Information systems development methodologies: a broader perspective

  • D. E. Avison
Part of the IFIP — The International Federation for Information Processing book series (IFIPAICT)


This paper first provides a historical perspective on approaches to developing information systems and argues that there are major weaknesses associated with the conventional waterfall model and the methodologies which followed. The paper suggests that a contingency approach to information systems development has much to offer and looks at Multiview, which is described as an exploration in information systems development. Some strengths and weaknesses of this contingency approach are highlighted and a new version of Multiview offered. This description enables a further discussion of information systems development and suggests that human and organisational aspect are at least as important as the technical ones which tend to be emphasised. Information systems development is seen as first a social process, though it will contain technical aspects. This social process is examined in more detail illustrating the arguments, for example, with different views of the systems analyst and the problem situation in this process. Such a broad approach also suggests that the area of which information systems development is a part, is multi-disciplinary where technology and computing are by no means dominant.


Action research contingency Multiview social process soft systems information systems development 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • D. E. Avison
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of ManagementUniversity of SouthamptonSouthamptonUK

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