Challenging the Installed Base: Deploying a Large Scale IS in a Global Organization

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Rolland, Knut H.
article description
Economic theory and business strategists have pointed at the phenomenon of positive externalities and the related enabling and constraining aspects of an installed base. For instance, in the development of a standards strategy for technology products these externalities are of profound importance [11]. Likewise, deployment of large-scale IS creates interdependencies horizontally throughout the organization, and are constrained by a continuously evolving and socio-technical installed base of information, systems, artifacts, practices, and organizational structures. This paper draws from a case study of a global company and illuminates the role of an installed base in relation to the organizing visions in the deployment of a large-scale IS. The case illustrates that deployment of a large-scale IS in a global company is likely to be more similar to the development of infrastructures than traditional IS development and ITstrategy planning.