Thursday, January 3, 2013

Decision Support Systems in OSS

Alavi and Joachimsthaler (1992) conducted research from a quantitative view of the empirical decision support system implementation literature to provide guidelines for implementing open source software project management. According to the authors, most theorists who have approached this issue from a cognitive stance agree that users solve problems and make decisions through the processing and utilization of information. Additionally, the authors point out that the decision support systems tend to focus on the analysis/heuristic dimension of research. In their research Alavi and Joachimsthaler (1992) discuss their variables of personality, demographics, and user situations. The authors also sought out articles from many avenues (working papers, dissertations, and conferences) to receive a better view of the research. Thus, their meta-analytic findings provide a more objective assessment of the strength of relationships between variables of interest than could be found by reviewing just journal articles.

Through the meta-analysis methodology, the authors reported their results in three sections: user factors, decision support systems implementation success variables and research methodology characteristics. From their research, they accomplished two specific objectives. First, they showed that user factors do impact decision support systems implementation success. This conclusion illustrates that the user situational variables are more important than individual differences and that manipulating user situational variables can improve the implementation success rate up to 30 percent. Secondly, they estimated the magnitudes of effects that can be expected in research which will serve as benchmarks for future studies.


Alavi, M., & Joachimsthaler, E. A. (1992). Revisiting DSS implementation research: A meta-analysis of the literature and suggestions for researchers. MIS Quarterly, 16(1), 95-117. Retrieved from

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