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What Do Computers Do?

James Rule and Paul Attewell
Social Problems
Vol. 36, No. 3 (Jun., 1989), pp. 225-241
DOI: 10.2307/800692
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/800692
Page Count: 17
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
What Do Computers Do?
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Abstract

Few studies using representative methods have explored the effects of computing in a cross section of different kinds of organizations. This study presents results of detailed interviews in a representative sample of some 184 computerized private sector firms. Contrary to some skeptical analyses of computerization, managers of most of these organizations appeared to have shrewd instrumental rationales for their decisions to computerize. Moreover, computerization, once in place, appears to change how organizations are managed by encouraging and supporting higher levels of abstraction in management decision-making and closer, more precise control by management of organizational affairs.

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