Is Information Systems a Science?
The information systems discipline has been compared with the physical and biological sciences, suggesting that information systems sits in the same academic space as physical and natural sciences. This suggestion supported by the language and perception expressed in journals such as the Transactions for Replication Research, which refer to “scientific consensus” and the involvement of information systems researchers in “the quest for scientific advancement”. This paper suggests that the view that information systems is a science in which general laws can be developed through the application of statistical surveys, laboratory experiments run and expressed as mathematical equations has negatively affected the development of information systems. It is argued that the nature of information systems is such that it cannot be pitched as a science. Following a brief discussion of the motivation and philosophy that might underlie the perception of information systems as a science, an alternative view of information systems is offered as a deep, complex and multi-layered discipline within the humanities. Dance studies is proposed as an appropriate discipline to twin with information systems. The paper ends with a call for the remobilising of information systems, the positioning of information systems as a social humanity.
The file attached to this record is the author's final peer reviewed version
Citation : McBride, N. (2018) Is Information Systems a Science? Communications of the Association of Information Systems, 43
ISSN : 1529-3181
Research Group : Centre for Computing and Social Responsibility
Research Institute : Centre for Computing and Social Responsibility (CCSR)
Peer Reviewed : Yes