School of Business
Information Technology and Business Strategy
- graduate of Universities of Glasgow
- taught at Universities of Stirling,
- currently lecturer at University of Wales
- co-editor "Business Strategy and Information Technology"
- co-author "Information Resources Management" (Butterworth-Heinemann,
- supposedly writing "Strategic Management and Information Technology"
- New to teaching in North America
- Using new technologies:
- World Wide Web (Hypertext Mark-up Language, HTML)
- video-conferencing (perhaps)
The rules of the game
- I am a poor ignorant foreigner
- I will gone by Christmas
- within reasonable limits we can make our own rules
- assignments are fixed, the rest can be adjusted
The scope of the course
- adding value with IT
- improving competitive performance
- managing the IS/IT function
What is NOT in the course.
- lots of hands-on
- lots of technology
What are the key issues?
Sectors where excellence in the use of IT might be found:
The mass market is over, since we can now manufacture on demand
at the same price as large batches.
Use of computer technology allows companies to add value. For example,
an electricity utility, can offer systems to help customers manage
their use of electricity. At first sight this discourages the
purchase of their product. However, it allows the sale of added-value
services in the energy efficiency business. Moreover, by reducing
the volume of electricity sold, it allows the closure of older
generating capacity, or plants which have environmental problems.
It may simply allow additional sales. Most importantly, it takes the
company from selling a "commodity" to selling an added-value product.
Flavour of the month management
Books sold in airports for busy executives to read on the plane
on the way to their next meeting. One month it is total quality
management, next month empowerment, then business process
redesign. The imprints left by such attacks on rational
management can be considerable.
Examples of such material include the "Business Secrets of Attilla
the Hun", management lessons from Star Trek: The New Generation
(complete with a cover photograph of actor Patrick Stewart). A
recent volume on leadership by Will Carling is another example.
He is captain of the England Rugby Team and has been linked
romantically with HRH The Princess of Wales by the yellow press.
Georgetown University is international in scope
Genuinely global course (though only one document in French so far)
- South Korea
- United States of America
Intentionally omitted a case on groupware or CSCW. This is covered
by our use of electronic mail, news and the Web.
- government (e.g., Minitel)
- airlines (i.e., 7-Eleven)
Are there national differences?
No - a global market
- in infrastructures
- in organisational practices
- in governmental policies
K Hugh Macdonald (ex-ICL, ex-military, Visiting Professor University
Edward R Guthrie (Colonel (retired) US Army, ex-US Department
of the Army)
Jim Cowie (ex-British Telecommunications, World Bank)
John R Beaumont (ex-University of Bath, Energis Communications,
Building and Information Business