caused the failure of many Information Systems projects. Existing theories of Information Systems use are criticized for lacking cultural sensitivity (Stolh, 2001). They have not foreseen that all these various systems are going to be used in different organizations and countries where perceptions and ways of acting can severely vary. As such, preferences are not unified into a standard model, even though norms and ways of doing things can vary strongly form culture to culture.While technology itself is compelling, emerging Information Systems are used by people in social contexts, so it is critical to explore how people belonging to different cultures are affecting and being affected by Information Systems (Sornes, Stephens, Browning & S?tre, 2004). What is currently known is that comparisons between cultures are very dissimilar (e.g. US and Japan) (Sornes, Stephens, Browning & S?tre, 2004). A large amount of research has taken as subject countries with an Anglo-Saxon background. Within the EU a large number of countries with diverse cultures exist without an Anglo-Saxon background. The research will be based in two of these countries (Greece and The Nederland). Information System projects involve group-oriented activities, organized and executed in teams, therefore, they are subject to all the benefits and problems of group dynamics, interactions, coordination, and communication (Ewusi-Mensah, 1997). Some of the underlining problems are managerial, technical, inappropriate economic evaluation techniques, but also culture related factors. Developing Information ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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