Elements of a Hermeneutics of Knowledge in Government : The Coalition of Public Sector Reform and Enterprise Resource Planning

Klaus, Helmut (2004) Elements of a Hermeneutics of Knowledge in Government : The Coalition of Public Sector Reform and Enterprise Resource Planning. PhD thesis, Queensland University of Technology.


In techno-organisational innovation, knowledge is reconstituted. Understanding this process in its complexity and its outcomes asks for an inquiry and interpretation that heed to the conditions at the end of modernity, and must therefore take recourse to practical philosophy. This understanding has been formulated with reference to a field study that inquired into the conduct of reform and effectuation of new information technology by the central department of a regional government over a period of approximately eight years. In considering this ambience, the study has been informed by (i) a synopsis of hermeneutic thinking on knowledge; (ii) an outline of governmentality and (information) technology; (iii) a reflection on the conditions of the social sciences and their relation to information technology; (iv) an exploration of the possibilities of social inquiry at the end of modernity. Deliberating the stipulations of social inquiry, the destructive narrative is proposed that allows for a rational and argumentative appropriation of the past, beyond scientific method and mere perceptivity. Events, ideas, and experiences indicate the reciprocal relation of political and organisational rationalities, on the one hand, and managerial and informational technologies on the other. Within these dimensions, the knowledge of governmentality is being re-defined, shifting expertise into the harness of business discipline. The rationalities of information, process, integration, prediction and performance, and ultimately efficiency, make bureaucracy itself an object of increased scrutiny. These rationalities also remind that the challenge of Ge-stell and the rule of politics-as-fabrication do neither come to pass primarily in implementations of managerial technologies, nor in instantiations of information systems, but within the articulations of the technological worldview. Due to the fragmented and contentious nature of knowledge, innovation as routine nevertheless appears disjointed and asynchronous, yet upholding the representational and disciplinary constellations.

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ID Code: 15915
Item Type: QUT Thesis (PhD)
Supervisor: Gable, Guy & Bruce, Christine
Keywords: Hermeneutics, Public Sector Reform, Enterprise Resource Planning
Divisions: Past > QUT Faculties & Divisions > Faculty of Science and Technology
Past > Schools > Information Systems
Department: Faculty of Information Technology
Institution: Queensland University of Technology
Copyright Owner: Copyright Helmut Klaus
Deposited On: 03 Dec 2008 03:52
Last Modified: 28 Oct 2011 19:40

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