Information systems as a discipline in the making: comparing EJIS and MISQ between 1995 and 2008

José-Rodrigo Córdoba, Alan Pilkington, Edward W. N. Bernroider

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper aims to shed light on the dynamics of information systems (IS) as a
discipline in the making. We use the ideas of the sociologist Abbott to propose
three different stages of a discipline’s development: differentiation, competition,
and absorption. These stages reflect how disciplines go through different cycles
and how they acquire, consolidate or lose elements of knowledge. We map
these stages using citation and co-citation analyses of two main IS academic
journals (EJIS and MISQ) from 1995 to 2008. Our results indicate that IS is
currently in a stage of absorption, with research being consolidated around the
theme of ‘IS acceptance’. Dominant models and frameworks related to this
theme are predictive and thus lend themselves usable for positivistic and
quantitative research. In this stage there is also a healthy degree of variety in IS
including dormant elements which could reignite. Implications derived from
our findings aim to help in the consolidation and extension of knowledge
about IS in both academia and practice
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)479-495
JournalEuropean Journal of Information Systems
Issue number5
Early online date10 Jan 2012
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2012


  • Information systems
  • Disciplines
  • Abbott
  • bibliometrics

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