Design Science: A Case Study in Information Systems Re-Engineering

Design Science: A Case Study in Information Systems Re-Engineering

Raul Valverde (Concordia University, Canada), Mark Toleman (University of Southern Queensland, Australia) and Aileen Cater-Steel (University of Southern Queensland, Australia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-040-0.ch012
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Abstract

Recently, many organisations have become aware of the limitations of their legacy systems to adapt to new technical requirements. Trends towards e-commerce applications, platform independence, reusability of prebuilt components, capacity for reconfiguration, and higher reliability have contributed to the need to update current systems. Consequently, legacy systems need to be re-engineered into new component-based systems. This chapter shows the use of the design science approach in information systems re-engineering research. In this study, design science and the Bunge-Wand-Weber (BWW) model are used as the main research frameworks to build and evaluate conceptual models generated by the component-based and traditional approaches in re-engineering a legacy system into a component-based information system. The objective of this evaluation is to verify that the re-engineered component-based model is capable of representing the same business requirements as the legacy system.
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Design Science Background

Design Science as an Information Systems Research Approach

The design science approach has a history of providing useful results in the evaluation of constructs and models in information systems (Hevner, March, Park, & Ram, 2004). This is in line with Nunamaker and Chen (1990) who classify design science in IS as applied research that applies knowledge to solve practical problems. March and Smith (1995) define design science as an attempt to create artifacts that serve human purposes, as opposed to natural and social sciences, which try to understand reality (Au, 2001).

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