IS researchers utilize a variety of philosophical and cognitive positions to interpret the world and issues in the field of Information Systems. The paper suggests that without mediation, two opposing philosophical perspective positions at a meta level, such as positivism and realism, can result in IS researchers proposing incompatible models of given phenomenon at an applied level. The incompatibility of the models is further manifested when attempts are made to develop complex IS constructs such as the Internet which comprises of both the physical implementation and the contextual space it creates, from competing models instead of starting from an ontological examination. The paper utilizes the explanatory potential of Critical Realism as a philosophical foundation and Actor Network Theory (ANT) as a scaffold, by developing the Internet as a construct utilizing the three domains supported in Critical Realism being the real, actual and empirical, and illustrating how future work can build on such a construct by utilizing ANT
Baloch, Fuad and Cusack, Brian, "Utilizing Philosophical Critical Realism and Actor Network Theory to Develop the Construct Internet" (2011). UK Academy for Information Systems Conference Proceedings 2011. 8.