The dynamic balancing act Enacting ambidextrous IT Governance within the public sector
Sammanfattning: The fourth industrial revolution standing at societies’ doorstep brings new technologiescreates both threats and opportunities alike. Having a governance model able to cope withthese changes are now as, if not more, important than ever. However, not everyone is ready,or able to seize these opportunities. The public sector in particular is known to lag intechnology adoption and is often seen as change averse. With increased demands from thegovernment and citizens alike on accelerated digitalization a significant challenge lies aheadfor the public sector to keep up with the rapid pace of digitalization. Ambidexterity, a way tobe more innovative while simultaneously being efficient at the same time, is thus moreimportant than ever. This study investigates the enactment of an ambidextrous IT Governancethrough a qualitative case-study of the initial phase of an implementation of a digital agendain a large Swedish municipality. The methodology used was triangulation of a contentanalysis of internal steering documents, and 19 semi-structured interviews with stakeholdersfrom the municipal office. Our findings reveal that the IT Governance is moving from beingpredominantly exploitative to more explorative, with focus on a centralized digitalization huband a change to a more innovative culture. Three paradoxes are identified in the governanceset out by politicians and top management in the municipality. The result is used to further thework done by Zimmerman et al. (2018) by arguing for a broader view of the enactment ofambidexterity by including the middle-management’s role in the enactment, rather than itbeing mainly the top-management or frontline-managers.
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