The Master thesis explores the knowledge sharing that takes place during the requirement engineering phase of globally distributed information systems development. In recent years, due to globalization, information systems development activities have become increasingly distributed across different geographical locations. Requirement engineering is an important and knowledge intensive phase in the development of information systems. Requirement engineering is the process of identifying, analyzing, documenting, validating and managing the requirements of a system. Effective and efficient knowledge sharing during the requirement engineering is vital for the successful development of information systems. However, the global distribution of the stakeholders has affected knowledge sharing during requirement engineering in various ways making it more challenging.
Drawing on the theories of knowledge sharing within the field of information systems, this interpretive research study aims at exploring stakeholders’ perceptions about the challenges met during the knowledge sharing in requirement engineering phase of globally distributed information systems development projects. More specifically, this Master thesis explores the perceived challenges and generates a list of suggestions to overcome the challenges by conducting qualitative semi-structured interviews among the key stakeholders, both customers and business analysts.
The findings indicate that the knowledge sharing is influenced by challenges such as cultural differences, language barriers, communication issues, coordination issues arising from multiple stakeholders, time difference and difficulty in sharing tacit knowledge in the globally distributed settings. Participants’ suggestions for overcoming these challenges include cultural trainings, kick off meetings, language trainings, use of translator, face-to-face communication and interaction, video conferencing, scheduling important meetings in the common suitable timings, identification of the main stakeholders, having a mediator and making close observations with face-to-face interactions.
Keywords: Information Systems, Information Systems Development, Requirement Engineering, Knowledge Sharing, Global Distribution, Outsourcing