Bridging the gap among information technology professionals, researchers, academicians and the user, end-user computing has become a mainstream focus within present and previous years. Now more than ever, the information technology landscape is growing with emerging research and new discoveries to expand to all points of the globe. Profoundly traversing all facets of compound societies, end-user computing implicates and impacts not only information science, political science, healthcare systems, international relations, sociology and more, but branches out to the every-day user as well.
During this period of time, numerous researchers and academicians have developed a variety of techniques, methodologies, and measurement tools that have allowed them to develop, deliver and at the same time evaluate the effectiveness of several areas of end-user computing. The explosion of these technologies and methodologies have created an abundance of new, state-of-the-art literature related to all aspects of this expanding discipline, allowing researchers and practicing educators to learn about the latest discoveries in the field of end-user computing.
Due to rapid technological changes that are continually taking place, it is a constant challenge for researchers and experts in this discipline to stay abreast of the far-reaching effects of end-user computing and to be able to develop and deliver more innovative methodologies and techniques, utilizing new technological innovation. In order to provide the most comprehensive, in-depth, and recent coverage of all issues related to this global phenomenon, as well as to offer a single reference source on all conceptual, methodological, technical and managerial issues, as well as the opportunities, future challenges and emerging trends related to end-user computing, Information Science Reference is pleased to offer a four-volume reference collection on this rapidly growing discipline, in order to empower students, researchers, academicians, and practitioners with a comprehensive understanding of the most critical areas within this field of study.
Entitled End-User Computing: Concepts, Methodologies, Tools, and Applications, this collection is organized in eight distinct sections, providing the most wide-ranging coverage of topics such as: (1) Fundamental Concepts and Theories; (2) Development and Design Methodologies; (3) Tools and Technologies; (4) Utilization and Application; (5) Organizational and Social Implications; (6) Managerial Impact; (7) Critical Issues; and (8) Emerging Trends. The following provides a summary of what is covered in each section of this multi-volume reference collection:
Section 1, Fundamental Concepts and Theories, serves as a foundation for this extensive reference tool by addressing crucial theories essential to the understanding of end-user computing. Chapters such as, Privacy, Risk Perception, and Expert Online Behavior: An Exploratory Study of Household End Users by J. Drennan, G. Sullivan, and J. Previte, as well as Gender and End-User Computing by Laura Beckwith, Margaret Burnett, and Shraddha Sorte provide an excellent framework in which to position end-user computing within the field of information science and technology. Perceptions of End-Users on the Requirements in Personal Firewall Software: An Exploratory Study, by Sunil Hazari, offers excellent insight into the critical incorporation of information security into end-user computing, while chapters such as, An Open Source Primer by Brian Still address some of the basic, yet principle stumbling blocks of issues within end-user computing. With over 20 chapters comprising this foundational section, the reader can learn and chose from a compendium of expert research on the elemental theories underscoring the end-user computing discipline.
Section 2, Development and Design Methodologies, provides in-depth coverage of conceptual architecture frameworks to provide the reader with a comprehensive understanding of the emerging technological developments within the field of end-user computing. Development Methodologies and Users by Shawren Singh and Paula Kotzé offers research fundamentals imperative to the understanding of research and developmental processes within end-user computing. From broad examinations to specific discussions on end users such as, Elaine H. Ferneley’s, Covert End User Development: A Study of Success, the research found within this section spans the discipline while offering detailed, specific discussions. From basic designs to abstract development, chapters such as Framework for User Perception of Effective E-Tail Web Sites by Sang M. Lee, Pairin Katerattanakul, and Soongoo Hong, and End-User Perceptions of the Benefits and Risks of End-User Web Development, by Tanya McGill and Chris Klisc, serve to expand the reaches of development and design methodologies within the end-user computing community. This section includes over 35 contributions from researchers throughout the world on the topic of end-users within the information science and technology field.
Section 3, Tools and Technologies, presents an extensive coverage of various tools and technologies available in the field of end-user computing that practitioners and academicians alike can utilize to develop different techniques. Chapters, such as Jason Sargent, Carole Alcock, Lois Burgess, Joan Cooper, and Damian Ryan’s, PDAs as Mobile-Based Health Information Deployment Platforms for Ambulatory Care: Clinician-Centric End-User Considerations, enlighten readers about clinician-centric end-user acceptance toward the adoption of personal digital assistants as mobile-based health information deployment platforms within ambulatory care service settings, whereas chapters like, Trusting Computers Through Trusting Humans: Software Verification in a Safety-Critical Information System by Alison Adam and Paul Spedding, explore trusting automatically generated program code—an increasingly pertinent research arena. It is through these rigorously researched chapters that the reader is provided with countless examples of the up-and-coming tools and technologies emerging from end-user information technology. With more than 25 chapters, this section offers a broad treatment of some of the many tools and technologies within the end-user community.
Section 4, Utilization and Application, discusses a variety of applications and opportunities available that can be considered by practitioners in developing viable and effective end-user programs and processes. This section includes more than 15 chapters, such as Lessons in Implementing a Learning System in a University: The Academic User Perspective by Fiona Darroch and Mark Toleman, which examines the implementation of two learning management systems (LMS) in a university environment. Additional chapters, such as Ron Thompson, Deborah Compeau, and Chris Higgins’ Intentions to Use Information Technologies: An Integrative Model, propose an integrative model explaining intentions to use in information technology in order to obtain a clearer picture of how intentions are formed. Also considered in this section is the potential use of biometrics across a wide variety of organizational contexts as outlined in Determinig the Intention to Use Biometric Devices: An Application and Extension of the Technology Acceptance Model, by Tabitha James, Taner Pirim, Katherine Boswell, Brian Reithel, and Reza Barkhi. Contributions included in this section provide excellent coverage of today’s end-user community and how research into information technology is impacting the social fabric of our present day global village.
Section 5, Organizational and Social Implications, includes a wide range of research pertaining to the social and organizational impact of end-user computing in information technologies around the world. Introducing this section is Penelope Markellou, Maria Rigou, and Spiros Sirmakessis’ chapter entitled, A Closer Look to the Online Consumer Behavior. This chapter presents the overall consumer purchase decision cycle and investigates the issues that affect Web users, from selecting a specific e-shop to the delivery of the product and the overall assessment of the shopping experience. Additional chapters included in this section, such as Super Users and Local Developers: The Organization of End-User Development in an Accounting Company by Hege-René Hansen Åsand and Anders I. Mørch, present a case study following the activities of super users and local developers during the adoption of a new business application by an accounting firm in Scandinavia. Also investigating a concern within the field of enduser computing is Michael J. Mullany’s, Relating Cognitive Problem-Solving Style to User Resistance, which explores cognitive problem-solving style and its impact on user resistance, based on the premise that the greater the cognitive difference between users and developers, the greater the user resistance is likely to be. The 20 chapters in this section offer insight on the integration of end-user technologies and computational access for all.
Section 6, Managerial Impact, presents contemporary coverage of the social implications of end-user computing, more specifically related to the corporate and managerial utilization of information technologies and applications, and how these technologies can be facilitated within organizations. Core ideas such as training and continuing education of human resources in modern organizations are discussed through these chapters. Supporting Work Practice through End-User Development Environments, by M. F. Costabile, D. Fogli, R. Lanzilotti, P. Mussio, and A. Piccinno, illustrates how a certain methodology is applied to a project for the development of an interactive system in the medical domain. Equally as crucial, chapters, such as Employees’ Attitudes Toward Telecommuting: An Empirical Investigation in the Egyptian Governornate of Dakahlia by Ahmed Gad Abdel-Wahab, explore the attitude of Egyptian information workers toward the concept of telecommuting and to examine the relationships between such attitude and workers’ expectations of their productivity and job satisfaction. Also found within this section is a chapter by Tor J. Larsen and Øystein Sørebø, titled Impact of Personal Innovativeness on the Use of the Internet Among Employees at Work. This chapter investigates the theoretical proposition that personal IT innovativeness will positively impact the use of novel computer technologies. The research model used within this chapter includes the individual traits of age, gender, experience with IT, and educational level.
Section 7, Critical Issues, contains over 10 chapters addressing issues such as online consumer behavior, Web users, virtual reality users, user ethics, and Web services to name a few. Within these chapters, the reader is presented with an in-depth analysis of the most current and relevant issues within this growing field of study. Christy MK. Cheung, Gloria WW. Chan, and Moez Limayem’s A Critical Review of Online Consumer Behavior: Empirical Research provides an exhaustive review of prior theoretical literature and provides an integrative model of online consumer behavior, while Ex Ante Evaluations of Alternative Data Structures for End User Queries: Theory and Experimental Test, by Paul L. Bowen, Fiona H. Rohde, and Jay Basford, theorizes that the data structure that yields the lowest weighted average complexity for a representative sample of information requests is the most desirable data structure for end user queries. Crucial questions are addressed such as that presented in Bernd Carsten Stahl’s chapter, Responsibility for Information Assurance and Privacy: A Problem of Individual Ethics?, which explores the question of whether individual responsibility is a useful construct to address ethical issues of this security and privacy.
The concluding section of this authoritative reference tool, Emerging Trends, highlights research potential within the field of end-user computing, while exploring uncharted areas of study for the advancement of the discipline. Introducing this section is a chapter titled, The Past, Present, and Future of End-User Performance by I. M. Jawahar, which sets the stage for future research directions and topical suggestions for continued debate. Providing an alternative view of end-user computing is the chapter, Believe It or Not: Virtual Religion in the 21st Century by Susan E. George. This chapter considers the development of virtual communities while focusing upon virtual religion and its impact on humanity. Another debate which currently finds itself at the forefront of research within this field is presented by Nijaz Bajgoric’s research, Toward Always-On Enterprise Information Systems, which presents a framework for the implementation of continuous computing technologies for improving business continuity. The framework is presented within a systemic view of developing an “always-on” enterprise information system. Found in these chapters concluding this exhaustive multi-volume set are areas of emerging trends and suggestions for future research within this rapidly expanding discipline.
Although the primary organization of the contents in this multi-volume set is based on its eight sections, offering a progression of coverage of the important concepts, methodologies, technologies, applications, social issues, and emerging trends, the reader can also identify specific contents by utilizing the extensive indexing system listed at the end of each volume. Furthermore to ensure that the scholar, researcher, and educator have access to the entire contents of this multi-volume set as well as additional coverage that could not be included in the print version of this publication, the publisher will provide unlimited multi-user electronic access to the online aggregated database of this collection for the life of the edition, free of charge when a library purchases a print copy. This aggregated database provides far more contents than what can be included in the print version in addition to continual updates. This unlimited access, coupled with the continuous updates to the database ensures that the most current research is accessible knowledge seekers.
End-user computing as a discipline has witnessed fundamental changes during the past two decades, allowing information seekers around the globe to have access to information which two decades ago, was inaccessible. In addition to this transformation, many traditional organizations and business enterprises have taken advantage of the technologies offered by the development of end-user technologies in order to expand and augment their existing programs and practices. This has allowed practitioners and researchers to serve their customers, employees, and stakeholders more effectively and efficiently in the modern virtual world. With continued technological innovations in information and communication technology and with on-going discovery and research into newer and more innovative techniques and applications, the end-user computing discipline will continue to witness an explosion of information within this rapidly growing field.
The diverse and comprehensive coverage of end-user technologies in this four-volume authoritative publication will contribute to a better understanding of all topics, research, and discoveries in this developing, significant field of study. Furthermore, the contributions included in this multi-volume collection series will be instrumental in the expansion of the body of knowledge in this enormous field, resulting in a greater understanding of the fundamentals while fueling the research initiatives in emerging fields. We at Information Science Reference, along with the editor of this collection and the publisher, hope that this multi-volume collection will become instrumental in the expansion of the discipline and will promote the continued growth of end-user computing.