Autoethnography: Proposing a New Research Method for Information Systems Research

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Title: Autoethnography: Proposing a New Research Method for Information Systems Research
Authors: O Riordan, Niamh
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Date: 13-Jun-2014
Online since: 2016-02-08T15:30:01Z
Abstract: Emerging technologies are facilitating the production of revised and novel forms of 'digital being' - combined frames of meaning, experience, and desired notions of performativity that change what and who we are. A number of theoretical perspectives (e.g. Agential Realism and Sociomateriality) have emerged that seek to address this new reality but have struggled to grapple with the relationship between technology and the things that constitute a human in a psychological sense. In this paper, we argue that IS researchers have been hampered by the paucity of established research methods that are suited for the investigation of emerging digital systems and new forms of digital being. We believe that the IS community has made a serious error by ignoring repeated calls for the use of ethnographic methods in the field. We also feel that autoethnographic methods are highly suited to the task of conducting research on the digitally mediated experiences in everyday activities and in facilitating the development of new theories of digital being. The purpose of this paper is to provide a practical introduction to autoethnography and to explain how IS researchers might do and write autoethnography. The paper focuses on the challenges associated with using an autoethnographic approach in digitally mediated research settings. The paper also focuses on how IS researchers should evaluate autoethnographic research because the main challenge for ethnographic IS research has always been the evaluation of it.
Type of material: Conference Publication
Keywords: AutoethnographyEthnographyInformation systemsDigital lifeEvaluation
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Language: en
Status of Item: Peer reviewed
Conference Details: ECIS 2014 22nd European Conference on Information Systems, Tel Aviv, Israel, 9 - 11 June 2014
Appears in Collections:Business Research Collection

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