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date: 11 November 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This article aims to address an omission in information system research concerning the debate in social science on postmodernism and post-structuralism. It outlines the fundamental arguments of this debate and draw attention to the relevant discussions and disputes. This provides a clear understanding of actor network theory (ANT) as it originates from post-structuralist debates in the field of science and technology studies (STS). It begins by summarizing some of the key debates that are of relevance within poststructuralism and constructivism. The difficulties in using ANT are mentioned and these are due to a lack of exposure to poststructuralism in IS research, as compared with other related disciplines. It draws out a relationship between social shaping of technology, social construction of technology, and ANT. This article further suggests that consideration of efforts in related fields to combine ANT with critical social analysis may be a worthwhile pursuit.

Keywords: information system research, post-structuralism, actor network theory, postmodernism, social construction of technology

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