The politics of simulation: actors' information system use

Emberson, Caroline and Storey, John (2008). The politics of simulation: actors' information system use. In: 3rd International Organisational Learning, Knowledge and Capabilities Conference, 28-30 Apr 2008, University of Aarhus Copenhagen.



The dynamic, social and political nature of actors' information system use has been under explored and under appreciated within studies of organisational learning. In this paper we use ideographic case study data of collaborative merchandising practices in the UK clothing retail industry to explore how actors learned to use ICT-based data representations to their advantage. Our findings cast doubt on any straightforward connection between the data generated by these systems and the physical realities they purport to represent. In this paper, we make diagnostic use of the concepts of 'practical meaning' and 'simulacra' to explore this phenomenon. The implications of these findings for future research are discussed.

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