Document Type



Doctor of Philosophy


Business Administration

Date of Defense


Graduate Advisor

Vicki L. Sauter, Information Systems and Technology


Vicki L. Sauter, Ph.D.

Shaji Khan, Ph.D.

Dinesh Mirchandani, Ph.D.

Ashok Subramanian, Ph.D.


The failure rate of Information Systems (IS) projects is high and has been high for many years. Failed IS projects leave organizations with systems that have very low usage and a negative rate of return on their investment. System use is a key measure of IS success. User participation and involvement (UPI) during application development and configuration are key factors that influence system use. However, empirical studies have shown mixed results for the influence of UPI on system use.

This study explores the extent to which shared mental model (SMM) of a project team influences the impact of UPI on system use. Drawing on theoretical frameworks from UPI and SMM body of research, this study introduces SMM as a variable to better explain how and why UPI effects system use outcomes.

The findings are based on multiple case studies conducted over many months and reviewed eight IS projects by different teams within an organization. The findings illustrate effects of UPI on system use outcomes is moderated by SMM, such that a) higher levels of SMM positively influences the effects of UPI on system use outcome and b) lower levels of SMM negatively influences the effects of UPI on system use outcomes. The wide ranging implications of these findings for IS research and practitioners are discussed.