How to Use Information Technology for Cooperative Work: Development of Shared Technological Frames

Abstract

Technological frames, participants’ assumptions about information technology (IT), and in particular about the usage of the technology for everyday cooperative work, are a relevant factor for IT related behavior. Incongruent technological frames are associated with problems during the application and use of a new IT in an organization. This paper presents a field study which applies a pre–post-design in a freight forwarding company. During face-to-face discussion the participating employees of the company negotiated agreements regarding the future usage of a new mobile technology system for every day cooperative work between dispatcher agents and truck drivers. To support the development of shared technological frames the moderation technique STWT (socio-technical walkthrough) was applied. The results describe the structural changes in technological frames, and show to what extent these were shared by the participants. Based on the results possibilities to improve support for the development of shared technological frames are discussed.

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Notes

  1. 1.

    The project was funded (grant 01HT0143) in the context of the research program “work in the e-business” of the German government. Web address of project: http://ls10-www.cs.uni-dortmund.de/Archiv/spiw/

  2. 2.

    http://www.imtm-iaw.ruhr-uni-bochum.de/projekte/seeme/index.html

  3. 3.

    In [] notices of the author.

  4. 4.

    The Jaccard measure was used since this is a measure for binary data. To compare with other similarity coefficients for binary data (e.g. phi correlation or kappa of Cohen) the Jaccard measure obtains for two persons, A and B, the following quotient: the numbers of codes 1 (a feature is present in both participants) is divided by the sum of the codes with the meaning “a feature is present in both persons” and “a feature is present only in person A” and “a feture is present only in person B”. The code “0” for both persons, A and B, meaning that “a future is not present”, is not considered for the Jaccard analysis as compared with other similarity coefficients for binary data. Other measures, e.g. phi correlation or kappa, take into account the similarity regarding both codes (0 as absence of a feature and 1 as presence). So, applying phi correlation the knowledge structures of the participants could be very similar, if they contain many “0” together as absence of a proposition. But the similarity regarding the information which two persons do not have in their propositional knowledge net structures is not appropriate to describe their sharing of information.

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Acknowledgements

I would like to thank Thomas Herrmann and Gabriele Kunau for their support of the study presented here. Additionally, I thank the reviewers for their helpful comments regarding earlier versions of this paper.

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Menold, N. How to Use Information Technology for Cooperative Work: Development of Shared Technological Frames. Comput Supported Coop Work 18, 47 (2009). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10606-008-9083-6

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Keywords

  • introduction of new IT
  • technological frames
  • shared agreements
  • moderation
  • visualization
  • socio-technical walkthrough