Value of IS research: Is there a crisis?

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This debate section article examines the notion of value or worth of IS research. It suggests that how others value the product of Information Systems (IS) research may be the underlying problem triggering various forms of anxiety discourses that are frequently recurring. The value of IS research is examined from the perspectives of ends-means, basic and applied research, and the significance of IS problems. The article also proposes ways of maintaining the value of IS research by emphasizing originality, being "active" and not "passive", and making evident what is not. The article argues that the value of IS research is found not in duplicating research already undertaken in management, computer science, psychology, economics or its other reference disciplines, but in asking questions that other disciplines are not asking or in addressing problems that others are incapable of addressing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number41
Pages (from-to)801-816
Number of pages16
JournalCommunications of the Association for Information Systems
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2014


  • Anxiety discourse
  • Disciplinarity
  • IS theory
  • Information systems (IS) research
  • Intellectual ideals


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