An Actor-Network Analysis of a Case of Development and Implementation of IT Strategy

An Actor-Network Analysis of a Case of Development and Implementation of IT Strategy

Tiko Iyamu (Tshwane University of Technology, South Africa) and Arthur Tatnall (Victoria University, Australia)
DOI: 10.4018/jantti.2009062303

Abstract

Increasingly, many organizations are highly dependent on support from Information Technology (IT). Even though Carr has controversially argued that IT does not matter, there seems to be prima facie evidence that even the most ambitious business vision still needs IT to enable it. As such, there has been much focus and emphasis on technologies, and less attention on non-technical components in the development and implementation of IT strategy. This study is focused on the connection between the technical and nontechnical, including the relationships between actors in the development and implementation of IT strategy. This article describes how Actor-Network Theory (ANT) was employed to investigate the impact of non-technical factors on the development and implementation of IT strategy in an organization. ANT was used as it can provide a useful perspective on the importance of relationships between both human and non-human actors. Another example: design and implementation of a B-B web portal, is offered for comparison.
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Research Methodology

Qualitative, interpretive case study research methodology was employed in the study, which involved an insurance organisation in South Africa. An interpretive approach was adopted to explore the relationship between actors in the development and implementation of IT strategy in the organisation, and the analysis was done through the Translation perspective of Actor Network Theory to investigate the impact of non-technical factors on the development and implementation of IT strategy.

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