Contact information

Steven Alter
University of San Francisco
School of Management
United States


information systems
Research interests

The overarching goal in my research is to help business and IT professionals understand, analyze, design, and evaluate systems in organizations. Over three decades that interest led to developing and applying various versions of the work system method (WSM) based on a core of ideas called work system theory (WST), which consists of three components, 1) the definition of work system, 2) the work system framework, 3) the work system life cycle model. Defining WST in that way makes it easier to explain the work system perspective (WSP), which builds on that core but also includes a series of extensions such as work system axioms, design principles, a theory of workarounds, a theory of system interactions, a service value chain framework, and various metamodels that extend the work system framework. A possible next step is to develop a flexible modeling toolkit based on WST and its extensions.

Professional society memberships
Association for Information Systems, Sociotechnical Systems Roundtable


Member for
3 years 10 months