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2019/2020  KAN-CINTO1013U  Technology and Organization in a Digital World

English Title
Technology and Organization in a Digital World

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Mandatory offered as elective
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Semester
Start time of the course Spring
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Study board
Study Board for BSc/MSc in Business Administration and Information Systems, MSc
Course coordinator
  • Mari-Klara Stein - Department of Digitalisation
Main academic disciplines
  • Information technology
  • Organisation
Teaching methods
  • Face-to-face teaching
Last updated on 04-06-2019

Relevant links

Learning objectives
  • Identify and explain the perspectives on technology and organization presented in the course, including their underlying assumptions and approaches
  • Compare and contrast the perspectives with respect to the analysis of technology and organization in a digital world.
  • Apply the perspectives on real cases to analyze technologies in their social and organizational context.
  • Evaluate practical implications resulting from the interplay between technology and organization and propose improvements at an independent and reflected academic level
Technology and Organization in a Digital World:
Exam ECTS 7,5
Examination form Home assignment - written product
Individual or group exam Individual exam
Size of written product Max. 15 pages
Assignment type Written assignment
Duration 72 hours to prepare
Grading scale 7-point grading scale
Examiner(s) One internal examiner
Exam period Summer
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
Description of the exam procedure

The final examination and assessment are based on an individual written report (15 pages). The topic of the final examination is a case study that is to be critically analyzed using the perspectives discussed in the class. The instructors will provide the case study material to the students after the final lecture. The case study may also be supplemented with additional material provided to the students in class. The re-take exam takes place in August. The re-take exam is the same examination form as the regular exam.

Course content, structure and pedagogical approach

Developing and implementing information systems (IS) in and across organizational contexts is a rather multifaceted challenge that does not only involve their design, but also the development of supportive social frameworks, institutional structures as well as normative conventions that complement and reinforce their adoption and diffusion at large. Therefore, investigating the technological nature of IS without examining their prevalent social aspects yields an incomplete and somewhat shortsighted understanding of the underlying issues at stake.
Thus far, the prevailing discourse in IS has had a techno-centric orientation in spite of the far-reaching social ramifications of these systems. The aim of this course is to move beyond this focus and to include additional ways of describing and analyzing the interrelationship between technology and people in organizations. The course will enable the students to unfold how organizational life is constructed and managed by technology and how social relations influence the technology's ability to contribute to a company's success. We do so by exploring social, organizational, and technological aspects of information systems by building on various perspectives, such as technological determinism, actor-networks, social construction of technology, institutional structures, sensemaking processes, and other approaches used in organization studies. In particular, the course builds on perspectives that explain, apply, build on, and/or compare social aspects of information systems.
The unifying themes that we wish to discuss in the course are: what assumptions about the design, implementation, and use of information systems are embedded in the perspectives? What are the strengths and weaknesses of these perspectives in terms of understanding the interplay between technology and organization, including individual and collective practices with respect to the design and use of technology? How can the different perspectives be applied to real cases of technology use in organizations and what are the practical implications? How do social relations influence the technology's ability to contribute to a company's success?

The course's development of personal competences:
This course will develop the students' skills in analyzing how information systems impact social relations and organizational structures in organizations, and how social relations influence the design, implementation and adoption of IS. In this respect, the course will enhance the students' understanding of the complexity of information systems.

Description of the teaching methods
The main teaching methods will be lectures and case discussions in class.
Feedback during the teaching period
Feedback to students is designed into the course through case discussions every second week. Students will work on case analyses in groups, allowing for peer feedback. Students present their case analyses results and also receive teacher feedback.
The course also includes guest presentations by industry executives, providing feedback and reflection opportunities on how the perspectives covered during the course inform practice.
Student workload
Lectures 30 hours
Preparation for lectures 80 hours
Preparation for case discussions 12 hours
Exam 72 hours
Preparation for exam 12 hours
Total 206 hours
Expected literature

The literature can be changed before the semester starts. Students are advised to find the final literature on Canvas before they buy the books.


The course readings include academic peer-reviewed articles on the perspectives covered during the course (such as technological determinism, social construction of technology, etc.). 


For example:

  • Orlikowski W. and Iacono S. 2001. Desperately Seeking the IT in IT Research: a Call to Theorizing the IT Artefact. Information Systems Research, 12(2), pp. 121-134 
  • Winner L., 1980. Do Artifacts Have Politics? Daedalus, 109(1), pp. 121-136 
  • Bijker W. 1995. King of the Road: The Social Construction of the Safety Bicycle. In “Of Bicycles, Bakelite and Bulbs: Toward a Theory of Sociotechnical Change”, Bijker W., MIT Press, pp.19-100 
  • Weick, K. E., K. M. Sutcliffe, et al. 2005. Organizing and the Process of Sensemaking. Organization Science, 16(4), pp. 409-421 


Last updated on 04-06-2019