Technologist engagement with risk management practices during systems development? Approaches, effectiveness and challenges

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11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The inability to engage with systems risk during the development of integrated socio-technical systems presents a real threat to global and local socio-economic stability. Current theories on system risk engagement are driven by a functionalist orthodoxy. Accordingly, risk management is either non-existent, done in parallel to other development activity, or used by organisations as an instrument of control. Systems risk management needs to be addressed at the source of the problem: the systems engineering process. This paper addresses the predominant failure to appropriately engage with systems risk during development. It provides, with respect to the theoretical dimensions, a diversity of risk perspectives, complexity and socio-technical systems theory. A broad literature review on different risk concepts, risk management perspectives and organisational paradigms (functionalist, interpretive, radical humanist and radical structuralist) is also presented. In order to overcome a lack of a holistic and reflective risk management approach to systems development, this paper sketches an integrated soft systems methodology approach which can be used for engaging with systems risk during systems development.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)347-359
Number of pages13
JournalAI and Society
Volume31
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 01 Aug 2016

Keywords

  • Information systems paradigms
  • Systems development
  • Systems risk

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