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  • 1.
    Eriksson, Owen
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Computer and Systems Sciences. Uppsala University, Sweden.
    Johannesson, Paul
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Computer and Systems Sciences.
    Bergholtz, Maria
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Computer and Systems Sciences.
    The case for classes and instances - a response to representing instances: the case for reengineering conceptual modelling grammars2019In: European Journal of Information Systems, ISSN 0960-085X, E-ISSN 1476-9344, Vol. 28, no 6, p. 681-693Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In “Representing instances: The case for reengineering conceptual modelling grammars”, Lukyanenko et al. (2019) argue that conceptual modelling has been biased towards a focus on knowledge about general phenomena (classes) rather than about specific instances. While we agree that more attention needs to be paid to instances, we critically reflect on their underlying assumptions about instances and classes. Lukyanenko et al. (2019) assume that instances are mainly material things, and also assume that class-based modelling typically requires that class definitions include comprehensive attribute structures that are expected to be stable over time. Based on these assumptions, they conclude that classes are not needed for modelling instances. As an alternative to these assumptions, we suggest that instances can be viewed as language constructs, i.e., as objects that may be anything that is uniquely referred to and identified in human communication. Based on this assumption, we introduce an identity-oriented view of classes, implying that classes are required for modelling objects (instances). We agree with Lukyanenko et al. (2019) that a reengineering of conceptual modelling grammars is required. This reengineering would benefit from approaches such as an identity-oriented view of classes and a class-instance modelling grammar.

  • 2.
    Goldkuhl, Göran
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Computer and Systems Sciences.
    Pragmatism vs interpretivism in qualitative information systems research2012In: European Journal of Information Systems, ISSN 0960-085X, E-ISSN 1476-9344, Vol. 21, no 2, p. 135-146Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Qualitative research is often associated with interpretivism, but alternatives do exist. Besides critical research and sometimes positivism, qualitative research in information systems can be performed following a paradigm of pragmatism. This paradigm is associated with action, intervention and constructive knowledge. This paper has picked out interpretivism and pragmatism as two possible and important research paradigms for qualitative research in information systems. It clarifies each paradigm in an ideal-typical fashion and then conducts a comparison revealing commonalities and differences. It is stated that a qualitative researcher must either adopt an interpretive stance aiming towards an understanding that is appreciated for being interesting; or a pragmatist stance aiming for constructive knowledge that is appreciated for being useful in action. The possibilities of combining pragmatism and interpretivism in qualitative research in information systems are analysed. A research case (conducted through action research (AR) and design research (DR)) that combines interpretivism and pragmatism is used as an illustration. It is stated in the paper that pragmatism has influenced IS research to a fairly large extent, albeit in a rather implicit way. The paradigmatic foundations are seldom known and explicated. This paper contributes to a further clarification of pragmatism as an explicit research paradigm for qualitative research in information systems. Pragmatism is considered an appropriate paradigm for AR and DR.

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