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What does it mean to be 'critical' in IS research?

Brooke, Carole (2002) What does it mean to be 'critical' in IS research? Journal of Information Technology, 17 (2). pp. 49-57. ISSN 0268-3962

Full content URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/02683960210164336

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Abstract

This paper undertakes a preliminary review of the state of critical thinking in the fields of information systems and organizational analysis. It begins by addressing the question 'what is critical research?' showing how the definition has changed and broadened over time. Two key themes emerge from this discussion: our understanding of emancipation and the nature of unequal power relations in the workplace. The paper then goes on to identify a recent emerging tendency towards the use of Habermas in the specific area of critical IS inquiry. It considers some of the reasons for this apparent trend and warns against becoming locked into a particular discourse. The paper concludes with some thoughts on how we can continue to broaden our frameworks of thinking, illustrating this with reference to the work of Foucault

Additional Information:This paper undertakes a preliminary review of the state of critical thinking in the fields of information systems and organizational analysis. It begins by addressing the question 'what is critical research?' showing how the definition has changed and broadened over time. Two key themes emerge from this discussion: our understanding of emancipation and the nature of unequal power relations in the workplace. The paper then goes on to identify a recent emerging tendency towards the use of Habermas in the specific area of critical IS inquiry. It considers some of the reasons for this apparent trend and warns against becoming locked into a particular discourse. The paper concludes with some thoughts on how we can continue to broaden our frameworks of thinking, illustrating this with reference to the work of Foucault
Keywords:Information systems
Subjects:G Mathematical and Computer Sciences > G500 Information Systems
N Business and Administrative studies > N200 Management studies
Divisions:Lincoln International Business School
ID Code:532
Deposited On:22 Jun 2007

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