Beliefs about computing: Contrary evidence from a study of mobile computing use among criminal justice personnel

Andrea Tapia, Steve Sawyer

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

In this paper, we explore how technological determinism can act as a belief system. To do so, we draw on a multi-organization field trial of uses of mobile computing by criminal justice personnel. Our findings make clear that mobile computing does not yet meet operational needs. In high contrast, we find that the belief these mobile computing technologies will solve the preponderance of organizational, informational, and communication problems that beset contemporary criminal justice efforts is unchanged by the shortcomings of the current environment. While the devices, applications, and telecommunications network never worked as intended or expected, their introduction was met with acceptance, enthusiasm, and the deterministic belief that they would make work better. We go beyond the common explanation of learning from a field trial and explore the contradictions inherent to the findings through the lens of technological determinism. In doing this, we highlight several implications that deterministic beliefs have regarding organizational value of field trials and research conceptions regarding the introduction of new computing technologies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationDesigning Ubiquitous Information Environments
Subtitle of host publicationSocio-Technical Issues and Challenges - IFIP TC8 WG 8.2 International Working Conference
PublisherSpringer New York LLC
Pages109-122
Number of pages14
ISBN (Print)9780387275604
StatePublished - Jan 1 2005
Externally publishedYes
EventIFIP TC8 WG 8.2 International Working Conference on Designing Ubiquitous Information Environments: Socio-Technical Issues and Challenges - Cleveland, OH, United States
Duration: Aug 1 2005Aug 3 2005

Publication series

NameIFIP Advances in Information and Communication Technology
Volume185
ISSN (Print)1868-4238

Other

OtherIFIP TC8 WG 8.2 International Working Conference on Designing Ubiquitous Information Environments: Socio-Technical Issues and Challenges
CountryUnited States
CityCleveland, OH
Period8/1/058/3/05

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Information Systems
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Information Systems and Management

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