Communications of the Association for Information Systems


The discussion of whether research is relevant should include attention to a frame of reference for the meaning of relevance. This paper argues that three elements belong in such a frame. One is a clear identification of what interests or stakes are involved in the research, and whose interests are served. Another element is whether the research is intended to produce knowledge for its own sake or is intended to solve a particular practical problem. Lastly, different time frames can lead to completely different judgements about relevance and value. This complexity suggests considerable caution should apply to evaluating the relevance of IS or any other body of research.