Global, International and Cultural Issues in IS


In this article, we report on an investigation that integrated the results from twenty meta-studies on research methods asidentified by a thorough literature review. By conducting this investigation, we seek to reconstruct the historical developmentof research methods in the Information Systems (IS) discipline. Major results of the investigation are: Only the classicalempirical methods (survey, case study, laboratory experiment, and field experiment) have been the subject of intensivediscussion. Survey, case study, and laboratory experiment demonstrate an upward tendency in their historical developmentduring the past forty years (1968-2006), whereas the field experiment does not. The investigation reveals an average adoptionrate of 24 percent for the survey, 13 percent for the case study, 10 percent for the laboratory experiment, and 3 percent for thefield experiment. Finally, we have not observed radical methodological changes in the IS discipline. Key findings and theirimplications for the future development of the IS discipline are discussed.