Sharing Knowledge in a Shared Services Center Context: An Explanatory Case Study of the Dialectics of Formal and Informal Practices

  • Dragos Vieru
  • Pierre-Emmanuel Arduin
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Business Information Processing book series (LNBIP, volume 266)


This study focuses on how knowledge sharing across boundaries of merging entities during an information system (IS) implementation project in a shared services center (SSC) context affects the resulting system functionality. Although the literature stresses the growing adoption of the SSC as an outsourcing model, there is a lack of studies that examine shared services as a dynamic process of knowledge sharing across the organizational boundaries. We draw on a sociomaterial practice perspective and on the theory of workarounds to analyze an IS implementation project in a healthcare organization resulting from a merger of previously independent hospitals. The results suggest that new technology can be enacted in different ways as it links up with practices of different communities of users. We propose a multilevel process model that indicates at the end of the project a resulting mix of formal and informal (workarounds) practices that emerged from a dialectic process of resistance to, and negotiation of, the IS configuration during its implementation.


Shared services center Knowledge sharing Sociomaterial practice Perspective Workarounds Performativity Sociomaterial assemblages 



The authors would like to gratefully acknowledge the FRQSC funding (no. 2015-NP-180713) received for this project.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Distance Learning University of Québec (TÉLUQ)MontréalCanada
  2. 2.Université Paris-Dauphine, DRM UMR CNRS 7088Paris Cedex 16France

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