Chalk and Cheese: BPR and ethnomethodogically informed ethnography in CSCW
Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht, The Netherlands
Recently a number of methodological approaches have been presented as proffering radical solutions to organisational change. This paper discusses one such approach, Business Process Re-engineering (BPR) and contrasts it with Ethnography, a method that has gained some prominence in CSCW. The paper suggests, using a number of empirical examples, that despite some superficial similarities, the two approaches differ markedly in their analytical purchase. In particular, ethnography's emphasis on understanding 'systems' within the situated context of the work setting rather than as an abstract model of process, has consequences for the successful identification and implementation of system re-design.