Researcher perspective in the IS discipline : an empirical study of articles in the basket of 8 journals

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1515-1541
Journal / PublicationInformation Technology and People
Issue number6
Online published30 Aug 2020
Publication statusPublished - 2020


Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to explore the nature of “researcher perspective” in articles published in the AIS Basket of 8 journals. 
Design/methodology/approach - Purposive sampling: descriptive analysis of 659 articles published in three complete years of each of the eight leading journals (2001, 2008, 2015). 
Findings - When observing phenomena, IS researchers mostly adopt the perspective of one of the stakeholders in the activities, commonly that of the sponsor of the information system that is in focus. 96% of relevant articles adopted a single-perspective approach, and 93% of those were oriented towards the system sponsor. 
Research limitations/implications - The discipline has not been exploiting opportunities to deliver greater value firstly through the adoption of perspectives other than that of the system sponsor, and secondly through dual- and multi-perspective research. Further, the ignoring of the viewpoints of other stakeholders is inconsistent with the requirements of the recently-adopted AIS Code of Ethics. 
Practical implications - The dominance of single-perspective/system-sponsor-viewpoint research greatly constrains the benefits that IS research can deliver to IS practitioners and to the world at large. 
Originality/value - The authors are not aware of any prior investigation into the nature of researcher perspective. We contend that an appreciation of the current bias is essential if IS research is to adapt, and thereby make far more useful contributions to practice.

Research Area(s)

  • Bibliometrics, Content analysis, Empirical study, IS journal, IS professionals, Perception