Systèmes d'Information et Management


This paper aims at studying how actors, belonging to heterogeneous social worlds, can manage to coordinate themselves and to share knowledge. The paper mobilizes an original concept, still little used in management science, namely the concept of boundary objects (BO) as a lens for exploring coordination, dependencies and knowledge management (KM) across boundaries. The methodology is based on a case study, which presents the im- plementation of a new Information System (IS) related to the evolution of an operating room process planning in a French public hospital. The qualitative study is based on the practice-based theory, in order to analyse deeply how actors use BO in a specific context. In a theoretical perspective, this paper shows that BO help actors to coordinate and to de- velop their knowledge, even to create new knowledge to improve their professional prac- tices. Furthermore, the research highlights the dynamics and the life cycle of BO. This re- sult insists on an important field in Information System research: the social interaction and the difficulties of Information Technology appropriation by the users, but also on the role that boundary-spanners can play. These contributions and perspectives are under- lined and discussed, as important parts to be integrated in the implementation and the use of IS.