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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10791/263

Title: A tale of two identities: Distinguished and Different. An application of Bourdieu's "thinking tools" to making sense of an information technology system implementation.
Authors: van Hilten, Adriana
Supervisor(s): Devine, Kay (Faculty of Business, Athabasca University); Thurlow, Amy (Department of Communication Studies, Mount St. Vincent University)
Examining Committee: Mills, Albert (Sobey School of Business Management, Saint Mary's University); Suddaby, Roy (Peter B. Gustavson School of Business, University of Victoria)
Degree: Doctor of Business Administration (DBA)
Department: Faculty of Business
Keywords: Sensemaking
Critical Sensemaking
Bourdieu
Habitus
Antenarrative
Information Technology Systems Implementation
Issue Date: 8-May-2018
Abstract: This dissertation presents an emic qualitative study of the introduction of a new information system technology tool at a firm in the Canadian financial sector. The goals of the study are two-fold: to demonstrate the efficacy and appropriateness of Bourdieu’s critical social theory as a framework for sensemaking in organizations, as well as to understand how users make sense of a new tool. Users’ accounts of the change to the new tool, with context provided by internal organizational communications and information about the firm available externally, are examined through the analysis of antenarrative. It adds to the body of knowledge through this unique application of Bourdieu’s theory, studying “the making sense of” a systems implementation in a professional firm and supports the body of knowledge referencing the importance of identity, context and plausibility in making sense of change. As well, it provides some insights into the work done by users to maintain, recover, reclaim or re-balance identities under threat. It also adds to the work initiated by Bourdieu in his discussion of ‘split habitus’, by demonstrating the possibility of simultaneously being in multiple (i.e., plural) habitus, and using the logic associated with each to make sense of the experience of using new tools in a work environment. Additionally, the study informs the practice of change associated with systems implementations, giving insight to the importance of “user identity logic(s)”, and paying attention to situations in the design, development and implementation of the system that may be impacting user identity logic.
Graduation Date: Jun-2018
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10791/263
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