Cultural richness versus cultural large scale insights: Culture, globalization, and IT workers

Michelle L. Kaarst-Brown, Indira R. Guzman

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

Abstract

The increasing globalization of business and of the Information Technology (IT) workforce has increased interest in cross-cultural issues associated with distributed software development, virtual teams, and cultural conflict or collaboration using information and communication technologies (ICT's) [6]. We continue to see a reliance on studies using quantitative methods that compare a limited number of cultural variables (such as Hofstede's 1984), often because of the challenges associated with richer interpretive or ethnographic studies. Ethnography is a traditional design approach when studying rich cultural issues, deeply rooted in anthropology and goals of rich, emic description, and understanding [1]. Unfortunately, in information systems (IS) research, there is a predominant emphasis on quantitative survey designs, sacrificing cultural richness for broader sampling of more limited variables. Our extended abstract proposes mixed method designs that incorporate both quantitative and qualitative methods as a viable, richer alternative to survey research of cultural studies. For purposes of our presentation at ACM SIGMIS-CPR, we are providing some preliminary arguments from our larger study where additional research is analyzed and compared. To illustrate our points, however, we briefly compare two IS cultural studies, one using comparative ethnography and one using a sequential, phased mixed method design. Our goal is not to discourage rich cultural ethnographies, but to provide a viable alternative approach that may enable more culture research in IS.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationSIGMIS-CPR 2014 - Proceedings of the 2014 Conference on Computers and People Research
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery
Pages55-58
Number of pages4
ISBN (Print)9781450326254
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014
Event52nd Association of Computing Machinery (ACM) Annual Computers and People Research Conference, SIGMIS-CPR 2014 - Singapore, Singapore
Duration: May 29 2014May 31 2014

Publication series

NameSIGMIS-CPR 2014 - Proceedings of the 2014 Conference on Computers and People Research

Other

Other52nd Association of Computing Machinery (ACM) Annual Computers and People Research Conference, SIGMIS-CPR 2014
CountrySingapore
CitySingapore
Period5/29/145/31/14

Keywords

  • culture
  • ethnography
  • mixed method
  • research design choices

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science (miscellaneous)

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