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Information Systems Evaluation: Methodologies and Practical Case Studies

Information Systems Evaluation: Methodologies and Practical Case Studies
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Author(s): Si Chen (University of Sheffield, UK), Nor Mardziah Osman (University of Sheffield, UK) and Guo Chao Alex Peng (University of Sheffield, UK)
Copyright: 2013
Pages: 22
Source title: Information Systems Research and Exploring Social Artifacts: Approaches and Methodologies
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Pedro Isaias (Portuguese Open University, Portugal) and Miguel Baptista Nunes (University of Sheffield, UK)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-2491-7.ch017

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Abstract

Due to the prevalent use of Information Systems (IS) in modern organisations, evaluation research in this field is becoming more and more important. In light of this, a set of rigorous methodologies were developed and used by IS researchers and practitioners to evaluate the increasingly complex IS implementation used. Moreover, different types of IS and different focusing perspectives of the evaluation require the selection and use of different evaluation approaches and methodologies. This chapter aims to identify, explore, investigate, and discuss the various key methodologies that can be used in IS evaluation from different perspectives, namely in nature (e.g. summative vs. formative evaluation) and in strategy (e.g. goal-based, goal-free, and criteria-based evaluation). Six case studies are also presented and discussed in this chapter to illustrate how the different IS evaluation methodologies can be applied in practices. The chapter concludes that evaluation methodologies should be selected depending on the nature of the IS and the specific goals and objectives of the evaluation. Nonetheless, it is also proposed that formative criteria-based evaluation and summative criteria-based evaluation are currently among the more widely used in IS research. The authors suggest that the combined used of one or more of these approaches can be applied at different stages of the IS life cycle in order to generate more rigorous and reliable evaluation outcomes. Moreover, results and outcomes of IS evaluation research will not just be useful in practically guiding actions to improve the current system, but can also be used to generate new knowledge and theory to be adopted by future IS research.

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