Applying configurational analysis to IS behavioural research: a methodological alternative for modelling combinatorial complexities

Y Liu, Jozsef Mezei, V Kostakos, Li HX

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

    138 Citations (Scopus)


    An important limitation of regression-based analysis stems from the assumption of symmetric relationships between variables, which is often violated. To overcome this limitation within IS research, we propose the use of the fuzzy-set qualitative comparative analysis (FsQCA) method. The paper elaborates on the rationale for applying this approach to IS behavioural research and how to tailor FsQCA for this purpose. A systematic interpretation of the technique covering its mathematical properties and advanced features is provided. Drawing from an illustrative study of mobile government services adoption by residents of rural areas, the paper demonstrates FsQCA's potential to supplement regression-based IS behavioural research, by (i) examining asymmetric relationships between a set of antecedents and the IS phenomenon of interest, (ii) providing nuanced coverage of necessary and sufficient conditions for emergence of an IS behavioural outcome, and (iii) identifying various configurations of conditions in association with users' demographic characteristics. (c) 2015 Blackwell Publishing Ltd
    Original languageUndefined/Unknown
    Pages (from-to)59–89
    Number of pages31
    JournalInformation Systems Journal
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2017
    MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


    • FsQCA
    • configurational analysis
    • causal asymmetry
    • multiple regression analysis
    • structural equation modelling
    • Fuzzy-set Qualitative Comparative Analysis

    Cite this