Simulation in IS Research: Technique Underrepresented in the Field

Simulation in IS Research: Technique Underrepresented in the Field

Theresa M. Vitolo (Gannon University, USA) and Chris Coulston (Pennsylvania State University, USA)
Copyright: © 2004 |Pages: 11
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59140-144-5.ch014
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Abstract

Simulation has been a fundamental research approach in the social and physical sciences. Through the modeling, experimentation, and analysis processes of simulation, the functional dependencies in systems can be probed statistically. The approach has enabled social and physical science researchers to examine dynamically complex systems. Even though information systems (IS) can fall into both of categories of social or physical systems—depending upon the aspect of the system being analyzed – IS researchers have not embraced the paradigm. The reasons for simulation not being more common in IS research can be attributed to four points: the structure of IS curriculums, the level of modeling sophistication driving the research, the separation of the field’s IS developments from the physical reality of the usage of the systems, and the level of maturity with the field. The chapter presents the basic concepts for the construction and use of simulation, the need and potential for simulation in IS research, the reasons why IS research has not utilized simulation, and the way IS research can embrace simulation in the future.

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