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Miscommunications on IT projects: a case study of the effect of user's and developer's cultural background

Jiménez Quesada, Elena (2022) Miscommunications on IT projects: a case study of the effect of user's and developer's cultural background.

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Abstract:To satisfy the increasingly complex needs of users, companies have developed multidisciplinary teams to integrate the knowledge of different fields into technology development. Participatory design has grown in the last years as a form of multidisciplinary team collaboration. Born as a method to involve the user in the design process, it has proven a valuable tool for ensuring user satisfaction. However, the miscommunications among the users and developers may diminish its advantages. Among the reasons behind communication flaws, culture is an essential factor that has not been considered in the existing literature about user-developer interactions, although it is a recurring issue among international organisations. Therefore, this research aims to study the influence cultural background has on the miscommunications between users and developers. To do so, qualitative and quantitative studies have been used to collect data during an academic project part of the Bachelor of Communication Science, where students had to deliver a virtual reality environment with the help of developers. In addition to filling out a survey, the participants were interviewed twice during the project. The results show that cultural traits like leadership, disagreement and persuasion were fundamental but not predominant to explain the miscommunications. Our analysis concludes that culture, together with context and personality traits, are essential factors in understanding the challenges of user-developer interaction. Therefore, cross-cultural management should be considered a richer field merging with team management to address the future of technology development
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:05 communication studies
Programme:Communication Studies MSc (60713)
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