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Information Technology does not hold value in itself. What is important is how the benefits of IT can be utilized in every day places of work.

Markku I. Nurminen, Professor emeritus, University of Turku

After much research, we have come to the conclusion that employees would rather not get their work done entirely with the help of information systems--not even with good quality technical systems. It is therefore not enough that people know how to use information systems--they have to be able to control them and embed them as a part of their everyday work activities and professional ability.

Work Informatics is an area of absolute special knowledge, skill and research. The use and development of information systems has been studied from the standpoint of the work process. Research projects are inevitably multidisciplinary and to understand the organisation of work it is not enough to approach it merely from the perspective of mathematics and science. For years, questions about research have been concerned with discovering how problems can arise with the practical utilization of information systems, and how they should be solved. It is good to know the reasons for such problems and their causes in order to repair, to ease, or even to avoid them. Fundamental research and applied research is thus related to these areas. Our work cannot take place in the laboratory because the phenomenon we research resides within the organisation. At the same time, we continually ensure that relevant and important topics are being studied.

The goals of our research have to do with finding ways to help support the control of information systems. The question is not just concerned with how to induce the individual to produce more. Our research concerns mastering the control of the organisation's work as a whole. Employee motivation and commitment are also increased when control of the information systems is mastered. As a member of the information society, the employee learns to be an active citizen outside of the work environment.

The results of this research have to be applied, and then put into practice within the organization and society. That is precisely what we do in the Work Informatics Master's Programme, in which we have included research information gathered during twenty years of experience. Our Master’s programme's students now serve businesses with their special knowledge and skill during their entire careers, but already during their student days and while writing their Master’s theses they spread the message of Work Informatics for the good of businesses.