The importance of user participation in information systems (IS) development has received a lot of attention from researchers. While prior research efforts have clarified many issues related to user participation, the reasons behind user’s participation in IS projects are still unexplored. The study raises the question of what are the various motives for user participation in IS project? We propose a sequential exploratory strategy consisting of content analysis of focus group interviews in the first phase to be followed up by multivariate data analysis of survey data in the second phase in order to arrive at a dimensional representation of user participation motives. In this research-in-progress paper, we describe and report on the ongoing first phase. The preliminary results demonstrate the initial characterization of user participation motives to be consolidated and used subsequently for development of survey instruments for subsequent validation. The final results offer possibilities of both theoretical and practical contributions which are also delineated.