Design Science Methodology for Information Systems and Software Engineering (2014) by Roel J. Wieringa


This book provides guidelines for practicing design science in the fields of information systems and software engineering research. A design process usually iterates over two activities: first designing an artifact that improves something for stakeholders and subsequently empirically investigating the performance of that artifact in its context. This “validation in context” is a key feature of the book - since an artifact is designed for a context, it should also be validated in this context.

The book is divided into five parts. Part I discusses the fundamental nature of design science and its artifacts, as well as related design research questions and goals. Part II deals with the design cycle, i.e. the creation, design and validation of artifacts based on requirements and stakeholder goals. To elaborate this further, Part III presents the role of conceptual frameworks and theories in design science. Part IV continues with the empirical cycle to investigate artifacts in context, and presents the different elements of research problem analysis, research setup and data analysis. Finally, Part V deals with the practical application of the empirical cycle by presenting in detail various research methods, including observational case studies, case-based and sample-based experiments and technical action research. These main sections are complemented by two generic checklists, one for the design cycle and one for the empirical cycle.

Citation Roel J. Wieringa (2014). Design Science Methodology for Information Systems and Software Engineering. Berlin. Springer. Book

BibTex entry for this book:

BibTex entry for this book:

address = {Berlin},
author = {Wieringa, Roel J.},
isbn = {978-3-662-43839-8},
pages = {1--327},
publisher = {Springer},
title = {{Design Science Methodology for Information Systems and Software Engineering}},
year = {2014}

Table of contents

Part I - A Framework for Design Science

  • 1. What is Design Science?
  • 2. Research Goals and Research Questions

Pert II - The Design Cycle

  • 3. The Design Cycle
  • 4. Stakeholder and Goal Analysis
  • 5. Implementation Evaluation and Problem Investigation
  • 6. Requirements Specification
  • 7. Treatment Valuation

Part III - Theoretical Frameworks

  • 8. Conceptual Frameworks
  • 9. Scientific Theories

Part IV - The Empirical Cycle

  • 10. The Empirical Cycle
  • 11. Research Design
  • 12. Description Inference Design
  • 13. Statistical Inference Design
  • 14. Abductive Inference Design
  • 15. Analogic Inference Design

Part V - Some Research Methods

  • 16. A Road Map of Research Methods
  • 17. Observational Case Studies
  • 18. Single-Case Mechanism Experiments
  • 19. Technical Action Research
  • 20. Statistical Difference-Making Experiments

Key ideas


To do a design science project, you have to understand its major components, namely, its object of study and its two major activities (sec 1.0)

The object of study is an artifact in context (sec 1.0)

Its two major activities are designing and investigation this artifact in context (sec 1.0)

Design science problems are improvement problems (sec 1.1)

Tables and figures

References in wieringa2014design