Adman, Peter and Warren, Lorraine
Participatory sociotechnical design of organizations and information systems – an adaptation of ETHICS methodology
Journal of Information Technology, 15, (1), . (doi:10.1080/026839600344393).
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This paper examines a practical adaptation of the ETHICS methodology used in redesigning an information technology (IT) support service in an academic setting. The purpose of the project was to design appropriate organizational structures and functions and an accompanying information system (IS), to increase the effectiveness of the existing service. A participative sociotechnical approach was adopted for the entire design process which was carried out by the practitioners themselves. The staff’s views were elicited during informal participatory group sessions as well as in one-to-one informal discussions. While ETHICS was the overall guiding methodology for the design, QUICKethics was used as a complementary means of analysing the requirements of the new IS. This paper describes the methodology used and the design process; it reflects on the adaptation and its match with the ETHICS methodology, exploring the claimed association with the viable systems methodology and concludes with suggestions for further research.
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