Current Research Projects

Organizing Vision Studies
This project seeks to further the understanding of organizing visions for innovating with IT (Swanson and Ramiller, 1997). Individual studies examine the careers of particular visions, some successful, some not, as illustrated in the case of professional services automation (Wang and Swanson (2007). A recent study examined the career of Web 2.0 as reflected in the history of its Wikipedia entry, interpreted as a discourse vehicle (Gorgeon and Swanson, 2008).


• Swanson, E. B., and Ramiller, N. C., "The Organizing Vision in Information Systems Innovation," Organization Science 8 (5), 1997, 458-474.

• Wang, P., and Swanson, E. B., "Launching Professional Service Automation: Institutional Entrepreneurship for Information Technology Innovations," Information and Organization 17, 2007, 59-88.

• Gorgeon, A., and Swanson, E. B., "Web 2.0 According to Wikipedia: Capturing an Organizing Vision," Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology 62 (10), 2011, 1916-1932.

Assimilation Studies
When firms innovate with new IT, they must ultimately assimilate the IT in their work practices, such that they gain new capabilities and value from it. This project seeks to understand the associated organizational learning process (Swanson, 2004). Individual studies examine specific cases, as illustrated in one firm's attempt to assimilate a new customer relationship management (CRM) system among workers across multiple sites (Yamauchi and Swanson, 2010).


• Swanson, E. B., "How is an IT Innovation Assimilated?," in Fitzgerald, B. and Wynn, E. (Eds.), IT Innovation for Adaptability and Competitiveness, Kluwer, 2004, 267-287.

• Yamauchi, Y., and Swanson, E. B., "Local Assimilation of an Enterprise System: Situated Learning by Means of Familiarity Pockets," Information and Organization 20, 2010, 187-206.

Foundations Studies
This project examines the foundations of information systems in theory and practice. A recent study suggests that "interaction" is a central foundational concept for theorizing a firm's need for information systems (Swanson, 2007, 2012).


• Swanson, E. B., "Why do Firms Have Information Systems?," Americas Conference on Information Systems, Keystone, Colorado, August, 2007.

• Swanson, E.B., "Who Learns What from the New Human-Computer Interaction: Toward a New Perspective," Americas Conference on Information Systems, Seattle, August, 2012.