The structuring of the Danish IT field since its emergence in the fifties is analysed. The analysis deals with both the Danish IT people and IT organisations (suppliers as well as intermediaries and users).

Seven IT communities representing different configurations of tasks, actors, and value systems are identified as the main constituents of the Danish IT field.

The emergence of these institutions is explained as a consequence of processes of institutionalisation, comprising:

• interaction between a community and its environment,

• IT field interaction,

• societal influences.

These processes create tendencies towards both divergence and convergence between the IT communities.

By engaging in this type of field level analysis we are better able to explain the variations identified at the community and organisational level.

The analysis and recent observations make it debatable whether the identified business system should to be regarded as a stable 'business recipe', or as a business system in transition.