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Information systems research: foundations, design and theory
Ali M., Palgrave Macmillan, New York, NY, 2023. 281 pp. Type: Book (3031254694)
Date Reviewed: Jun 24 2024

An exceptional and indispensable resource for anyone conducting research in the field of information systems (IS), this textbook is a must-have. The book adeptly traverses the philosophical underpinnings of modern IS research design, rendering it an indispensable asset for novice and experienced researchers alike.

A notable aspect of the book is its emphasis on the methodological instruments that are crucial for carrying out efficacious research in the multidisciplinary domain of modern IS. This attribute is especially advantageous in a time when information systems are progressively gaining intricacy and integrating themselves into our everyday routines.

Forthrightly, the authors address the current social paradigm shift and global changes, underscoring the criticality of new methodological tools that have fundamentally transformed the way in which we utilize IS to facilitate our daily activities. This viewpoint is not only invigorating but also profoundly pertinent in the swiftly progressing digital environment of the present day.

Furthermore, this textbook’s practicality and ergonomics are enhanced by the incorporation of learning objectives, case studies, assessment questions, and exercises. It provides a structured and unambiguous approach to IS research methodology, an aspect that is frequently difficult for many in this field. An additional noteworthy aspect of this book is its comprehensive examination of the methodological processes utilized in research endeavors examining modern IS domains like information management, digital business, information and communication technology (ICT), and information science. Adopting this all-encompassing methodology guarantees that the reader acquires a comprehensive understanding of the topic at hand.

The author provides evidence that data protection, anonymity, and confidentiality are critical elements in the contemporary era, particularly in light of technological progress and the growing dependence on digital platforms for private, professional, and governmental endeavors. The author effectively emphasizes their significance in a number of crucial aspects:

  • Right to privacy: the author demonstrates that in numerous legal systems, the protection of personal privacy is a fundamental human right. Data protection prevents the misuse of personally identifiable information, thereby safeguarding the dignity and autonomy of individuals. Individuals possess a right to govern the manner in which their personal information is utilized.
  • Confidence in digital systems: for digital systems to operate efficiently and securely, users must have faith that their data is being managed responsibly. This confidence is fostered by data protection and confidentiality, which in turn encourages more organizations and individuals to conduct digital transactions and interactions.
  • Preventing fraud and identity theft: effective data management is exemplified by the prevention of sensitive information from compromising itself, thus mitigating the likelihood of identity theft, financial fraud, and other malevolent undertakings.
  • Observance of the law and prevention of sanctions: the author notes that numerous nations have stringent data protection laws, such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in the European Union(EU). Adherence to these regulations is critical for organizations to prevent significant financial penalties and legal consequences.
  • Reputation and customer relationships: organizations that place a premium on data protection and confidentiality have a greater likelihood of establishing enduring, robust consumer relationships. On the contrary, data breaches have the potential to inflict significant harm upon an organization’s standing and erode consumer confidence.
  • Maintaining anonymity during delicate circumstances: ensuring anonymity is of utmost importance in specific domains, including academic research, medical trials, and feedback surveys, in order to obtain candid and unbiased responses. Furthermore, it safeguards participants against possible consequences that may arise from their participation or responses.
  • Ensuring public safety and national security: safeguarding sensitive data is of utmost importance for national security at the state level. Classified information leaks have the potential to endanger both public safety and national interests.
  • Ethical accountability: preserving the privacy and confidentiality of individuals is an ethical duty. This holds particular significance in industries such as healthcare, where maintaining patient confidentiality is a fundamental tenet.
  • Research integrity and innovation: securing data anonymity and confidentiality is critical in domains such as scientific research, to preserve the integrity of the investigation and safeguard intellectual property.
  • Management of global data: in a world that is becoming more interconnected, data frequently traverses national boundaries. Effective data protection legislation and protocols are critical for the management and preservation of this worldwide exchange of data.

In brief, data protection, anonymity, and confidentiality are fundamental to preserving the integrity, trust, and security of our progressively digital society; they are not merely legal or technical obligations. They ensure the security of both organizations and individuals, thereby creating a favourable setting for the development and advancement of digital technologies.

In essence, the textbook distinguishes itself through its comprehensive and perceptive examination of methodologies employed in IS research. This essential guide is certain to enhance the reader’s comprehension and implementation of research methods within the ever-evolving domain of IS. Required reading for anyone studying IS research for the first time or for researchers seeking to expand their methodological understanding.

Reviewer:  Mihailescu Marius Iulian Review #: CR147782
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