The Current Status of the IS Discipline: A Survey of American and International Business Schools

The Current Status of the IS Discipline: A Survey of American and International Business Schools

Steven John Simon (Florida International University, USA) and S. Michael Wang (California State University, Chico, USA)
Copyright: © 1999 |Pages: 11
DOI: 10.4018/irmj.1999040101
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Abstract

Questions of IS’s status as an academic discipline have been debated within and outside the IS community since the inception of the field. Strangely, members of the IS community find ourselves asking those same questions as did our peers some 25 years ago. The community has answered critical questions relating to reference disciplines, dependent variables, and the building of a cumulative tradition. Yet we are still grappling with such issues as our status in relation to and interaction with other disciplines, IS practice in the business environment, the role of IS in business school curricula - and in some cases the survival of IS departments - and a new issue, our place in the developing international business arena. This study surveyed over 1,000 business school deans and IS department heads in the United States and over 50 overseas countries to determine the current status of the IS discipline. The survey queried respondents concerning the status of IS curricula and research issues in their institutions. Analysis indicates that differences exist between academic methodology in North American and International institutions in both curriculum and philosophical approaches to degree requirements. Universally, IS scholars believed that the future of IS as an academic discipline is more certain than in the fie ld’ s early years, although there is a wide range of opinions as to the optimum areas for academic exploration.

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