Olga Volkoff

Adjunct Professor, Management Information Systems

Retired Faculty, Management Information Systems


Room: WMC 4350

Email: ovolkoff@sfu.ca

Curriculum Vitae: View


B.Sc. (UBC), MBA (U.Western ON), MPA (Queen's U.), Ph.D. (U.Western ON)


Olga Volkoff (retired) was an Associate Professor of MIS and former Associate Dean of Research and Faculty Development at the Beedie School of Business, SFU. Although retired, she continues to do research, and currently holds a position as adjunct professor. Her research focuses broadly on how organizations use large packaged software to integrate operations across functional and organizational boundaries, and on the organizational changes associated with trying to do so. After ten years of looking at large enterprise systems such as SAP, she has turned her attention in recent years to the implementation of electronic health records. She is currently exploring the challenges of implementing such systems and achieving effective use once they are implemented. Along the way she has become a champion of the application of critical realism in IS research, and the use of Affordance Theory for understanding how individuals and organizations engage with an IT artifact.

Research Interests

The use of software to integrate across functional and organizational boundaries, Organizational effects of large packaged software, Enterprise Systems, Electronic Health Records, Effective Use, Critical Realism in IS research, Affordance Theory

Selected Publications

articles and reports

Burton-Jones, A., & Volkoff, O. (2017). How can we develop contextualized theories of effective use? A demonstration in the context of community-care electronic health records. Information Systems Research, 28(3), 468-489. http://doi.org/10.1287/isre.2017.0702

Bygstad, B., Munkvold, B. E., & Volkoff, O. (2016). Identifying generative mechanisms through affordances: A framework for critical realist data analysis. Journal of Information Technology, 31(1), 83-96. http://doi.org/10.1057/jit.2015.13

Strong, D. M., Volkoff, O., Johnson, S. A., Pelletier, L. R., Tulu, B., Bar-On, I., ... Garber, L. (2014). A theory of organization-EHR affordance actualization. Journal of the Association for Information Systems, 15(2), 53-85.

Volkoff, O., & Strong, D. M. (2013). Critical realism and affordances: Theorizing IT-associated organizational change processes. MIS Quarterly, 37(3), 819-834.

Strong, D. M., & Volkoff, O. (2010). Understanding organization-enterprise system fit: A path to theorizing the IT artifact. MIS Quarterly, 34(4), 731-756.

Volkoff, O., Strong, D., & Elmes, M. B. (2007). Technological embeddedness and organizational change. Organization Science, 18(5), 832-848.

Volkoff, O., & Strong, D. (2005). Understanding enterprise systems-enabled integration. European Journal of Information Systems, 14(2), 110-120.

Elmes, M. B., Strong, D., & Volkoff, O. (2005). Panoptic empowerment and reflective conformity in enterprise systems-enabled organizations. Information and Organization, 15(1), 1-37. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.infoandorg.2004.12.001

Strong, D., & Volkoff, O. (2004). A roadmap for enterprise system implementation. Computer, 37(6), 22-29. http://doi.org/10.1109/MC.2004.3

Volkoff, O., Elmes, M., & Strong, D. (2004). Enterprise systems, knowledge transfer and power users. Journal of Strategic Information Systems, 13(4), 279-304.

Volkoff, O. (2003). Configuring an ERP system: Introducing best practices or hampering flexibility. Journal of Information Systems Education, 14(3), 319-324.

books chapters and monographs

Volkoff, O., & Strong, D. M. (2018). Affordance theory and how to use it in IS research. In Galliers, R. D., & Stein, M. (Eds.), The Routledge Companion to Management Information Systems (pp. 232-245). Abingdon, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom: Routledge.