Last week I attended the 1st PhD summer school on”Design Science” organized by the European Research Center for Information Systems (ERCIS) on a sailing boat in the Netherlands.
Along with another 12 PhD students and the two chairs of the summer school, Prof. Karlheinz Kautz (Copenhagen Business School, Denmark) and Dr.Dr. Björn Niehaves (ERCIS, University of Münster, Germany) we spent the week with seminars on foundation papers of “Design Science” (e.g. Hevner et. al. 2004, March & Smith 1995, Simon 1981, etc.) and its applicability.
Our discussions and theme of the paper analysis evolved around 5 questions and a set of open issues:
• What is and what is not design science research?
• What are the philosophical assumptions of design science?
• What is an artifact in design science?
• What is the/a design science research process?
• What is a design science theory?
• Open issues: the relation of a kernel theory and design science theory, epistemology in design theory, utility, how to codify design theory, etc.
It was a pleasure attending the seminars that brought up different views of the papers examined; putting on the table more questions on Design Science to be answered. It was a valuable experience especially for someone like me trying to clarify my research topic and research methods.
More information about the summer school should be soon available via ERCIS: www.ercis.de