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Using Double Helix Relationships to Understand and Change Informing Systems

  • Hans-Erik Nissen
  • Peter Bednar
  • Christine Welch
Publiceringsår: 2007
Språk: Engelska
Sidor: 21-62
Publikation/Tidskrift/Serie: Use and Redesign in IS: Double Helix Relationships?
Dokumenttyp: Del av eller Kapitel i bok
Förlag: Informing Science Press


The paper opens by generalizing the concept of 'informing science'. It
then introduces some meta-scientific perspectives and a discussion of a
metaphor that has considerable explanatory power. Two main schools
of metascience are presented and contrasted. The difference between
treating invariances in natural sciences and in social and cultural sciences
is discussed. The double helix is introduced as a generic metaphor
to highlight important distinctions. Highlighting new distinctions
in this way can help to avoid simply assimilating them into already familiar
distinctions. The paper also discusses how some metascientific
perspectives and the transdisciplinary generalized concept of informing
science can be seen as related. Finally, the paper argues that computerized
models never keep up with continuously changing situations.
However, people always have to handle the full variety of situations,
including those not foreseen during requirements engineering. To address
this, the paper suggests balancing requirements engineering with
model transparency engineering



  • Information Systems, Social aspects
  • information systems design
  • hermeneutics- dialectics
  • cognition versus recognition
  • double helix metaphor
  • information systems


  • ISBN: 978-1-932-8860-5-4

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