Paper ID

2280

Paper Type

short

Description

The philosophical perspective of critical realism offers IS researchers the opportunities to theorize the materiality of information systems and to develop in-depth causal explanations for how and why events occur in a sociotechnical phenomenon. Building upon the progressive development of critical realist studies, I identify three issues for improving critical realist case study research. First, although critical realists focus on identifying generative mechanisms, very little research has developed a theory based on the generative mechanisms identified. Second, existing research lacks a consistent view of conceptualizing generative mechanisms. Third, researchers face the challenge of ensuring the rigor of conducting critical realist case studies. To address these issues, I develop a stepwise case study approach for developing critical realist process theory. This approach provides a guideline for researchers to collegially contribute to the development of the critical realist research from both theoretical and methodological perspectives.

COinS
 

Developing Critical Realist Process Theory via Explaining Generative Mechanisms

The philosophical perspective of critical realism offers IS researchers the opportunities to theorize the materiality of information systems and to develop in-depth causal explanations for how and why events occur in a sociotechnical phenomenon. Building upon the progressive development of critical realist studies, I identify three issues for improving critical realist case study research. First, although critical realists focus on identifying generative mechanisms, very little research has developed a theory based on the generative mechanisms identified. Second, existing research lacks a consistent view of conceptualizing generative mechanisms. Third, researchers face the challenge of ensuring the rigor of conducting critical realist case studies. To address these issues, I develop a stepwise case study approach for developing critical realist process theory. This approach provides a guideline for researchers to collegially contribute to the development of the critical realist research from both theoretical and methodological perspectives.