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Information Resources Management Association
Advancing the Concepts & Practices of Information Resources Management in Modern Organizations

Evaluating Evolutionary Information Systems

Evaluating Evolutionary Information Systems
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Author(s): Nandish V. Patel (Brunel University, UK)
Copyright: 2000
Pages: 5
Source title: Challenges of Information Technology Management in the 21st Century
Source Editor(s): Mehdi Khosrow-Pour (Information Resources Management Association, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-878289-84-1.ch038


Most information technology evaluation research and practice is either done before the decision to invest or after it. This type of evaluation is suitable for methodological information system development, where a system is developed using business projects and methods with set budgets and time scales, and where the system is regarded as completed. However, it is now recognised that systems development is evolutionary, leading to information systems that are classified as evolutionary systems. Examples of such systems are the World Wide Web, Internet, and Extranets, as well as other software systems that are designed to evolve. We are aware of no current research into evaluating such evolutionary information systems. Current research and practice in information system evaluation is not suitable for information systems that are classified as evolutionary. Thus there is a gap in current research in evaluation of evolutionary information systems that this paper addresses. We do this by proposing a post-modernist framework for exploring the issue of assessing the benefits of such evolutionary information systems, and argue that such evaluation is necessary but could perhaps develop into a new research area within IS evaluation. We conclude that evaluation is necessary throughout the life of evolutionary systems, and that the management of benefits, risks and costs is an important aspect of IS evaluation.

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