Axelsson, K. (1995). Centralized or Decentralized Responsibility for Information Systems? Consequences of two Different Strategies. Technical Report LiTH-IDA-R-95-29, Department of Computer and Information Science, Linköping University, Sweden. (bibtex),
Abstract: When structuring their information systems, some organizations choose to follow an explicit information systems strategy. An important question during the strategy realization is how the responsibility for the systems should be distributed within the organization. Two strategies, with different approaches to this issue, have been examined in six case studies. One of the strategies suggests that the information system responsibility should be held by a central data function separated from the business functions, while the other strategy proposes that each business function should be responsible for its own information systems. The result shows that both strategies have problems when it comes to distribution of responsibility, according to the theoretical description of each strategy. In reality, the responsibility often ends up at the data function or in a similar department, regardless of what the intentions were. One reason is that both users and managers are playing very passive parts in the realization of the strategy. In the conclusions of the paper factors are presented that constrain as well as enable the distribution of responsibility within organizations.
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