Traverdi et al. (2011) present a paper that critiques the dominant research questions in Information Systems (IS) strategy research and proposes a new research agenda for complex adaptive business systems. The authors argue that the current research agenda is limited and lacks relevance for the changing business environment.
The paper begins by reviewing the dominant research themes in IS strategy research, including strategic alignment, competitive advantage, and IT governance. The authors argue that these themes are based on a static view of organizations and do not adequately capture the complexity and dynamism of today’s business systems.
To address this limitation, the authors propose a new research agenda based on the concepts of complex adaptive systems (CAS). CAS theory emphasizes the importance of understanding the emergent properties of complex systems and the interactions between components, rather than focusing on individual components in isolation.
The authors apply this CAS perspective to the three dominant research themes, reframing them as follows: strategic alignment as “dynamic alignment,” competitive advantage as “competitive adaptation,” and IT governance as “governance for emergence.”
The paper concludes by presenting several research questions that can guide future research in these areas. These include questions related to the dynamics of alignment, the role of IT in enabling competitive adaptation, and the emergence of governance structures in complex systems.
Overall, Traverdi et al.’s paper offers a new perspective on IS strategy research, emphasizing the importance of understanding the emergent properties of complex systems and the interactions between components. The authors propose a new research agenda that can guide future research in this area, offering practical insights for researchers and practitioners alike.