Collaborative work is increasingly being mediated by distributed information technologies such as the Internet. However, it is difficult to make the virtual professional communities, in which this collaboration takes place, operate successfully. One of the reasons is that users are not sufficiently in control of the ongoing specification process of their continuously changing network information systems. Furthermore, changes in such an information system need to be legitimate, in the sense that they are both meaningful and acceptable to all members of the community. The focus of this thesis is on developing an approach to assist virtual professional communities in the legitimate user-driven specification of their network information systems. The main results of the research are a theoretical framework that can be used to describe and analyze legitimate user-driven system specification. Furthermore, the RENISYS (REsearch Network Information SYstem Specification) method has been developed in which these theoretic insights are used to support the actual specification process. Two cases have been analyzed using this method: one case concerned the Global Research Network on Sustainable Development, the other was about the development of an electronic law journal. The thesis is concluded with a description of a prototype tool implementing the RENISYS method.
|Qualification||Doctor of Philosophy|
|Award date||1 Oct 1999|
|Place of Publication||Tilburg|
|Publication status||Published - 1999|