Stewardship Models of it governance: Beyond Agency Theory



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Stewardship Models of IT Governance: Beyond Agency Theory
Refereed research paper submitted to MWDSI, Chicago, April 2007

Information Technology and E-Business Track

Paul S. Licker, Ph. D.

School of Business Administration

Oakland University

Rochester, MI 48309

licker@oakland.edu

248-370-2432


Stewardship Models of IT Governance: Beyond Agency Theory
Abstract
Most approaches to IT governance are grounded in agency theory (Jensen and Meckling, 1976, 1994). Agency theory assumes that the interests of owners and managers are inherently in conflict and that defensive activities are necessary by owners to protect these interests. Stewardship theory (Donaldson and Davis, 1991) points out that these assumptions aren’t always true. A series of theoretical propositions concerning the stewardship model were made by Davis, Schoorman and Donaldson (1997). Their ideas, in conjunction with ideas on best practices in IT governance from Weill and Ross (2004) provide an explanation for variance in the effectiveness of a variety of governance models. Application of the stewardship model results in several novel approaches to IT governance and technology management, especially with regard to post-implementation value delivery.



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