Developing a collaboration system for pancreatic cancer research: a clinical design science study
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Great potential exists for the use of information systems (IS) in medical research, as they already form the backbone of several long-term medical research projects. IS can potentially support practitioner-researchers (practitioners who conduct research in their areas of practice) by enabling collaboration, particularly when the number of cases is low and the treatment strategy is centralised. However, practitioner-researchers and academic researchers differ in their research approaches. In this clinical IS research effort, we designed an IS, together with a local hospital, for supporting research on pancreatic cancer by applying a design science research (DSR) approach. We also observed how DSR is accepted and used by practitioner-researchers in this context. Consequently, we not only developed an IS but also gained insights into the benefits of DSR in projects with heterogeneous participants, namely those from various fields with different experiences and requirements. The results show that DSR contributes to mutual understanding, transparency in the design process and long-term benefits for all parties involved, which was further confirmed by post-hoc interviews.