The diffusion, design and social shaping of production management information systems in Europe

Jacky Swan (Warwick Business School, University of Warwick, Coventry, UK)
Sue Newell (Nottingham Business School, Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham, UK and)
Maxine Robertson (Coventry Business School, Coventry University, UK)

Information Technology & People

ISSN: 0959-3845

Publication date: 1 March 2000


Information systems for production management tend to be promoted by technology suppliers as standardised solutions which form a singular “best practice”. However, as these technologies are configurational, the notion of best practice is illusory. Data on the diffusion and design of information systems for production management across four European countries indicate distinctive national differences. It is argued that these can best be explained at two levels: first, national differences in the social institutional networks through which information about these systems is diffused socially shapes patterns of adoption and design; second pre‐existing patterns of work design and managerial practices may influence the degree of “fit” between particular design philosophies and prevailing organizational contexts in different countries. Differences in the particular roles of professional association networks and technology suppliers in the diffusion process are explained in terms of different patterns of knowledge sharing across countries.



Swan, J., Newell, S. and Robertson, M. (2000), "The diffusion, design and social shaping of production management information systems in Europe", Information Technology & People, Vol. 13 No. 1, pp. 27-46.




Copyright © 2000, MCB UP Limited

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