The Informing Sciences at a Crossroads: The Role of the Client
InSITE 2007 • Volume 7 • 2007
The essential elements of an informing system are a sender, a communications pathway, and a client. Academic informing systems, however, are best viewed as two interacting informing systems, one that informs clients of a discipline, one that informs clients of the institution. The paper proposes that the greater the degree of overlap between the clients of these two systems, the stronger the position of an individual discipline is likely to be. MIS is presented as an example of a disciplinary informing system that has ceased to inform external clients. This situation, it is argued, is likely to result in the discipline's downfall. The informing sciences transdiscipline itself is then examined using the same lens. While much younger than MIS, the paper argues that informing sciences needs to begin its search for clients in earnest. Building upon lessons learned from another transdiscipline, complex systems, a series of concrete recommendations are presented.
informing sciences, informing systems, client, sender, MIS, institutional priorities, transdiscipline.
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