IT Software Development Offshoring: A Multi-Level Theoretical Framework and Research Agenda
The offshoring of IT development is a significant global economic phenomenon. It influences the lives and fortunes of individuals, organizations, and nations/regions. However, because offshoring so broadly affects different stakeholders, a multi-level theory is required so that influences that may positively affect one set of stakeholders while negatively affecting another are not misinterpreted by an overly narrow analysis. This article discusses how IT development is differentiated from other global labor sourcing and argues that it is worthy of investigation as an offshoring domain. The article proposes that the study of IT development offshoring needs to recognize precursors and results as they affect individuals, organizations, and nation/regions, and presents examples and discussion in each of these areas. The article further argues that the domain of IT development offshoring is incomplete without consideration of interactions between the individual and nation/region as well as between the organization and nation/region. The article concludes by considering the complexity of presenting a complete picture in this domain and suggesting some areas for future research.
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