Structuration Theory

Matthew Jones

in The Oxford Handbook of Management Information Systems

Published in print July 2011 | ISBN: 9780199580583
Published online September 2011 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Business and Management

Structuration Theory

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  • Business and Management
  • Organizational Theory and Behaviour
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Structuration is a general theory of social organization, and not one specific to information system (IS), which has led to many studies in IS pursuing ideas. The purpose of this article is to present a summary of key features of structuration theory and some criticisms that have been made of these and to discuss its use in the IS field in the light of these features. The theory potentially offers useful insights for the IS field, as information systems are seen as social systems, which exist in social and organizational contexts that influence their development and use, and are also implicated in sustaining and changing these contexts. The final aspect of structuration to be considered will be its relevance to empirical research, where some critics, have suggested that it operates at too high a level of generality to provide guidance in specific empirical settings.

Keywords: structuration theory; social organization; information system; empirical research; generality

Article.  10363 words. 

Subjects: Business and Management ; Organizational Theory and Behaviour ; Knowledge Management

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