Groupthink Decision Making Deficiency in the Requirements Engineering Process: Towards a Crowdsourcing Model
21 Pages Posted: 19 Aug 2012
Date Written: August 19, 2012
We make an argument that requirements engineering, as a primer to information technology deployment in organizations, is largely failing because decision making in the requirements engineering (RE) process empathizes with the ethos of 'group think' which 'fuels' inefficient 'control indeterminacy.' We make this argument from the premise that technological artifacts that get inscribed within organizational culture and design do so through an initial process that involves prioritization, which in itself is theorized as an outcome of organizational discourse. We draw on critical realism's retroductive approach and the practice of 'group think' for grounding crowdsourcing in IT project prioritization. Our choice of crowdsourcing as a remedy for inefficiencies in IT Project prioritization is deliberate: it elevates the notion of group think as a theoretical lens; and is in line with the positioning of organizational decision making as deliberately constitutive and representative of stakeholder interests. However, we remain attentive guard against utopianism, but still make the claim that crowdsourcing provides us with some traction for seeking alternatives that can lead to a re-invigoration in RE research for effective practices in IT projects. The analyses links RE decision making deficiency to the prevalence of Organizational Resistance, Technical Incompetence, Lack of a Moral and Ethical Code and Inappropriate Leadership for Creativity.
Keywords: Crowd Sourcing, Requirements Engineering, Decision Making, Group Think, IT Project Management
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