Publication Details

Clarke, R. J. (2005). Systems resemblance and workpractice evolution: implications for work activity (re)design. In G. Goldkuhl, R. J. Clarke & K. Axelsson (Eds.), Proceedings of Communication and Coordination in Business Processes: The International Workshop on Communication and Coordination in Business Processes, in Kiruna, Sweden (pp. 45-61). Linkoping University, Sweden: UniTryck, Sweden.


This paper is concerned with addressing the question of how apparently disparate and unconnected systems can resemble each other. The question of what counts as a systems resemblance necessitates developing contextual workpractice descriptions associated with the systems features and ultimately entire systems. Using systemic semiotics an apparent ontogenetic convergence between entirely different systems is used to show that systems resemblance can be inferred when the constituent workpractices of information systems consist of comparable register features and especially if they exhibit comparable generic features. The implications of these findings for a new class of work activity (re)design practices are considered.