Identity crisis has been a longstanding problem for the Information Systems (IS) community. Most previous studies have addressed this problem from the philosophical perspective, but few have tackled it from the social network perspective. In this paper, we report our work on studying the social identity of IS by applying social network analysis on the collaboration (co-authorship) network for ICIS papers over the past 26 years. The social network of IS researchers and the characteristics of the network were identified and discussed. Our results showed that the IS community is well connected and has demonstrated frequent interactions among members. The critical mass of the community, the most productive authors and institutions, was identified. Cross-institutional collaboration patterns were also studied, and some interesting results were revealed. In addition, we studied how the social network has evolved over time. The networks at three different time periods were constructed and compared. We found that the network has evolved healthily over time with the addition of new members and the improved connection among members. Overall, our analyses indicated that the IS community has maintained the social identity well and we expect the trend to keep on in the future.
Xu, Jennifer and Chau, Michael, "The Social Identity of IS: Analyzing the Collaboration Network of the ICIS Conferences (1980-2005)" (2006). ICIS 2006 Proceedings. 39.