Daniel Smits wins Best PhD Paper Award at ECIME 2014

Daniel Smits, external PhD candidate at The University of Twente, Department of Industrial Engineering & Business Information Systems, has won the Best PhD Paper Award at ECIME 2014.

Daniel receives the award from conference chair Geert Poels. Source: Ecime 2014

The Development of an IT Governance Maturity Model for Hard and Soft Governance

Daniel co-authored the paper with his PhD supervisor Jos van Hillegersberg. The paper discusses the a way to integrate both hard and soft elements into IT governance.

Current literature on IT governance (ITG) is mostly directed at the hard part of governance, focusing on structures and processes. The soft part of governance is related to social aspects like human behavior and organizational culture. This part of governance receives much less attention in the literature. The goal of the study is to design a model which covers hard and soft governance and can be used as a basis for a maturity model (MM). We adopted a research method based on a combination of design science and a Delphi study using the Spilter Group Decision Support System. In this paper we build upon a systematic literature study we conducted. In this study we did not find a MM for ITG that covers the hard and soft part of governance. We thus designed a new maturity ITG (MIG) model using knowledge from literature and experts. As the first step we designed an initial model using literature. This initial model was discussed and improved with experts from practice during a Delphi study with four rounds.

The result was a MM with four domains and a context of the organization. The four domains are ‘Collaboration’, ‘Structure’, ‘Process’ and ‘Behavior’. Within each domain focus areas were defined based on knowledge from literature and experts. The focus areas ‘Culture’ and ‘Internal organization’ from the initial model were moved to the context component because they could be seen as value free. They belong in the situational part of the MM and not in the maturity grid.

The contributions of this paper are twofold:


a description of the focus areas of the MIG model, i.e. an ITG MM which covers both hard and soft governance: this is of value because such a model for ITG does not exist and is needed in practice;


a description of the design process of the MM: this is of value because the procedures and methods that led to current MMs have only been documented very sketchily or implicitly

More information

Daniël Smits, Jos van Hillegersberg

School of Management and Governance, University of Twente, Enschede, The Netherlands