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The appropriation of technology in the process of an imposed organisational transformation: a relational approach

Alharbi, Abdulhafeez 2015. The appropriation of technology in the process of an imposed organisational transformation: a relational approach. PhD Thesis, Cardiff University.
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The purpose of this thesis is to contribute to existing explanations of the organisational outcomes of Information Technology (IT). In studying this phenomenon, prior research and theory have taken different approaches. At the one end, technology is seen as a major agent of change determining the structure and behaviour of organisations and their members. In stark opposition to this perspective, the tradition of social construction of technology represents IT outcomes as the product of human interpretations, intentions, and voluntary practices. Recent debates in the field have attempted to go beyond these two extreme positions in order to admit both the role of technology, and the social context into which it is introduced. In line with this emerging literature, this research devises an original conceptual framework to allow for the incorporation of multiple entities and the consideration of the dynamic interaction amongst them. This relational approach is employed to examine IT appropriations and the ensuing organisational change in a case of implementing an IT system in three organisational units of a large airline firm. The evidence from this research reaffirms the significance of human agency in mediating IT outcomes. It also demonstrates how the exercise of agency is informed by both the internal and the external environment of the organisation, as well as by the technology's characteristics. The thesis‘s main contribution is that it provides a sociological account of an instance of IT-associated change that avoids both technological determinism and extreme social constructivism.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Business (Including Economics)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HF Commerce
Funders: HE Saudi Arabia
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 March 2016
Last Modified: 15 Oct 2016 04:31

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