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Tro, hopp och IT: Stora och små berättelser från ett förändringsprojekt
Mälardalen University, School of Innovation, Design and Engineering.
2008 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other scientific)
Abstract [en]

Information technology (IT) is often assumed to be a prerequisite for the modern and developed organization, even though IT projects are described as problematic in practice. Starting with this paradox and using a narrative method, this study focuses on how, through their stories, employees of an organization ascribe different meanings to IT.

The study, which entailed following an IT project at an insurance company, illustrates how the employees of the organization actively ascribe various and contradictory meanings to IT. On the one hand, preference is given to one grand narrative of IT as a tool in the service of the organization. This grand narrative ascribes the meaning of achieving management, control, and change, which is supposed to help the organization on its way toward a more successful future. Great responsibility is transferred to the technology for attaining the desired impact in the organization, which can backfire, especially against project management as they are hit with demands to fulfill the expectations for IT. On the other hand, employees wrestle to control the project, which they describe as unwieldy and unmanageable. The desired management, control, and change are described as elusive.

The IT project has in this way come to be developed in a field of tension between contradictory meanings, where problems and solutions are constructed over time. The employees thus become, to an extent, victims of the meanings they have reproduced, something that can be described as double-edged power. The employees who were the keenest advocates of IT are also those who have the greatest difficulty accepting the failure of the technology to live up to expectations. In parallel, the study illustrates the employees’ opportunities to actively engage themselves in storytelling that complement and challenge the dominating meanings in the organization.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Akademin för innovation, design och teknik , 2008. , p. 260
Series
Mälardalen University Press Dissertations, ISSN 1651-4238 ; 56
National Category
Other Mechanical Engineering
Research subject
Industriell ekonomi och organisation
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-534ISBN: 978-91-85485-75-8 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:mdh-534DiVA, id: diva2:121091
Public defence
2008-03-14, Delta, R-huset, Högskoleplan, Västerås, 13:15
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2008-02-08 Created: 2008-02-08

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fulltext(1330 kB)1781 downloads
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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf