Alta Van der Merwe

Alta Van der Merwe
University of Pretoria | UP · Department of Informatics

PhD

About

121
Publications
95,990
Reads
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1,193
Citations
Introduction
Alta van der Merwe is the current Deputy Dean: Teaching and Learning in the Engineering, Built Environment and Information Technology Faculty at the University of Pretoria. She is also a full professor in the Department of Informatics, University of Pretoria. Alta van der Merwe does research in Information Systems (Business Informatics).
Additional affiliations
October 2011 - present
University of Pretoria
Position
  • HOD: Informatics
August 1993 - December 2008
University of South Africa
Position
  • Professor (Full)
January 1991 - September 1993
North-West University
Position
  • Lecturer

Publications

Publications (121)
Article
Full-text available
Technological disruption enabled by the internet revolution has resulted in an exponential increase in the growth of new technologies and the resultant technology disruptions in the workplace. Disruptive technologies are changing the rules of competition in organisations. Most chief information officers agree that there could be significant value i...
Article
Full-text available
Organizations require the means to navigate Society 5.0. This is a knowledge-intensive society where a sustainable balance must be created for social good through a system that integrates cyberspace and physical space. With significant data, information and insight exchange based on knowledge in people and machines, organizations need to make sense...
Chapter
The Design Science Research (DSR) paradigm is highly relevant to the Information Systems (IS) discipline because DSR aims to improve the state of practice and contribute design knowledge through the systematic construction of useful artefacts. Since study designs can be understood as useful artefacts, DSR can also contribute to improving conceptual...
Chapter
The fast-paced evolution of digital technologies, termed the fourth industrial revolution (4IR), influences organisations to realise digital technology potential from a holistic point of view. In this context, organisational competitiveness relies on whether organisations’ business value-creation capabilities are adaptable and flexible. The purpose...
Chapter
This research is in the enterprise architecture (EA) research field. EA is a developing discipline that in broad terms emphasizes all aspects of organizational design and development, including enabling information technology. However, there are various interpretations and understandings of EA, with little agreement on them. Therefore, organization...
Article
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Understanding and explaining small- and medium-sized enterprise (SME) growth is important for sustainability from multiple perspectives. Research indicates that SMEs comprise more than 80% of most economies, and their cumulative impact on sustainability considerations is far from trivial. In addition, for sustainability concerns to be prioritized,...
Article
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Design science research (DSR) is a popular research approach used in information systems for the design, development and evaluation of artifacts. There is some guidance in the literature on how to conduct DSR as an approach to find solutions for wicked problems. One of the areas that students struggle with that are involved in DSR is the confirmati...
Chapter
Enterprise Architecture (EA) has had an interesting and often controversial history since its inception in the late 80’s by pioneers such as John Zachman. Zachman proposed the Zachman Framework for Enterprise Architecture (ZFEA), a descriptive, holistic representation of an enterprise for the purposes of providing insights and understanding. Some s...
Chapter
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The so-called fourth industrial revolution or Industry 4.0 (I4.0), with its potentially disruptive technologies, is changing the way we socialise, live and work and provides opportunities for organisations to innovate and disrupt. Although organisations are acknowledging the emergence of I4.0 and realise the importance of being ready for its impact...
Chapter
The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) is a new concept that has the potential to add value to any industrial organisation that wants to embark on the implementation thereof. Due to this newness of IoT in industrial operations, an increase in cost and maturity in terms of data handling, together with only a few implementations. There was a gap in...
Chapter
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Information Systems (IS) as a discipline is still young and is continuously involved in building its own research knowledge base. Design Science Research (DSR) in IS is a research strategy for design that has emerged in the last 16 years. Junior IS researchers are often lost when they start with a project in DSR. We identified a need for a set of g...
Chapter
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Both information systems outsourcing and knowledge management are well-established business phenomena. Regardless of organisational reasons for information systems (IS) outsourcing, knowledge remains the single most important resource for organisations to be managed. In an attempt to provide tactical mechanisms for creating and managing shared know...
Chapter
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Everywhere in the world, governments consider the use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) to drive improvements in service delivery with wide-ranging e-government initiatives. The health sector in particular faces the twin challenge of growing populations requiring services and dwindling resources in the face of reduced funding. De...
Chapter
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The challenges of healthcare delivery in Africa are well documented. Advances in technology present an opportunity to address some of these challenges in a cost-effective manner. Notwithstanding these advances, many initiatives fail to deliver the desired benefits, with a lack of citizen engagement cited as one of the reasons for this failure. Desi...
Conference Paper
Enterprise architecture (EA)¹ is a highly specialized and skilled discipline. Within the organizational context, EA is implemented and applied at strategic, tactical and operational levels. The main role of EA is the alignment of IT and the business to ensure that the business is supported and enabled by IT. Considering the relative newness of ente...
Conference Paper
The role of information systems (IS) evolved from supporting basic business functions to complex integrated enterprise platforms and ecosystems. As a result, enterprises increasingly adopt enterprise architecture (EA) as a means to manage complexity and support the ability to change. We initiated a study that investigates the pivotal role of enterp...
Chapter
The advent of digitalization exposes enterprises to an ongoing transformation with the challenge to quickly capture relevant aspects of changes. This brings the demand to create or adapt domain-specific modeling languages (DSMLs) efficiently and in a timely manner, which, on the contrary, is a complex and time-consuming engineering task. This is no...
Chapter
Diagrams are widely used in our day to day communication. A knowledge of the spatial patterns used in diagrams is essential to read and understand them. In the context of diagrams, spatial patterns mean accepted spatial arrangements of graphical and textual elements used to represent diagram-specific concepts. In order to assist with the automated...
Chapter
Enterprise knowledge is currently subject to ever-changing, complex and domain-specific modeling requirements. Assimilating these requirements in modeling languages brings the benefits associated to both domain-specific modeling languages (DSMLs) and a baseline of well-established concepts. However, there are two problems that hamper the speed and effic...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Design science research (DSR) is well-known in different domains, including information systems (IS), for the construction of artefacts. One of the most challenging aspects of IS postgraduate studies (with DSR) is determining the structure of the study and its report, which should reflect all the components necessary to build a convincing argument...
Article
Full-text available
Both information systems outsourcing and knowledge management are well-established business phenomena. Regardless of organisational reasons for information systems (IS) outsourcing, knowledge remains the single most important resource for organisations to be managed. The integration of shared knowledge represents the blending of organisational skil...
Conference Paper
The Internet disruption has resulted in an exponential increase in the growth of new technologies [1] and resultant technology disruptions within the workplace [2]. With the rapid changes in the technology landscape, Chief Information Officers (CIO's) and key decision makers need to learn to maneuver though the plethora of emerging technologies tha...
Conference Paper
The value of corporate governance has received attention in the last decade after a number of incidents where fraudulent activities resulted in close down of organizations. Many countries responded with stricter regulations. In this article we argue that the correct use of Business Process Management Systems (BPMS) in an organization may support go...
Conference Paper
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This paper presents a domain-specific modelling language for patient transferal management (DSML4PTM). To foster reusability within the modelling community, existing modelling languages were taken into account as far as possible and then extended as was needed by the application domain. The language was developed through iteration following the des...
Conference Paper
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A key constraint for growing small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in South Africa is the business skills required to grow the enterprises through the stages of transformation. Business process management (BPM) is one of the skills that could add value during transformation. Understanding the stages of transformation during SME growth would assist to...
Chapter
Fruit fly control and management in Africa has been the topic of several scientific investigations resulting in diverse sources of knowledge on the topic. Despite the existence of this knowledge, frequently it is not readily accessible to all targeted beneficiaries; this can be due to, for example, the remote locations of farms and the complexity o...
Conference Paper
The Web Ontology Language OWL is a prominent ontology language for specifying ontologies. Although OWL ontologies are well-used for representing and reasoning about knowledge in various domains, they are sparsely studied for visual language specification. The work in this paper, therefore, explores OWL for visual language specification by specifyin...
Conference Paper
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When a large organisation spends a notable proportion of its budget on creating a positive web presence, one would assume the web site to be well designed, usable and to provide a good user experience. This is not always true. In this case study we investigated a large telecommunications organisation based in Africa to determine the value it places...
Conference Paper
Project management is one of the oldest management processes with reference already to project management during the building of the pyramids. However, the current form of project management with the support of different tools such as electronic management systems, is relatively new. Although there are different project types the processes, princip...
Article
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In higher education institutions various VLSs have been formally adopted to support online teaching and learning. However, there has been little research on patterns of VLS use among educators. The purpose of the research was to provide a descriptive analysis of VLS feature usage, and associated challenges at two South African higher education inst...
Article
Full-text available
Although many South African teachers have access to the internet, they often refrain from using available online resources to improve the quality of their own teaching. In an attempt to promote Mathematics teachers’ effective use of online resources, we developed a web-based platform. This article reports on the first phase of a broader project tha...
Conference Paper
Enterprise architecture (EA) is an organisational strategy increasingly used to describe the integration of business and information management in complex enterprises. Organisations can prevent human -- related problems and promote acceptance of new organisational strategies, such as EA, if they know what behaviour to expect from stakeholders and w...
Conference Paper
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The outsourcing of information systems has grown as an accepted business trend, with several reasons being cited for considering IS outsourcing. However, there is evidence that IS outsourcing threats may impact negatively on the initial intent to outsource, as well as the success of an IS outsourcing arrangement. Managing successful IS outsourcing...
Article
Enterprise engineering (EE) emerged as a new discipline to encourage comprehensive and consistent enterprise design. Since EE is multidisciplinary, various researchers study enterprises from different perspectives, which resulted in a plethora of applicable literature and terminology, but without shared meaning. Previous research specifically focus...
Article
The paper deals with Next Generation Enterprise Information Systems in the context of Enterprise Engineering. The continuous alignment of business and IT in a rapidly changing environment is a grand challenge for today's enterprises. The ability to react timeously to continuous and unexpected change is called agility and is an essential quality of...
Article
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Today, and for the foreseeable future, organizations will face ever-increasing levels of complexity and uncertainty. Many believe that enterprise architecture (EA) will help organizations address such difficult terrain by guiding the design of adaptive and resilient enterprises and their information systems. This paper presents the “Grand Challenge...
Article
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Compared to positivist survey and interpretive case study research, design science research (DSR) is a relatively novel and unfamiliar research paradigm within the computing field in South Africa. In light of recent interest in the DSR paradigm, this study sought to investigate how local computing researchers familiarise themselves with an unfamili...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Enterprise engineering (EE) is emerging as a new discipline to address the design of the enterprise in a holistic way. Although existing knowledge on enterprise design is dispersed and fragmented across different disciplines and approaches, previous research presented an enterprise evolution contextualisation model (EECM) as a representation of the...
Chapter
Full-text available
Organisations have over time realised that leveraging their already-accumulated knowledge assets are the most cost effective way to increase their competitive standing and to harness innovation. In choosing to outsource their information systems (IS), they may unintentionally fragment their knowledge assets by missing critical learning opportunitie...
Chapter
Full-text available
Information systems (IS) outsourcing is a complex, multi-layered and a multifaceted concept. An organisation may gain access to knowledge it does not own in-house or be able to obtain it at a lower price by entering into an outsourcing relationship. At the same time, the organisation may risk losing key skills and capabilities unless the outsourcin...
Conference Paper
Diagrams are often studied as visual languages with an abstract and a concrete syntax (concrete syntax is often referred to as visual syntax), where the latter contains the visual representations of the concepts in the former. A formal specification of the concrete syntax is useful in diagram processing applications as well as in achieving unambigu...
Conference Paper
In scientific inquiry definitions serves the purpose of describing what something is in terms that are concise, precise and allows for clear communication. Since the start of the enterprise architecture (EA) research field the issue of the definition of terms and fundamental concepts has been continually debated. The ongoing debate is indicative of...
Conference Paper
With numerous enterprise architecture management (EAM) methodologies, frameworks, and tools, there are still no universally excepted standard on what Enterprise Architecture (EA) really means to practicing architects. Traditionally practitioners concentrated on specific aspects of EA, such as tools, repositories, components and frameworks. However,...
Article
Full-text available
The interpretation of financial data obtained from the accounting process for reporting purposes is regulated by financial accounting standards (FAS). The history and mechanisms used for the development of ʻThe Conceptual Framework for Financial Reporting’ (the Conceptual Framework) as well as the financial accounting standards resulted in impressi...
Conference Paper
Enterprise engineering originated as a practice with most publications focusing on the practical facets without the underlying scientific foundation. Foundational works emerged from different authors in recent years, including Dietz, Hoogervorst and Giachetti. According to Gregor, the bodies of knowledge or theories encompassed in a discipline need...
Conference Paper
Even though the Zachman Framework is a highly referenced framework for enterprise architecture (EA), there is still a lack of adoption by EA practitioners. Some of the factors that contribute towards this lack of adoption is the absence of accepted methodologies for adopting the Zachman Framework as an EA approach, as well as the lack of CASE tools...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Enterprise Architecture (EA) proponents claim that the implementation of EA in an organisation resolves the complexity of increasingly distributed and multi-faceted enterprises. In support of this goal, several EA frameworks exist and the main purpose of most of these frameworks is to assist with the challenges that are the result of the increased...
Conference Paper
Enterprises that exist today came into being mostly in an ad-hoc manner rather than being systematically designed. A piece-meal design of enterprise components led to a lack of coherence and consistency between numerous components of the enterprise. At present, both researchers and practitioners acknowledge the need for an overall view of the enter...
Article
A significant challenge that faces IT management is that of aligning the IT infrastructure of an enterprise with its business goals and practices, also called business-IT alignment. A particular business-IT alignment approach, the foundation for execution approach, was well-accepted by practitioners due to a novel construct, called the operating mo...
Article
The debate ensues as to whether the traditional focus of computing research on theory development and verification and therefore has adequate immediate practical relevance. Despite increasing claims of the potential of design science research (DSR) to enhance the utility of the IT artifact and consequently practical relevance of research, many comp...
Chapter
The term enterprise architecture has been in use for almost thirty years if the seminal paper (published in 1987) by Zachman is taken as its starting point. As a scientific area of study this time span is relatively short but for the practitioner it could be a time long enough for the original interest to wane. Gartner's research reflects that the...
Conference Paper
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Over the past two decades, strong technical convergence has been observed between computing and engineering. Computing in this context includes Computer Engineering, Computer Science, Information Systems, Information Technology and Software Engineering. Within the traditional engineering disciplines (including Computer Engineering), academic progra...
Chapter
Organisations have to adapt quickly to changes, continuously investigate innovations and be flexible in order to remain competitive. The information technology (IT) landscape has evolved to enable organisations competitive advantage and to meet targets such as reduced costs, scalability, flexibility, capacity utilisation, higher efficiencies and mo...
Article
The use of patterns and pattern languages in enterprise architecture (EA) is a relatively novel concept. Although both the concepts of patterns and EA are over 30 years old, the notion of design patterns is hardly applied to EA. There is a lack of pattern collections specifically devoted to EA: only a small number of patterns and pattern collection...
Article
This paper describes the development of an ontology for use in a military simulation system. Within the military, aircraft represent a significant investment and these valuable assets need to be protected against various threats. An example of such a threat is shoulder-launched missiles. Such missiles are portable, easy to use and unfortunately, re...
Article
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Staying competitive in the 21st century requires enterprise unity and integration, allowing for agility to accommodate swift changes in strategy as markets evolve and new opportunities emerge. The foundation for execution approach acknowledges the volatility of strategy and suggests the use of an operating model (OM), which is a commitment to a way...
Conference Paper
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Cloud computing presents a new model for IT service delivery and it typically involves over-a-network, on-demand, self-service access, which is dynamically scalable and elastic, utilising pools of often virtualized resources. Through these features, cloud computing has the potential to improve the way businesses and IT operate by offering fast star...
Chapter
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The shift to innovation and knowledge as the primary source of value results in the new economy being led by those who manage knowledge effectively. Today’s organizations are creating and leveraging knowledge, data, and information at an unprecedented pace—a phenomenon that makes the use of technology not an option, but a necessity. Software tools...
Conference Paper
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A key constraint for growing small and medium enterprises (SMEs) is the business skills required to grow the enterprises through the stages of transformation. Criticism against growth stage models for SMEs is of concern, since these models contain the typical knowledge that appeals to managers of small enterprises as guidance in how to manage growt...
Conference Paper
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ERP systems are widely used by large enterprises for managing functional areas of the enterprise. However, recently ERP systems have also been introduced to the small enterprise market. ERP systems are now considered an important small enterprise management aid that may contribute to the sustainability and growth of the small enterprise. Although t...
Article
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The advent of the Internet and the World Wide Web has revolutionised practices in business, government, health, and education amongst others. In education, the Internet and World Wide Web opened new doors for teaching and learning, thereby affording educators an opportunity to deploy new teaching, learning and administration strategies and affordin...
Article
The purpose of accounting is to gather financial data of a business or entity, to interpret this data and to report the results in financial statements to the different users thereof. The interpretation of financial data is regulated by financial accounting standards including a conceptual framework that were developed to facilitate the reporting o...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The adoption of Enterprise Architecture (EA) concepts within organizations is causing an interest in the methodologies and supporting technologies available. Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) supports EA in many facets. However, there is much dissolution with regard to the relationship between EA and SOA within organizations. There are also poten...