Advances in Design Research for Information Systems Minitrack

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This minitrack provides a venue for information systems (IS) design researchers to share their work and interact with likeminded scholars. Design research is a prominent form of engaged scholarship, which combines inquiry with a potential for action and intervention.

Design research may be viewed as having three major subfields, from which we welcome submissions:

  • Design theory research, which focuses on the development of theories about creating new or improved information systems based on kernel or grand theories
  • Design science research which focuses on creating ‘new-to-the-world’ IS artifacts
  • Science of design research which focuses on the study of how designers actually conduct design activities, e.g., science of design research

While specific interests interest is placed upon design research and design theorizing with respect to the three subfields described above, the minitrack welcomes submissions from the entire range of alternatives that deal with the question of integrating inquiry with the potential of creating and shaping alternative futures. Such work extends the boundaries of human and organizational capabilities by theorizing and/or creating new and innovative artifacts. The building and application of these designed artifacts produces knowledge and understanding of a problem domain and its solutions, which is then potentially transferable to other domains. In design science, the engagement is primarily focused on the design and evaluation of an artifact; learning through building with the aim to generate theoretical insights. This is often an iterative research process, often quite technical, and sometimes capitalizes on learning via both researcher and subject expertise within the context of the participants' social system. It can be a clinical method that puts IS researchers in an active supporting role for advanced practice. To this end we also seek implementable and grounded action frames for engaging in such generalizable inquiries.

Accordingly the scope of this mini track includes research contributions that arise from all three subfields of design research described above. This includes engaged approaches, studies of the practical use of design research approaches, the use of such approaches to expand theory, and conceptual foundations that significantly and cogently expand our understanding of the epistemology and methodology of such approaches and their philosophical underpinnings. These include:

  • Developing design artifacts and design theories
  • Evaluating and testing design artifacts and design theories
  • Different approaches to the design of artifacts and design theorizing

Minitrack Co-Chairs:

Tuure Tuunanen (Primary Contact)
University of Jyväskylä

Richard Baskerville
Georgia State University and Curtin University

Roman Beck
IT University of Copenhagen


Recent Submissions

Now showing 1 - 5 of 5
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    Why do you ask all those questions? Supporting client profiling in financial service encounters
    ( 2017-01-04) Kilic, Mehmet ; Dolata, Mateusz ; Schwabe, Gerhard
    Client data is key to provide personalized services and products. Therefore, banks go through great efforts to profile their clients during financial advisory service encounters. Since traditional pen-and-paper profiling does not satisfy the banks’ needs, they strive to digitalize this activity. This paper offers joint profiling as a solution: The advisor and the client jointly create a client’s profile using a shared display. However, test clients provided a mixed response to a first joint profiling prototype. They wondered, why the bank needs all this information. In a second iteration, joint profiling was augmented by task awareness, i.e., linking all profiled information to the client's goal. This task aware joint profiling was far better accepted by the clients. This paper offers research insights on the role of profiling in face-to-face advisory service encounters, on its acceptance by the clients, and on design principles for digital profiling in financial service encounters.
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    The State of Design – A Comprehensive Literature Review to Chart the Design Science Research Discourse
    ( 2017-01-04) Thakurta, Rahul ; Müller, Benjamin ; Ahlemann, Frederik ; Hoffmann, David
    Design science is an increasingly popular research paradigm in the information systems discipline. Despite a recognition of the design science research paradigm, questions are being raised about the nature of its existence and its contributions. Central to this argument is the understanding of the relationship between “theoretical research” and “design research” and the necessary implications for design. In this research, we contribute to this discourse by carrying out a structured literature review in order to appreciate the current state of the art in design science research. The results identify an in-congruence between the methodological guidelines informing the design and how the design is carried out in practice. On the basis of our observations on the design process, the theoretical foundations of design, and the design outcomes, we outline some research directions that we believe will contribute to methodically well-executed design science contributions in the future.
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    Re-Visiting IS Design Science Artifacts: Making a Case for Critical Realism
    ( 2017-01-04) uppström, elin
    In this paper critical realism is suggested as a \ suitable philosophical assumption to guide a \ separate, stand-alone retrospective evaluation of \ design science projects and artifacts. A main \ contribution of the paper is to argue that knowledge \ can be gained in retrospective evaluations of design \ science projects regardless of the success or nonsuccess \ of the project itself. Thereby, retrospective \ evaluation complements current evaluations that are \ mostly means-end focused. The argumentation is \ supported through re-visiting two e-government \ design science projects, which can be considered \ both as failures and successes depending on the \ framing. Critical realism puts focus on knowing \ through making and widens the use of design science \ in areas where utility is not the main goal. Future \ research should focus on providing more details on \ how a critical realism retrospective in design science \ should be carried out.
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    “Refactoring” Refactoring
    ( 2017-01-04) Waguespack, Leslie J ; Babb, Jeffry ; Yates, David J
    Code refactoring’s primary impetus is to control technical debt, a metaphor for the cost in software development due to the extraneous human effort needed to resolve confusing, obfuscatory, or hastily-crafted program code. While these issues are often described as causing “bad smells,” not all bad smells emanate from the code itself. Some (often the most pungent and costly) originate in the formation, or expressions, of the antecedent intensions the software proposes to satisfy. Paying down such technical debt requires more than grammatical manipulations of the code. Rather, refactoring in this case must attend to a more inclusive perspective; particularly how stakeholders perceive the artifact; and their conception of quality – their appreciative system. First, this paper explores refactoring as an evolutionary design activity. Second, we generalize, or “refactor,” the concept of code refactoring, beyond changes to code structure, to improving design quality by incorporating the stakeholders’ experience of the artifact as it relates to their intensions. Third, we integrate this refactored refactoring as the organizing principle of design as a reflective practice. The objective is to improve the clarity, understandability, maintainability, and extensibility manifest in the stakeholder intensions, in the artifact, and in their interrelationship!
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    Introduction to Advances in Design Research for Information Systems Minitrack
    ( 2017-01-04) Tuunanen, Tuure ; Baskerville, Richard ; Beck, Roman