This paper addresses Information Systems (IS) standards from a managerial perspective. Standards
can be seen as behavior regulations where there is a lack of hierarchical and market steering
mechanisms. The use of government standards to harmonize IS is complicated, since in comparison to
hardware and software products, IS are specific to the context in which they are implemented. Only
hardware and software can be pre-fabricated. Based on a comparative case study of implementations
of regulation from the European Commission seeking to harmonize European e-Customs, this paper
develops a taxonomy of deviation sources for IS standards implementation divergence – reasons why
implementations of IS standards differ. In addition to the previously known deviation sources: a) work
process, b) data meaning, and c) data model, we found two new potential deviation sources in mode of
transfer, and timing of implementation. Furthermore, all these sources seems to be of the nature that
even the slightest deviation in any of the areas leads to the standard failing to meet its objective of
increased efficiency with detrimental effects to the competitiveness of European exporters.
Henningsson, Stefan and Bjorn-Andersen, Niels, "In-house development as an alternative for ERP adoption by SMEs: A critical case study" (2009). ECIS 2009 Proceedings. 84.