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We live in a world of digitized work. Technological advancements in software, hardware, and artificial intelligence have facilitated the infusion of digital technologies into a broad range of work practices. While humans have been using tools to do their tasks since stone age (e.g., using a stone to crack a nut), digital technologies are different.
Digital technologies fundamentally transform how humans get things done. Emerging forms of digital technologies even evolve from being simple tools to autonomous systems that execute organizational work without human intervention at all. For instance, a chatbot becomes the new service representative, an algorithmic trading agent becomes the new fund manager, or a self-driving car becomes the new taxi driver. This transformation has far-reaching consequences for individuals, organizations, and society.
Yet, the existing literature offers surprisingly little insight about the intersection of organizational work and emerging digital technologies. While digital technologies have been acknowledged to enable and constrain human action, not much is known about specific mechanisms that emerging digital technologies exhibit on organizational work.
Within this research, we intend to shed light on these unique dynamics. Therefore, we primarily use the concept of organizational routines to explore how digital technologies affect the evolution thereof. In that regard, we make use of novel approaches, such as computationally intensive data-driven methodologies.
Thesis topics could include, amongst others, reviews or analyses of technology-enabled work practices.

Introductory Reading

  • Glaser, V. L. 2017. “Design Performances: How Organizations Inscribe Artifacts to Change Routines,” Academy of Management Journal (60:6), pp. 2126–2154.
  • Leonardi. 2011. “When Flexible Routines Meet Flexible Technologies: Affordance, Constraint, and the Imbrication of Human and Material Agencies,” MIS Quarterly (35:1), p. 147.
  • Lyytinen, K., Nickerson, J. V., and King, J. L. 2020. “Metahuman Systems = Humans + Machines That Learn,” Journal of Information Technology, pp. 1–19.
  • Pentland, B. T., and Feldman, M. S. 2008. “Designing Routines: On the Folly of Designing Artifacts, While Hoping for Patterns of Action,” Information and Organization (18:4), pp. 235–250.
  • Swanson, E. B. 2019. “Technology as Routine Capability,” MIS Quarterly (43:3), pp. 1007–1024.