"Figure out how to code with the hands of others": Recognizing cultural blind spots in global software development

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearchpeer-review

We report on an ethnographic study of an outsourcing global software development (GSD) setup between an Indian IT vendor and an IT development division of a Danish bank. We investigate how the local IT development work is shaped by the global setup in GSD and argue that the bank had cultural blind spots toward the changes in Denmark. Three critical issues were neglected due to the cultural blind spots: 1) increased number of interruptions, 2) lack of translucence of remote colleagues' work, and 3) the re-definition of boundaries between work and articulation work. The implications of these findings include considerations for how to organize GSD practices and prepare the organizational changes that occur when moving from a co-located software development organization to an inter-organizational geographically distributed organization. Also, our findings open up discussions about the professional identity of IT developers within GSD, including extending the qualifications for IT developers.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCSCW 2014 - Proceedings of the 17th ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work and Social Computing
Number of pages13
Publication date1 Jan 2014
ISBN (Print)9781450325400
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014
Externally publishedYes
Event17th ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work and Social Computing, CSCW 2014 - Baltimore, MD, United States
Duration: 15 Feb 201419 Feb 2014


Conference17th ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work and Social Computing, CSCW 2014
LandUnited States
ByBaltimore, MD
SponsorACM SIGCHI, et al., Facebook, Grand NCE, Microsoft Research, National Science Foundation
SeriesProceedings of the ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work, CSCW

    Research areas

  • Articulation work, Cultural blind spots, Ethnographic study, Global software development (GSD), Local work practices

ID: 225660546