This book provides one of the first clear-headed assessments of information technology and organizational transformation. Its virtue is not so much in its recognition of the importance of the subject; speculations on this topic have been rampant for more than a decade. Rather, it is unusual and unusually useful, because it avoids speculation in favor of conceptually coherent accounts grounded in empirical study of actual organizations. The chapters contained in this volume move beyond the superficial glorification of information technology as an extraordinary instrument of social change, and straight to the heart of the mechanisms of change as they play out in everyday organizational life. In the process, they reaffirm that the real story of information technology in organizations is more about people than about technology. Taken together, they provide an important contribution to the intellectual foundations of one of the most interesting developments in decades.

Transforming Work through Information Technology: A Comparative Case Study of Geographic Information Systems in County Government

Transforming work through information technology: A comparative case study of geographic information systems in county government

It is commonly assumed that information technologies have the potential to transform social organizations. Through their capacity to gather, store, manipulate, and transmit information efficiently, information technologies may support more effective forms of organizational coordination and control and render traditional structures obsolete. Transforming organizations with information technologies is an important business objective because traditional structures are often ineffective in producing desired levels of productivity, customer service, employee welfare, and shareholder value. Scott Morton (1991) has argued that, in the future, all organizations will need to be transformed with computer-based technologies to be effective.

Yet the ...

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