Faculty opponent: Professor Eivor Oborn, Warwick Business School, The University of Warwick
Department of Applied IT, University of Gothenburg
"As organizations around the world embrace digital technologies in new ways, they experience a process known as digital transformation. This process is not just about technological changes – digital transformation also involves organizational changes that enable and result from engagements with digital technologies.
Despite the attention given to this topic, we need to learn more about the role of meaning-making in digital transformation. Simply put, it can be thought of as idea generation in practice. The thesis builds on insights from a case study that I conducted between 2018-2022 of the firm Sydved operating in the Swedish forest industry. In the study, I observed and engaged in meaning-making that took place in Sydved’s “innovation labs”, or meetings that were designed for exploring new ways to organize in digital ecosystems.
In this thesis, I show how the concepts of frame shifting and frame blending are useful for unpacking meaning-making in digital transformation. These concepts explain how digital transformation is shaped through “talking” that explores similarities and differences between alternative futures which involve digital technologies (what may be) and an organization’s past (what has been). In this way, the thesis offers an alternative approach to understanding how organizations navigate challenges of both meaning-making and time in digital transformation."