User Participation in Contemporary IS Development: an IS management perspective

Laurie McLeod, Stephen MacDonell, Bill Doolin


User participation in IS development has become an established practice perceived to improve both the development process and its outcomes. Recently, however, Markus and Mao (2004) have highlighted the need to revisit user participation in light of the changing IS development environment. A survey of New Zealand organisations with 200 or more full-time employees was undertaken in order to obtain an updated assessment of the actual practice of user participation in IS development projects. The results suggest that user participation continues to be a dominant aspect of IS development. The paper provides empirical data on the common reasons for having users participate and the form and types of user activities in development. The responding organisations perceived user participation to be beneficial to IS development in their recent IS projects, and many intended continuing or increasing their current levels of user participation in the future.


user participation; IS development; New Zealand

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ISSN: Online: 1326-2238 Hard copy: 1449-8618
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