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What does MIS survey research reveal about diversity and representativeness in the MIS field? A content analysis approach

Erastus Karanja (), Aditya Sharma () and Ibrahim Salama ()
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Erastus Karanja: North Carolina Central University
Aditya Sharma: North Carolina Central University
Ibrahim Salama: North Carolina Central University

Scientometrics, 2020, vol. 122, issue 3, No 14, 1583-1628

Abstract: Abstract Diversity and representativeness are two enriching components of an academic field and for quite some time, Management Information Systems (MIS) researchers have been advocating for more studies on them. The objective of this study is to investigate the extent to which survey-based research articles reflect diversity in MIS research and to evaluate representativeness in journals in the MIS field. Diversity is a multifaceted concept that can be delineated along several constructs such as diversity in research approach, diversity in theories, and diversity in research methods. Survey research is the dominant research method in the MIS field accounting for 32–41% of published empirical research studies. In this study, diversity is conceptualized and explored through six factors that are easily identifiable in a survey-based research article namely the unit of analysis, research topics, type of respondents, number of authors, number of schools of authors, and number of country of authors. The study makes use of a set of 1466 survey-based research articles published over 21 years in 15 mainstream MIS journals in Europe and the USA to study diversity and representativeness using Tsallis entropy and Chi-Square statistics. The results present an overview of the state of the MIS survey-based research in Europe and the USA while also revealing that MIS researchers are predominantly gathering survey data from business executives at the firm and individual units of analysis in both regions. Overall, we find dominant categories (top 2) emerge for each factor as they relate to diversity both in Europe and the USA with three factors having the same dominant categories indicating that diversity continues to elude the MIS research field. The results have implications for both research and practice in the MIS field.

Keywords: Diversity; Representativeness; Tsallis entropy; Content analysis; Survey research; Unit of analysis; MIS (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1007/s11192-019-03331-5

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