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Approaching the intangible benefits of a boundary object
Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Computer and System science.
2014 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Today´s information society is constantly increasing the quantity of digital information that organisations have access to and depend on. Despite this dependency, few descriptions exist of the benefits which this digital information can provide the organisation with. Examples of what the organisation can use the information for include business intelligence or in a business process. The absence of such benefit descriptions results in missed opportunities in organisational management and a failure to cultivate the artefact. In terms of a practical operational work role, this means that the artefact just exists and that there are no decisions, communication and discussions connected to it. Earlier research about benefits in the Information Systems field is focused on describing the process of finding benefit factors from different IT investments and how these investments can be measured financially. The result of this was that it was only the measurable benefits that were taken into consideration. Later benefit management research has shown interest in the intangible benefit factors as well and added this as an activity in the evaluation process. Today´s view is that the benefit consists both of tangible and intangible benefit factors. This thesis emphasises benefit factors found by means of qualitative research in organisations producing Technical Information (TI). TI isinformation connected to goods and services and is a part of a product. The intangible benefit factors found which are connected to TI are semantic interoperability and knowledge. Semantic interoperability is beneficial both for the organisation and the individuals – in the first case exemplified by a uniform working process and in the second as efficiency in the internal communication. Knowledge also provides benefit both to the organisation and the individuals – the organisation can operate without depending on certain individuals and information gives the individuals mobility in their profession.The next part in the thesis discusses information management´simpact on benefit factors. In the case of an autocratic approach, it is the organisation that benefits most, whereas a decentralised management style provides the individual co-workers with a greater number of benefit factors. This proves that information management is an important and decisive ingredient, and that it affects benefit factors.One step in the direction of converting the intangible benefit factors into tangible ones is to visualise them. In this work the theoreticallens provided by a boundary object has been used. This lens adds a qualitative view on cross-boundary information and has efficiency approaches. These approaches are the syntactical, semantic andpragmatic. Via interpretations from the thesis´s two empirical cases, those approaches are "measured" by interpretations and visualised by the three leaves of a clover. This gives the opportunity to describewhat information efficiency, in this case connected to a positiveexpectation, can contribute to the organisation or the individuals. By this procedure, different cases or time aspects can be compared,thereby providing a basis for decision-making, communication and discussion. Future research in this area can be made in different directions – one is to investigate whether the intangible benefit factors can be turned into measurable ones. In this way, the internal organisation can be provided with better knowledge of the digital information's impact. Another research direction is to investigate how the passage of time affects the benefit factors that digital information gives the organisation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Sundsvall: Mid Sweden University , 2014. , 66 p.
Series
Mid Sweden University licentiate thesis, ISSN 1652-8948 ; 107
National Category
Information Systems, Social aspects
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-21576ISBN: 978-91-87557-22-4 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:miun-21576DiVA: diva2:704465
Supervisors
Available from: 2014-03-12 Created: 2014-03-12 Last updated: 2014-03-12Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Intraorganizational benefits from product configuration information: a complementary model
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Intraorganizational benefits from product configuration information: a complementary model
2012 (English)In: Proceedings of International Design Conference, DESIGN / [ed] Marjanovic Dorian, Storga Mario, Pavkovic Neven, Bojcetic Nenad, 2012, 83-92 p.Conference paper, (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The configuration management (CM) of products has a long tradition but among practitioners the benefits of CM are not clearly expressed. Our empirical study shows example of benefits of CM (process related) and PCI (information related) that not have been identified in earlier research. Hence we suggest that a model of benefits related to CM really should be including benefits related to both CM and PCI. The model is a contribution since practitioners can use it order to strengthen CM’s position in the organization.

Keyword
Benefit, intraorganizational, configuration management
National Category
Social Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-17770 (URN)2-s2.0-84879713874 (Scopus ID)
Conference
12th International Design Conference, DESIGN 2012; Dubrovnik; Croatia; 21 May 2012 through 24 May 2012; Code 97426
Funder
EU, European Research Council
Available from: 2012-12-16 Created: 2012-12-16 Last updated: 2014-03-12Bibliographically approved
2. A semiotic perspective on semantics interoperability
Open this publication in new window or tab >>A semiotic perspective on semantics interoperability
2012 (English)Conference paper, (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

While information technology enables us to access more material than ever before, we need to come to grips with the disagreeable fact that data is not information. Sharing data without safeguarding comprehension may lead to confusion at best and disaster at worst. The issue at hand is one of ensuring semantic interoperability between actors from disparate contexts. Research into this problem is plentiful, but typically focused around specific subject matters, limiting its appeal to a limited range of scholars and practitioners. Based upon a literary study, we identify two extreme approaches to managing semantic interoperability. These are denoted top-down and bottom-up. We illustrate real world instances of these approaches using the TFI-model based on a case study encompassing two organizations. Our theoretical model is found to be a viable lens through which to generalize and interpret issues pertaining to semantic interoperability between human actors. We therefore see a need for further research into human-based on semantic interoperability.

Keyword
Semantic Interoperability, top-down, bortom-up, TFI-model, semiotics
National Category
Information Systems
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-17774 (URN)
Conference
IRIS35, Sigtuna, August 17-20 2012
Available from: 2012-12-20 Created: 2012-12-16 Last updated: 2014-03-12Bibliographically approved
3. Exploiting Information: Seeking Long-term Preservation of organisational knowledge
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Exploiting Information: Seeking Long-term Preservation of organisational knowledge
2013 (English)Conference paper, (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Long-term preservation of organisational knowledge gives the business opportunities to reuse stored knowledge. This preservation of knowledge is present both in the organisation as such, found explicitly in the organisational stock, and also in the individual workers, implicit in their flow of action. Theoretically have the reuse of knowledge been named organisational memory and also been addressed in knowledge management. In a single case-study of a manufacturing company, the authors study the utilisation of product configuration information (PCI) and its role in meeting requirements on long-time preservation of product-related knowledge. This structured and standardised information is used throughout the organisation, serving as a base for both organisational and individual knowledge for the entire company. Since the information has been used in the same way for decades it is a part of the organisation´s culture and influences structures and procedures connected to the information base. The result of the study implies that usage of PCI grants the individual worker a high degree of task-related freedom as well as intra-organisational mobility. The downside for the individuals is the long time period it takes to get familiar with PCI due to its complexity. For the organisation as such, PCI provides a stable stock of knowledge which is available over extended periods of time, drastically reducing dependence upon individual workers.

Keyword
organisational memory, knowledge management, long-term preservation of knowledge, product configuration information
National Category
Information Systems, Social aspects
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-19864 (URN)
Conference
22nd Nordic Academy of Management Conference; University of Iceland, Reykjavik, Iceland;21-23 Aug 2013.
Available from: 2013-09-13 Created: 2013-09-13 Last updated: 2014-03-12Bibliographically approved
4. Information management, Lean and efficiency:  are we focusing on the customer?
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Information management, Lean and efficiency:  are we focusing on the customer?
2013 (English)Conference paper, (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to examine what happens with the internal view an organisation has on information management when a holistic view is diminished into a blinkered view and the consequences it conveys for the customer. The customer consequences are divided into two parts – creation of external customers’ values and creation of value for the internal customer explored in terms of efficiency.

Methodology/approach – Interviews with both outsourced co-workers and project leaders still in the organization.

Findings – The organisations lack of listening to the external customer affects all three areas lifted in the analysis. The studied organisations have great opportunities for developing their process for producing TI, both regarding their mutual relationship as well as in regards to the external customer with the help of Lean and by applying a more holistic view on the production of Technical Information.

Keywords – Information management, Lean, Customer value, Technical Information, Efficiency

Paper type – Case study

Keyword
Information management, Lean, Customer value, Technical Information, Efficiency
National Category
Information Systems, Social aspects
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-19866 (URN)
Conference
16th QMOD-ICQSS; International conference quality and service sciences;4th-6th September 2013;Portoroz, Slovenia
Available from: 2013-09-13 Created: 2013-09-13 Last updated: 2016-12-02Bibliographically approved
5. A generalized view of the nature of Benefit of Information
Open this publication in new window or tab >>A generalized view of the nature of Benefit of Information
2013 (English)Conference paper, (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Seeking out and understanding the benefits of information are essential to an organization. Internal in an organization it is important to understand created benefit in order to communicate, prioritize and increase or decrease prioritization in strategically important business areas. In modern society digitalized information is an area that is on the increase in enterprises, as is the knowledge that information is of importance. Therefore there should be a demand for understanding and measuring the beneficial factors that information gives an organization. In this study, empirical material was collected in a literature study from journals highly ranked in the Information Systems Area and with special focus on the benefit of information. The perspective of the study has been intra organizational. The purpose is to derive found benefit factors and use them as a basis to discuss and problematize on the nature of benefit of information and hereby give organizations help to understand this area.

Keyword
Benefit, value, digitalised information, information management
National Category
Information Systems, Social aspects
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-19865 (URN)
Conference
22nd Nordic Academy of Management Conference; University of Iceland, Reykjavik, Iceland;21-23 Aug 2013
Available from: 2013-09-13 Created: 2013-09-13 Last updated: 2014-04-24Bibliographically approved

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