Making a Difference in ICT research: Feminist Theorization of Sociomateriality and the Diffraction Methodology

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Over the last decade, sociomateriality appeared as a theme in IS research that has been interrogated with a variety of theoretical lenses. However, researchers have since raised methodological concerns regarding its application. This paper argues that a research methodology cannot be separated from either the theoretical lens that the research adopts or from its overarching purpose. Considering the broad range of theoretical lenses through which sociomateriality could be examined, this paper focuses on Barad’s theory of agential realism (Barad 2007). The paper provides a brief history of agential realism to shed light on the reasons behind IS researchers methodological difficulty and offers a diffraction methodology as a possible methodological guide to IS research adopting this lens. Implication for research is discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationLiving with Monsters?
Subtitle of host publicationSocial Implications of Algorithmic Phenomena, Hybrid Agency, and the Performativity of Technology
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-030-04091-8
ISBN (Print)978-3-030-04090-1
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 14 Nov 2018

Publication series

NameIFIP Advances in Information and Communication Technology


  • Sociomateriality
  • Agential Realism
  • IS research methods

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