About our research
Our research embraces both traditional areas of e-services and new phenomena related to information system research, including strategies and business processes at the organizational level and individual-level usability and privacy.
Much of our research revolves around various aspects of e-services. E-services have the ability to increase organizational efficiency, reduce costs, attract new customers and improve customer service in both private and public organizations. However, there are numerous challenges to tackle both in practice and in research. We work closely with business and public administration to develop usable solutions to practical problems.
In the list below, you will find that our research spans both traditional e-service areas and novel information systems phenomena, covering organisational strategies, business processes, process automation and machine learning, and information systems development, as well as the interplay between these areas. Our research is multidisciplinary; for example, at Karlstad University we work intensively together with Computer Science, CTF - The Service Research Centre, and CSR - The Centre for Societal Risk Research.
Researchers at Information Systems, Karlstad University
Ala Sarah Alaqra
PhD, Senior lecturer
Phone: +46-54-700 11 32
Usable Privacy and Human-Computer Interaction
Ala defended a dissertation in Computer Science on human factors within privacy-enhancing technologies at the end of January 2020, and a few days later Ala began a new employment in Information Systems at Karlstad Business School. Here Ala researches and teaches in human-computer interaction and scientific methodology, including questions on how web-based videoconfsystems can be utlilised in focus group research and collaborative learning.
A specific interest is motivational factors, especially in relation to HCI and digital privacy. Ala has for many years collaborated with researchers from a range of academic fields and organisations. Several of her studies have concerned aspects of eHealth.
MSc, Lecturer and research student
Phone: +46-54-700 28 05
Participatory design och crisis management training
Since end of 2021 research student within the national research school Management and IT, MIT. My PhD project deals with crisis management groups' ability to exercise continouosly. Digital exercising and the asynchronous question is central.
Have been the manager of the Usability Laboratory. The lab is equipped with hardware and software to enable the implementation of Wizard of Oz experiments and other user centered studies and evaluations. Learn more about the lab here.
Previous engagement: The Cloud Accountability Project (or A4Cloud for short) focused on the Accountability For Cloud and Other Future Internet Services as the most critical prerequisite for effective governance and control of corporate and private data processed by cloud-based IT services. My role in this project was to assist in the execution of usability tests by the tools that is produced within this project.
PhD, Associate Professor
Phone: +46-54-700 16 92
Crises management support and also municipalities use of social media
Since 2016 I have been mainly involved in research on IT support for crisis management training. Within the Interreg projects Preparing for Future Crisis Management (2016-2018) and Implementing Future Crisis Management Training (2019-2021) I have been developing and testing digital tools and exercises with 2 to 20 participants.
Another area of interest is issues about the type of communication that takes place between the municipality and local residents through Facebook. Presently we are exploring the possibilities to employ machine learning as support for qualitative analysis.
When a new information system to be developed, it is important that the data to be stored and how it is processed first, both are described textually and graphically illustrated. Often this results in several illustrations with textual descriptions that eventually need to be joined to a description and an illustration of the future information system. In order to do this comprehensible several challenges and problems taken into consideration in this joining is needed. The focus of my research is to develop a semi-automated method for how the uniting should proceed, both in terms of data and how the data is processed. I have also done research in learning programming.
PhD, Senior lecturer
Phone: +46-54-700 17 79
Organizational and human aspects of digitalisation
Linda Bergkvist is assistant professor in information systems at Karlstad Business School, Karlstad University and researcher at CTF – Service Research Center – in Karlstad, Sweden. Linda earned her Ph.D. from Karlstad University in 2014 with her dissertation Towards a Framework for Relational-Oriented Management of Information Systems Outsourcing: Key Conditions Connected to Actors, Relationships and Process. The research focused on outsourcing, business relationship development and leadership and was conducted in collaboration with the IT industry, where both national and international business relations have been studied. The contribution is a framework for supporting managers in outsourcing situations.
Today, her research is focused on digitalisation including business development with IT, implementation and adoption of digital technology, and data-driven organizations. She is also involved in research on transformation of the Swedish health-care system.
Karin Brodén (prev. Ahlin)
Phone: +46-708-46 33 72
eHealth, Information Sharing
I defended my dissertation in 2020 at Mid Sweden University on a dissertation entitled "Benefits of Digital Technical Information". After my bachelor's degree, I worked in the IT industry for 25 years, mainly leading system development projects of economic processes and societal critical systems in the Swedish and European context. My research area is information sharing and various aspects, such as the benefits of information sharing and theory formation around information sharing and the design of health applications. I have also researched the IT architecture of previous information services organisations. I joined the Center for Service Research - CTF at Karlstad University for a two-year post within eHealth on 1 August 2021.
PhD, Senior lecturer
Phone: +46-54-700 17 49
Developing, Testing and Integrating E-services in an Enterprise Context
The Software Development Industry is going through a quiet paradigm shift. Developers, testers and integrators are shifting towards developing e-services rather than Enterprise Applications. At the same time, the usage of cloud-based tools (eservices) in their day-to-day activities is increasing. Notions such as "Software-as-a-Service" and "Platform-as-a-Service" enable a new playing field with new prerequisites, opportunities and challenges. At the same time, the demand for integration with existing Enterprise Applications is a constant in need of careful attention. more...
Keywords: EAI, Saas, Paas, e-services, TDD, Agile Development.
PhD, Associate Professor
Phone: +46-54-700 20 27
Process-oriented business development and communicable e-services
A concept and a model with methods for process orientation in practice (PoP) co-produced with organizations and businesses to support efficient process oriented business. Concrete guidelines, wizards, templates and Quick Reference Guide has been developed based on own and others' research results and practical experience, in both the private and public sectors. PoP methods are generic that can and should be adapted to the situation of the organization's requirements. Methods used and developed in the framework of courses at the university with students and professionals, as well as the network of process orientation in practice. Further, conducted research on process-based e-service development where a holistic perspective across organizational borders increase the possibility of reaching communicable e-services, ie an information content around and in e-service that enables users to find, understand and use it. more...
Keywords: business process management (BPM), business process orientation (BPO), lightweight methodology, IO e-service development, communicability.
Rodney J. Clarke
PhD, Full Professor at University of Wollongong in Operations and Systems; Associate Professor (docent) at Karlstad University in Information Systems
Rod works at University of Wollongong, Australia, where he is the discipline leader of Operations at the School of Management, Operations and Marketing. He collaborates with Karlstad University on various research issues, especially on research education. He is a Fellow of the British Computing Society (FBCS) a foundation member serving on the Advisory Board of the AIS Special Interest Group on Pragmatic IS Research (SIGPrag), an inaugural permanent member of the Institute for Systems and Technologies or Information, Control and Communication (INSTICC), and a member of the Australian Council of Professors and Heads of Information Systems (ACPHIS).
Clarke, R. J. (2019) Elicitation Strategies for Interview and Fieldwork: Emerging Research and Opportunities. Advances in Linguistics and Communication Studies (ALCS) Series, Research Insights, IGI Global Research, 130pp. DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-6344-0
Keywords: social media semantics, service encounters, maintenance deferral.
PhD, Senior Lecturer
Phone: +46-54-700 21 26
Digital transformation and influence of digital innovations on business relationships and business values
Odd Fredriksson’s research focuses on highly topical problems concerning digital innovation transformation processes. More specifically, the research focus on transformation processes enabled by digital business and other digital systems developed for interactions between different stakeholders such as buyers and suppliers. Digital business includes IT archetypes such as e-business, e-commerce, digital service platforms, Enterprise Systems, and customer experience systems.
Odd’s research is inter-disciplinary, primarily focusing on the intersection area of marketing/business and information systems perspectives. More recently, Odd also includes a sustainability (financial, environmental and social factors) perspective in the lens when studying these complex problems at different levels (from micro to macro) and over time.
Some research questions currently in focus are:
- What are really the fundamental core elements in digital innovation and transformation processes?
- What are the critical conditions influencing successful digital business transformation processes?
- In what ways are the successful use of digital business systems affecting business relationships?
- What are the business value outcomes from successfully using digital business systems?
- How can the design of digital business systems from a sustainability perspective improve the business value outcomes?
Methodologically, Odd applies both qualitative and quantitative research methods. Designing and applying conceptual models is central in Odd’s research work. The doctoral dissertation in marketing and strategy (2021) with the title Electronic Business − Implementation and Effects, was defended at Stockholm School of Economics. In its five underlying empirical studies the focus is primarily on what conditions influence successful implementation processes of digital business and how the successful use of digital systems affect business relationships. The overall conclusion drawn from the dissertation is the crucial importance of human success conditions. The degree of commitment and pro-active actions of all involved people and stakeholders strongly influence how successful the digital business transformation processes will be.
Keywords: digital innovation, digital transformation, digital business, e-business, Enterprise Systems, business value, business relationships, human success conditions, business process development, sustainable e-commerce.
Habil. Dr., Professor
Phone: +46-54-700 17 65
Methods for Managing Complexity of E-service Design
Identification of discontinuities, integration, separation of concerns and dealing with the evolutionary changes of requirements are main bottlenecks of system development projects. A limited human mind allows focusing on one particular concern at a time in isolation. One fundamental problem is that all conventional conceptual modelling techniques are dealing with collections of loosely linked meta-models, which are defined by the different types of diagrams. Typically, system development methods are separating interactive, behavioral and structural aspects conceptual representations into disparate views. Therefore, the semantic integrity of various architecture dimensions is difficult to achieve. The difficulties are stemming from the paradigmatic mismatch between static and dynamic constructs. The advantage of our conceptual modelling method is flexibility in dealing with the evolutionary changes of requirements. Integration and visualization of interplay among structural, interactive and behavioral aspects help to separate different concerns and to identify discontinuities of conceptual representations. Overlaying interaction loops between actors provide the foundation for the composition of complex scenarios, which span across organizational and technical system boundaries. System decomposition principles target both business process modelling experts and information system designers, because they are essential for introducing evolutionary changes and for managing complexity of information system conceptualizations. more...
The new paradigm should bring significant benefits including: improved ability for organizations to maintain strategic knowledge and reduced development costs for systematic analysis of IT solutions before they are implemented.
PhD, Senior Lecturer
Inter-team Coordination in Large-Scale Agile Software Development Projects
Software development organizations worldwide are adopting values, principles, and frameworks to implement Agile ways of working. The advantages of Agile ways of working are seen in teams that are allowed a high level of autonomy. The Agile methods were initially designed for use in small, single-team projects, and routines for coordination between several teams have not been adopted in the same way as routines for coordination within the team. With several teams coordinating, autonomy must, to some extent, be sacrificed in the individual team. Work needs to be coordinated with other teams, and a project is often part of a portfolio or program. The purpose of my research is to investigate routines for inter-team coordination: how they are performed; if, how and why they are tailored, and the impacts of these added routines in relation to Agile values and principles, in particular team autonomy
I presented my dissertation "Inter-team Coordination in Large-Scale Agile Software Development Projects" in December 2020. I also have several publications before this, including textbooks in information systems and project management.
PhD, Associate Professor
Phone: +46-54-700 21 96
Models and Modelling in Information Systems Development
Information systems are developed to support information exchange among people and to perform businesses more effectively. The success of business lies not just in sophisticated technologies used, but in deep understanding and possibilities to integrate business and technical solutions. Information systems (IS) development process is the process consisting of many phases, necessary to overcome to get a final result, which should be consistent with the user requirements. Modelling and integration are two important concepts in IS development process. Modelling helps the system developers to visualize, specify, construct and document the structural and behavioral aspects of system. It is an important key to successful integration process as it allows focusing on semantics and design of integration, rather than opposed to implementation issues. There are two important issues concerning models and modelling methods in IS development process:
a) methods should provide integrated guidelines for the whole information system development process. Graphical representations should have a reasonable pedagogical capacity that promotes learning and communication among different partners involved and facilitates understanding of information systems architectures
b) Architectural descriptions of the system should be built in such a way that they have enough semantic power to represent communicational aspects of the information systems. It is necessary to have a modelling approach that provides the foundation for graphical design method that enables reasoning about system architecture across organizational and technical system boundaries. more...
Keywords: Information system development, system architecture, models, modelling, semantic integration
PhD, Senior Lecturer
Machine learning, computational linguistics and natural language processing
In my doctoral work, I worked on a framework aimed at formalizing mathematical language for mechanical validation. I explored translating informal mathematical texts into formal representations understandable by proof assistants.
I have been involved in the development of language resources such as morphologies, and lexicons for Urdu and Punjabi - two South Asian languages. Furthermore, I have been involved with the text summarization, especially for Urdu, creating benchmark corpora and assessing the impact of pre-processing on automatic summarization algorithms. In addition, my participation in text classification competitions has led to good results in abusive language detection and fake news detection for Urdu.
Measuring plagiarism in programming assignments is an essential task. I have published on the methods of plagiarism and their detection in introductory programming course assignments written in C++. I have used machine learning classifiers/models extensively to perform these tasks.
Keywords: Computational Linguistics, NLP, Formalization, South Asian languages, Linguistic Resources, Text Summarization, Text Classification
PhD, Associate Professor
Computer Support for Cooperative Work (CSCW)
From a background in biomedical sciences in healthcare, my expertise has developed in Computer Support for Cooperative Work (CSCW), including Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) and Organisation Behaviour.
I am particularly interested in researching the dynamics of collaboration, co-ordination, integration and communication of information, particularly in healthcare, for both patients and staff. When individuals work in teams, and make decisions together, information must be up-to-date, in the right place and at the right time. Developing research in the areas of information, communication, and decision-making are key areas of interest for me.
It is my ambition that through collaborative research I will contribute to building efficient and effective systems of care, with technological support, which deliver economic benefits, as well improved patient safety and clinical outcomes.
Keywords: CSCW, health informatics.
PhD, Senior Lecturer
By designing, implementing, and evaluating tools and techniques that increase privacy and transparency, Farzaneh contributed to empowering users to protect their privacy online and take control of their data. Her postdoctoral work at KaU focused on algorithmic transparency and the role of usable transparency of underlying privacy-preserving mechanisms in users' mental models of privacy technologies and their data-sharing decisions. As part of her research, she has been involved in a variety of national and international projects, including projects funded by the EU Horizon 2020 programme and the Swedish Knowledge Foundation and the collaboration with the OpenDP community aimed at improving the usability of differential privacy tools.
The main focus of her work with the Information Systems group will be on human-related security and privacy aspects, including the development and evaluation of privacy-enhancing tools and techniques that meet the needs of varying groups of users in the face of emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and the Internet of Things (IoT), which make online processing of personal data and consequently preserving data privacy and exercising privacy rights more complex. In order to promote an inclusive world where everyone could exercise their fundamental human right to privacy, we must improve the design affordances of our technologies.
MSC, PhD student
Started research education May 2022. Before that, I was hired as a research assistant after finalising my Master's studies here at Karlstad University. Bachelor exam in IT from South Africa where I also worked for several years with clearing systems for monetary transaction
Keywords: AI, health informatics, medical informatics.
PhD in Information Systems, MSc in Project Management, Senior Lecturer
Ambidexterity in Agile Software Development
To achieve efficiency in rapidly changing environments, working methods that promote change and flexibility are needed. Thus, the Agile ways of working (i.e. Agile values, principles, and frameworks) are today the most common approach to developing software and something that is currently spreading to many other industries and organizations outside of the traditional IT sector. However, it is challenging to combine the business-driven need for predictability and planning with the Agile ways of working, e.g. changeability, self-management and step-by-step development and delivery; therefore, tensions can arise at the team and organizational levels. Tensions can, for example, be experienced if the team members’ experiences are rooted in traditional project environments with stable processes and predefined requirements based on detailed planning.
Carin defended her dissertation “Tensions experienced and balancing strategies used in Agile Software Development environments” in December 2022.
PhD, Associate Professor
Phone: +46-54-700 21 70
IT in Crisis and Disaster Management
In general, my research activities have focused on the adoption of new IT/e-services including the drivers, barriers and effects connected to the adoption. I have studied e-commerce in SMEs, open source ERP systems, e-services and Facebook usage in government from this aspect. In recent years my research mainly concerns methods and software to support crisis or disaster management training. I have participated in and managed several R&D projects within this field in close collaboration with both public and private actors. My ambition is to contribute to innovative and flexible methods and software/e-services that enable organizations to execute distributed exercises and individual crisis training regardless of time and place. An additional research interest is the use of Facebook as a channel for citizen-government communication, especially in a time of crisis.
Keywords: Information Systems for Disaster Management, Computer Supported Crisis Training, Social Media, Digitialisation.
John Sören Pettersson
Phone: +46-54-700 25 53
User-centred systems development, Usable Privacy, AI as support for decision and research
Privacy and security are two important aspects of services via the web and mobile devices. Because many users do not understand threats or the solutions offered by technology, the functionality of services can be difficult to design. As a result, interactive evaluation needs to be taken into account in the design phase, and should also be included in other circumstances. My research focuses on interactive usability testing as a recurrent phase in the design cycle as well as in requirements specification process. The results of my research have been applied within the area of usable privacy, i.e. user interfaces for privacy and security functions.
Also within the area of IT-support for crisis management training I contribute with user-centred methods and aspects. A special focus is the asynchronous question: how can exercises across organisational boundaries be eased with the anywhere-anytime technology without killing the very essence of inter-organisational training exercises?
What type of communication takes place between the municipality and local residents through Facebook? In fact, it entails a heavy burden on the qualitative researcher when hundreds of posts should be categorised. Ordinary social media analysis are bound to a few categories and are directed to find ways to generate more shares, likes, etc. We want to explore suitable categories for different analyses. Presently we are exploring the possibilities to employ machine learning as support for qualitative analysis.
Keywords: IT-support for crisis management training, rapid prototyping, Ozlab, usability, digital privacy, ICT in international development, M4D (mobile communication for development).
PhD, Senior Lecturer
phone: +46-54-700 2180
End Users' behavior and Use of Business Intelligence systems and Big Data analytics
Users involvement and use of both on site and digital information systems takes us to a new data based era. Data volume, variety and velocity raise many questions about how companies and institutions can use this data to create new value for the customers.
Data production becomes natural, while value creation through new processing methods and tools become more and more challenging questioning the quality of both the input and its respective output as we use more complex methods such as machine learning algorithms.
We try to address business and societal associated questions that come with a changing behavior of end users and a new set of analytical tools that complement data analytics problem solving approach with insights through predictive and prescriptive analytics.
Through our research we look at different settings in different contexts.
Keywords: Information Systems, Big Data, Analytics, Artificial Intelligence (in business and society), Machine Learning, Knowledge Management, ICT in international development.
Phone: 054 700 2031
Digital support for participatory design
I was accepted to the PhD programme in March, 2016. Before that I was research assistant in the User Laboratory in House 21.
I am Swedish PhD student representative at the IRIS board 2021-2023.
Keywords: Rapid prototyping, Ozlab, participatory design, usability.