Control, trust, power, and the dynamics of information system outsourcing relationships: A process study of contractual software development: A process study of contractual software development

Ari Heiskanen, Mike Newman, Merja Birgitta Eklin

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


    This paper provides a longitudinal description and analysis of the evolving relationships
    between a university and vendors contracted to develop software systems. A contextualised
    social process model is developed and employed using data gathered over the decade-
    long process, focussing on the early years. The right levels of control and trust are
    conceptualised to lead to confidence that the development process is set on the right
    course. The study gives unique insights into the contractual software development process
    from a client’s perspective together with pointers for more general applications of the findings
    related to control, trust, and bargaining power in customised information system
    development. The analysis of the data reveals how the client’s actions oscillated between
    trust and control in three areas: performance, price level, and observed behaviour.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalJournal of Strategic Information Systems
    Issue number4
    Pages (from-to)268-286
    Number of pages19
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 2008
    MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

    Fields of Science

    • 113 Computer and information sciences

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