A number of problems have served as motivators for this study: Environmental deterioration as a risk to economic facilitation; missed organisational green competitive opportunities; South Africa's need as a developing country for the growth of small, medium and micro-enterprises (SMMEs); and information technologies as an aid for ecological and economical problems. Accordingly, this research has aimed to suggest environment-friendly information technology policies that can be implemented in South African SMMEs, engendering mutually beneficial sustainability for the three domains (or contextual study elements) ‘Environment’, ‘Organisation’ and ‘Information Technology’. The methodology used involves an interpretive research approach, a literature survey based on document analyses, and an empirical study based on green information technology expert interviews. In collecting the data, the theory of three of the five Multiple Perspectives Approach perspective types was applied; for the data analysis, the Hierarchical and Signed components constituting the Directed Graphing Method where applied. The output of this study includes an explanation of the relationships that exist between the study elements and that lead to mutually beneficial sustainability. It also includes the identification of Key Sustainability Factors for each of the research elements, as high level critical goals to be achieved by green information technology policy developers in pursuing mutually beneficial sustainability. Furthermore, the output contains contextually consolidated Key Sustainability Factor Enablers, to serve as policy recommendations for implementation by green information technology practitioners toward ensuring mutually beneficial sustainability; and, finally, a sample integration of these Key Sustainability Factor Enablers, now referred to as Conceptual Policy Views, such as may have been produced by typical green information technology policy developers in selecting and prioritising views for organisational utilisations. In answering the main research question of this study, as well as providing its key outcome, a conceptual framework has been produced which comprises information technology policies that are supported to be feasible for implementation as well as of mutual benefit in terms of sustainability for the ‘Environment’, South African SMME ‘Organisations’ and ‘Information Technology’ itself. This provides an ordered and related means of implementing information technology policies, while also relating these policies to their respective mutually beneficial Key Sustainability Factors. Strategic planning, toward incorporating the conceptual framework into organisational policy, is thus enabled. This study concludes with an evaluation of its findings and execution, together with future research recommendations.
Dissertation (MCom)--University of Pretoria, 2012.