Jackson, P. (2007), "Information and Communication Technology in Organisations", International Journal of Public Sector Management, Vol. 20 No. 4, pp. 341-341. https://doi.org/10.1108/09513550710750057
Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2007, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
This book sets itself the extremely laudable aim of addressing the question of why the application of information and communication technology (ICT) succeeds or fails when introduced into organisations. As such it explicitly, and very capably, takes a militantly eclectic multidisciplinary approach that crosses a number of boundaries. In particular, it addresses a common set of issues within my own teaching on of information management on an MBA, specifically those that require a knowledge of ICTs and their capabilities, and also of the nature of organisations.
It is something of a truism in the field that most ICT projects fail, not because the technology is faulty, but the implementation is poor. This may manifest itself in the form of poor project management, lack of management and consultant understanding, or, more commonly, just a poor fit between the technology itself and the organisation. As a means of addressing these issues in an accessible and valuable way, this book is a very valuable tool.
It is clearly written and set out, with three main sections. The first looks at definitions of ICTs and organisations, the second concerns itself with more “traditional” information management by addressing issues of implementation, approaches, tasks, procedures and approaches, whilst the third moves on to look at the implications of integrated systems implied by egovernment. Overall, it also manages to avoid inventing yet another new methodology, but also manages to maintain a coherent approach that will be valuable both to undergraduate students on ICT‐related course, but more particularly for students at under or postgraduate level who are studying information management or egovernment as part of a broader degree, like an MBA.
In addition to the core text of the book, the authors also use a series of useful and clear tables and diagrams to illustrate their points very clearly. Some of these would be of obvious value as teaching aids, with this book as a course support. There is also a series of highlighted boxes with illustrative examples that shed more light on the practical application of the theory outlined within the book. I also think that the glossary of terms provided at the end will be invaluable to students coming to this subject for the first time, since it does lend itself to technical jargon that does not reoccur in other subjects.
Overall, I think this is a good quality textbook, that may not be groundbreaking in theoretical terms, but provides a valuable service in spanning boundaries across academic subjects and in providing a rich resource for university teaching that I will be using.