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The Role of Information Systems in Supporting Exploitative and Exploratory Management Control Activities

The goal of our last research was to investigate the role of information systems (IS) in helping organizations to address the challenge of achieving a trade-off between exploitative and exploratory management control activities. The relationship between IS and management control activities is complex and stems from different theoretical backgrounds. We adopted a grounded theory approach to offer an integrative lens on this multi-facetted issue. Through the study of information systems for governance, risk management, and compliance (GRC IS) as a recent practice-driven initiative to establish the means for balancing exploitative and exploratory management control activities, we developed a grounded model of the relationship between IS and management control activities. Our model highlights the ways in which GRC IS serve as a catalyzer for establishing balanced management control systems that enable managers to simultaneously exploit and explore richer management control information. This work is to appear in the Journal of Management Accounting Research.

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