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An interdisciplinary study of information systems: Christopher Alexander and IS failure

Author

Listed:
  • Chris Kimble

    (University of York)

  • William Selby

    (British Telecom)

Abstract

This paper describes work carried out at the University of York; its contents do not represent the views or opinions of BT. It provides an example of how insights into the field of IS can be gained by looking at it from the perspective of other academic disciplines. Based on the idea that physical and virtual office spaces exist to serve parallel organisational requirements, it is argued that designers of information systems (IS) should be able to learn from the experience of architects in order to improve their methods and redefine their objectives. Firstly, the work of Christopher Alexander is reviewed to show how his work on architectural patterns has been of value to the designers object-oriented systems. Secondly, similarities in the literature between notions of failure in architecture and IS design are identified. These are then examined through interviews with practitioners to establish the relevance of the approach. Finally, the area that Alexander described as ‘the quality without a name’ is highlighted as a topic for further research.

Suggested Citation

  • Chris Kimble & William Selby, 2005. "An interdisciplinary study of information systems: Christopher Alexander and IS failure," Development and Comp Systems 0505006, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpdc:0505006
    Note: Type of Document - pdf; pages: 10
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    File URL: https://econwpa.ub.uni-muenchen.de/econ-wp/dev/papers/0505/0505006.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Chris Kimble & Paul Hildreth & David J Grimshaw, 2005. "The Role of Contextual Clues in the Creation of Information Overload," Game Theory and Information 0504003, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Paul Hildreth & Peter Wright & Chris Kimble, 2005. "Knowledge Management: Are We Missing Something?," Industrial Organization 0504007, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Information Systems; Patterns; Virtual Office; Christopher Alexander;

    JEL classification:

    • O3 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights
    • O32 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Management of Technological Innovation and R&D

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