The Interplay Between Evidence and Judgment in the IT Project Prioritization Process

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Abstract

Strategic decisions concerning IT investments are based on a project prioritization process designed to accommodate evidence-based management and rational decision-making. Our empirical study of IT project prioritization in a financial institution shows how managers reach decisions under norms of evidence-based management. We use a rich dataset derived from a longitudinal study. We analyze managers’ decision-making practices and identify four tactics of supplementing, substituting, interpreting, and reframing the available evidence. The choice of tactic depends on how decision makers perceive the available evidence. All tactics involve the use of judgment. We also identify a number of devices employed to enable such judgments. Our study shows that although evidence is not playing its designated role in evidence-based management, it nevertheless plays a central role in the IT prioritization process.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Strategic Information Systems
Volume24
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)171-188
Number of pages18
ISSN0963-8687
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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