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Sociomateriality and Information Systems Research: Quantum Radicals and Cartesian Conservatives

Sociomateriality and Information Systems Research: Quantum Radicals and Cartesian Conservatives Sociomateriality and Information Systems Research: Quantum Radicals and Cartesian Conservatives Marko Niemimaa University of Turku Abstract This paper provides an elaboration and comparison of two main streams of `sociomateriality' research within Information Systems (IS) discipline. Through the rapid and controversial emergence of discussions around sociomateriality, IS research has become entangled with the radical ideas derived from quantum mechanics. The philosophical elaboration of the implications of quantum mechanics, as formulated by physicist/philosopher Karen Barad, has provided a source of inspiration and a basis on theorizing for many IS scholars. Agential realism (AR) questions the Cartesian assumption of inherent and fixed demarcation between matter and meaning, and reworks many taken-for-granted assumptions underpinning much of IS research. In contrast, some IS scholars have sought to preserve the more conservative and established assumptions, and (re)turned to critical realism (CR) in order to fit sociomateriality to IS theorizing without radically reworking the Cartesian assumption. Thence, while both make references to `sociomateriality', their conceptions build on largely different foundations, and use very different vocabulary to describe the phenomenon of interest that easily leads to confusion and to philosophically incongruent theorizing. By elaborating and juxtaposing the two perspectives of sociomateriality and related concepts (ontology/epistemology, matter, http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png ACM SIGMIS Database: the DATABASE for Advances in Information Systems Association for Computing Machinery

Sociomateriality and Information Systems Research: Quantum Radicals and Cartesian Conservatives

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Publisher
Association for Computing Machinery
Copyright
Copyright © 2016 by ACM Inc.
ISSN
0095-0033
DOI
10.1145/3025099.3025105
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Sociomateriality and Information Systems Research: Quantum Radicals and Cartesian Conservatives Marko Niemimaa University of Turku Abstract This paper provides an elaboration and comparison of two main streams of `sociomateriality' research within Information Systems (IS) discipline. Through the rapid and controversial emergence of discussions around sociomateriality, IS research has become entangled with the radical ideas derived from quantum mechanics. The philosophical elaboration of the implications of quantum mechanics, as formulated by physicist/philosopher Karen Barad, has provided a source of inspiration and a basis on theorizing for many IS scholars. Agential realism (AR) questions the Cartesian assumption of inherent and fixed demarcation between matter and meaning, and reworks many taken-for-granted assumptions underpinning much of IS research. In contrast, some IS scholars have sought to preserve the more conservative and established assumptions, and (re)turned to critical realism (CR) in order to fit sociomateriality to IS theorizing without radically reworking the Cartesian assumption. Thence, while both make references to `sociomateriality', their conceptions build on largely different foundations, and use very different vocabulary to describe the phenomenon of interest that easily leads to confusion and to philosophically incongruent theorizing. By elaborating and juxtaposing the two perspectives of sociomateriality and related concepts (ontology/epistemology, matter,

Journal

ACM SIGMIS Database: the DATABASE for Advances in Information SystemsAssociation for Computing Machinery

Published: Dec 13, 2016

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