Document Type

Theses, Ph.D


Available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike 4.0 International Licence

Publication Details

Sucessfully submitted to the Technological University Dublin for the award of Doctor of Philosophy in July, 2010.


This thesis sets out to examine how the role and impact of technology, in the context of the public procurement process, can be assessed by addressing it as a single bounded structural entity. The thesis specifically examines the procurement process in the Irish Health Sector. This thesis takes the view that context for the procurement process is critical and that adopting a structuration approach to the examination of the process allows for a greater understanding of the role of technology. The thesis is built around a thematic structure which examines the changing relationship between information technology systems and organisational structure. In particular the thesis focuses in on the interaction of technology and people in the context of a process. The methodological approach is the development of case studies. Three case studies are examined in particular, the first two taking the traditional approach of examining technology impact on an organisation. The third case examines the impact on the procurement process itself. Findings illustrate that this approach is useful in identifying clusters of technology, which are generally seen in isolation in the traditional approach. A key finding is that the development of technology and its role and impact is influenced at a number of levels, from European Union to Organisational. The use of Structuration as a basis for understanding the contextual settings, allows for the examination of the procurement process as single bounded structural entity, which is created by the social actors, the participants in the process. The combination of the Structuration approach and the conceptual model realises a way of examining processes that are not organisationally bound. This advances the development of the technology research discipline. The cases contribute to the empirical knowledge base by recounting sectoral changes that occurred in the Irish Health Sector during the research. The framework contributes to the theoretical knowledge by providing a novel and innovative approach to assessing the role and impact of technology on a process.