This document reinterprets C. P. Snow’s famous “Two Cultures” (the so-called “literary elite” and
scientists) lecture of 1959, in light of advances in information systems in the past fifty years. While Snow
referred to specific groups, his analysis is generalizable: cultural groups differentiate through lack of
communication. Here Snow’s analysis and advice are applied to a different pair of “cultures”(IT purveyors
and IT users) as an example of his general principles. At a time of great unease about terrorism in the face
of apparently relentless technological advance – analogous to Snow’s speech at the height of the Cold
War—and also during a time of (then) apparently dramatic technological advance, the lessons Snow
derived can now apply usefully to today’s specific “two cultures” case.
Licker, Paul and Circhton, S Cameron, "Information infrastructure governance and windows of opportunity" (2009). ECIS 2009 Proceedings. 113.