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InPractice is an online newsletter targeted at our practitioner members. Published monthly, InPractice showcases articles published in the AIS journals (JAIS, CAIS, PAJAIS, AIS THCI,TRR, and MISQE). Authors of newly uploaded eLibrary papers will be invited to voluntarily prepare and submit a brief synopsis of their paper targeting practitioners. Dennis Galletta serves as the AIS InPractice editor. AIS invites all authors to submit summaries for considering in InPractice. The benefits of publishing in InPractice include: - Free, organized publicity for your study - Providing more opportunity for research to gain traction in the world of practice - Providing visibility for a larger body of research To submit summaries for consideration, please email Dennis Galletta at Galletta@pitt.edu with the following information: 1. A summary of the paper written in approximately 200 words, including key takeaways 2. Permission in email to use the summary through InPractice 3. Photos

 

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The Role of Knowledge Management in the Relationship between IT Capability and Interorganizational Performance – An Empirical Investigation

Posted By Administration, Friday, December 6, 2019

   

By Antonis Stylianou, Chandrasekar Subramaniam, Yuan Niu

Problem 

Research has long posited that the relationship between IT and performance can be explained by investigating overlooked key capabilities that are enabled by IT. These connections are especially not well understood in an inter-organizational (IO) context.

Firms that develop competency in managing knowledge resources across their supply chains are rewarded with higher economic benefits. A major challenge in managing IO knowledge are the competing, and often conflicting, goals of firms in the partnership. The key to dealing with this challenge may lie in the use of IT to enable better inter-firm relationships.

Summary

  • We investigate the role of relational and KM capabilities in the link between IT and performance in organizational partnerships.
  • We develop and test a comprehensive empirical conceptualization of KM capabilities that refers to the management of “business knowledge,” including the collection, organization, synthesis, and use of business data, information, and insights by the partnering firms.
  • We investigate the role of partner interdependence on IO IT, KM, and performance.

Take-Aways

  • We demonstrate empirically that IO IT creates value for the partnership. Improved IO relationships in turn strengthen IO KM.
  • The ability of partner firms to collectively manage knowledge resources positively impacts the operational and the strategic performance of the partnership.
  • When the interdependence between IO partners is stronger, partner firms can achieve greater KM benefits by investing more in their relational capabilities, such as building trust and long-term orientation and fostering collaborative partnerships.
  • Our study shows that IO relational capability and IO KM are important missing links that can explain the impact of IT on performance. 

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Blockchain for the IoT: Privacy-Preserving Protection of Sensor Data

Posted By Administration, Friday, December 6, 2019

    

By Mathieu Chanson, Andreas Bogner, Dominik Bilgeri, Elgar Fleisch, Felix Wortmann

 

Problem

The constantly growing pool of smart, connected Internet of Things (IoT) devices poses completely new challenges for business regarding security and privacy. In fact, the widespread adoption of smart products might depend on the ability of organizations to offer systems that ensure adequate sensor data integrity while guaranteeing sufficient user privacy.

Summary

  • To address this problem, we build upon previous research which indicates that blockchain technology may be a promising means to mitigate issues of data security arising in the IoT.
  • We propose a design theory, including requirements, design principles, and features, for a blockchain-based sensor data protection system (SDPS) that leverages data certification.
  • We design and develop an instantiation of an SDPS (CertifiCar) that prevents the fraudulent manipulation of car mileage data.
  • We provide an ex-post evaluation of our design theory considering CertifiCar and two additional use cases.

Take Aways

  • The evaluation results suggest that the proposed design ensures the tamper-resistant gathering, processing, and exchange of IoT sensor data in a privacy-preserving, scalable, and efficient manner.
  • Blockchain-based SDPSs inherit core characteristics of blockchain technology (e.g., tamper-resistance) only if fundamental design principles are considered.
  • In particular, sensor data needs to be protected from source to sink and verified by cross-validation, as universally “tamper-proof” processes cannot be ensured.
  • Hybrid blockchain architectures are necessary to enable scaling, given the current state of technology.
  • SDPSs are particularly useful in the case of multi-stage data pipelines that cross organizational boundaries and involve a potentially large ecosystem of players.
  • A blockchain-based SDPS is often perceived as “neutral” and might be accepted as an industry standard much faster than a centralized system.
  • Blockchain technology offers firms the opportunity to leverage its built-in state-of-the art cryptography technology for free, which can reduce the need for security specialists.

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The Magical "We": Enhancing Collaboration Transparency in Grounded Theory Method in Information Systems Research

Posted By Administration, Friday, December 6, 2019

   

By Samuli Pekkola, Matti Rossi and Kari Smolander

Problem

Grounded theory (GTM) research aims at understanding practice issues from observing it. When researchers collaborate and use GTM, they often report their research method by stating "we did the research." This, however, does not clarify how they reconciled differences in the researchers' viewpoints and their omitted descriptions may lessen the quality of the study, possibly resulting even incorrect conclusions. Omitting details can make it difficult to observe and assess collaborative work.

Summary

This paper analyzes a sample of papers from top Information Systems journals to describe how IS researchers have collaborated during the GTM process and reported their research process. We also describe and compare alternatives for collaboration using GTM. We highlight potential issues that arise from different world views, and provide guidance and examples of how these issues can be avoided, and how the research process can be made transparent.

Take-aways

We advise researchers to use one of our four modes of collaboration as a basis for:

  • Deciding which mode best fits with the research endeavor, questions, and strategy
  • Considering what activities are needed to establish and maintain a common ground, how much coordination overhead and coordination activities are necessary throughout the research process
  • Reporting the research process honestly and transparently in their scientific publication.

These pieces of advice improve researchers' and practitioners' awareness on the GTM research process and increase its transparency. Practitioners would then be more aware of how researchers are studying their organizations, and what problems can hinder their work. Being aware of possible problems in turn helps the reader assess the interpretations of the research data, judge the quality of the study, and assess its results.

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User Satisfaction with Information Systems: A Comprehensive Model of Attribute-level Satisfaction

Posted By Administration, Friday, December 6, 2019

  

By Reza Vaezi, Annette Mills, and Wynne Chin

This article proposes and validates a comprehensive model to understand user satisfaction with IT and software applications. The model, which used previous concepts from a heavily-used information systems success model, can provide measures at various levels of granularity. The strongest predictors of satisfaction with the system were ease of use and response time. The strongest predictor of satisfaction with the service, in the context of a PeopleSoft implementation, was accessibility and availability of support services.

Key Takeaways:

  • It provides a three-level attribute drill-down approach where practitioners can go into further detail on what are the key drivers of satisfaction.
  • The first level is overall satisfaction.
  • The second level shows overall satisfaction as impacted by the information content provided, the technology itself, and support services.
  • The third level provides even more detail focusing on key attributes associated with second level attributes.  Examples of third level attributes impacting satisfaction include information accuracy and relevance, system reliability and ease of use, and service responsiveness and reliability.
  • The model is designed to be easily understood, and used by industry practitioners to measure user satisfaction with different aspects and qualities of their IT systems and services.
  • The results can be used to identify areas in need of improvement and measure impacts of various actions on overall user satisfaction, and at the detailed level in relation to the information provided, the technology itself, and support services and their attributes.

Read the full paper here.

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An Analysis of the Evolving Intellectual Structure of Health Information Systems Research in the Information Systems Discipline

Posted By Administration, Thursday, October 31, 2019

  

By Langtao Chen, Aaron Baird and Detmar Straub

Problem:

More than 500 articles related to health IT were published in IS journals between 1990 and 2017. While remarkable that such a significant quantity of quality health IT research is being published in IS journals, it is nearly impossible, even for researchers who read in this area regularly, to comprehensively understand what this research has contributed.

Article Summary:

To address this problem, we applied analytics methods to systematically analyze the 571 health IT articles published in IS journals between 1990 and 2017. Our article describes how and why we conducted this research as well as the key health IT trends, research theme dynamics, article relationships, and thought leaders systematically identified via our analyses.

Key Takeaways:

  • We find four, central health IT research themes: (1) Health IS Acceptance, (2) Health IS Implementation, (3) Health IS Outsourcing, Performance, and Investment, and (4) EMR and EHR. These findings suggest that much of the core of health IT research centers on how health care organizations invest in and then assimilate enterprise health IT, such as EHRs.
  • Our findings suggest that five health IT research themes offer significant opportunities for future research: (1) Health Analytics and Data Mining, (2) Mobile Health, (3) Health Information Interchange, (4) Clinical Pathway and Treatment Management, and (5) Online Health Communities and Digital Services.
  • We also identify specific leaders in health IT as a whole and within their thematic sub-communities. These findings offer academic institutions insights into who could lead their efforts to capitalize on health care and IS initiatives.

To learn more, visit https://aisel.aisnet.org/jais/vol20/iss8/5/.

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How do Individuals Interpret Multiple Conceptual Models? A Theory of Combined Ontological Completeness and Overlap

Posted By Administration, Thursday, October 31, 2019

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By Jan Recker and Peter Green

Problem

  • Many modern information systems are large and complex. Analyzing or designing them means that IS professionals need to consider multiple perspectives.
  • IS professionals use conceptual models – semi-formal graphical visualizations of real-world domains – to help build their understanding. The number and variety of different models can be large.
  • We do not know how IS professionals can effectively and efficiently choose between different models, use them to develop an understanding of an IS domain, or how useful different combinations of conceptual models are for their work.
  • We do not know whether analysis or design practices building on multiple conceptual models is effective or how it can be better supported through better model design.

Summary

  • We propose new hypotheses about:
    • How IS professionals select between different conceptual models for systems analysis and design,
    • How they read multiple models to develop a complete and clear understanding of a real-world IS domain, and
    • How useful different combinations of conceptual models are to IS professionals.
  • We suggest that IS professionals will prefer combinations of conceptual models that maximize the coverage of real-world domain elements, while at the same time, minimizing overlap of distinct information elements between different models.

Take-Aways

  • IS professionals should be mindful of whether they require a simplified versus a more complete representation of the real world to complete their tasks effectively.
  • When conceptual models are developed to aid IS professionals, tradeoffs between completeness and clarity should be taken into account already to make the models fit for use.

Learn more at https://aisel.aisnet.org/jais/vol20/iss8/1/

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Constraining Opportunism in Information Systems Consulting: A Three Nation Examination

Posted By Administration, Friday, October 11, 2019

By Richard T. Watson, Gregory S. Dawson, Marie-Claude Boudreau, Yan Li, Hongyun Zhang, Wei (Wayne) Huang, and Ibrahim Al-Jabri

Problem

  • Opportunism, devious self-interest behavior, is a persistent social problem. Attempts to restrict opportunism, such as legal and ethical codes, have shaped societies for millennia.
  • Opportunism differs from mere profit maximizing because it takes advantage of a trusting relationship to advance self-interest.
  • According to a previous study by three of the authors, a majority of IS consultants and their clients have observed opportunism.
  • Such practices might include breaking promises, being untruthful, or not acting in the other party’s best interests.
  • Information asymmetry, when one party knows more about a situation than another, is the root cause of opportunism.

Summary

  • This article examines the relative effectiveness of eight different constraint mechanisms on IS consultants in China, Saudi Arabia, and the United States, for seven types of projects with different levels of information asymmetry, tacit knowledge, and explicit knowledge.
  • Generally, consulting clients in the United States believe that social constraints are more effective, while those in China and Saudi Arabia favor legal constraints.
  • The research suggests that these findings are a result of differences in legal systems and the foundations of social norm formation.

Take-Aways

  • When information asymmetry is high, clients should use one or more social constraints
  • When information asymmetry is low, clients should use a legal constraint
  • For complex engagements, clients should use an advisor firm to constrain opportunism
  • Clients should develop project relevant tacit knowledge prior to a consulting engagement to lower information asymmetry
  • Consultants should recognize that national differences can impact how clients select and deploy constraint options

Learn more at: https://aisel.aisnet.org/jais/vol20/iss7/12/

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Addressing Key Challenges to Making Enterprise Blockchain Applications a Reality

Posted By Administration, Friday, September 20, 2019

by Mary Lacity in MIS Quarterly Executive September 2018, Volume 17, Number 3, pp. 201-222.

- Blockchain adoption frequently promises more value than what is delivered.
- Challenges include identifying standards, government regulation, governance models, and ecosystem viability.
- A study of three organizations reveals their strategies for successful adoption.
- Five key questions should be asked when considering a blockchain application:
     1. Is a blockchain the right solution?
     2. How are blockchain standards being established?
     3. How can a blockchain solution comply with legislation given the regulatory uncertainty?
     4. How should a blockchain solution be governed?
     5. How can a viable ecosystem be established?

Summary:
Daunting challenges in blockchain standards, regulations, shared governance models, and viable ecosystems impede progress. There is currently a gap between the business value that is promised and how much is delivered. Lacity describes the strategies that three organizations are pursuing to address those challenges. The organizations are LO3 Energy, a startup; Moog, Inc., a traditional enterprise, and the Center for Supply Chain Studies, a nonprofit organization serving as industry consortium coordinator. Answering the five questions above can help managers know whether their organizations should lead, be fast followers, or take a slower pace in exploring enterprise blockchains.

Learn more at https://aisel.aisnet.org/misqe/vol17/iss3/3/.

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A Ten-Step Decision Path to Determine when to use Blockchain Technologies

Posted By Administration, Friday, September 20, 2019

By Asger B. Pedersen, Marten Risius, and Roman Beck In MIS Quarterly Executive June 2019

General take-aways:
- Blockchain technology provides a bewildering set of options without much guidance.
- Firms must decide not only the feasibility of using blockchain technology but also which type of system to use: permissionless public blockchain, permissioned public blockchain, or a permissioned private blockchain.
- Ten decision steps can be followed to narrow the options dramatically. The ten questions are described in detail and address issues such as whether there is a need for sharing data publicly or with multiple parties, if it is desirable to use third parties, whether there are conflicts of interest or differing or changing rules, if logs are needed, and how consensus is determined.

Summary:
Recent research on blockchain technology shows faster growth of its adoption in tracking supply chain activities than in banking and financial services. This study focused on how maritime shipping can realize benefits of blockchains, especially by consulting a new managerial framework to assess feasibility and also determine what type of system to implement. A ten-step yes/no decision process provides guidance on whether a block chain is required, and if so, recommends a permissionless public blockchain, permissioned public blockchain, or a permissioned private blockchain. Knowing the type of needed blockchain system will prevent the loss of valuable time and will reduce expenses in their application.

Learn more at https://aisel.aisnet.org/misqe/vol18/iss2/3/.

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BBVA's Data Monetization Journey

Posted By AIS, Friday, September 20, 2019

by Elena Alfaro, Marco Bressan, Fabien Girardin, Juan Murillo, Ida Someh, and Barbara H. Wixom In MIS Quarterly Executive June 2019, Vol. 18, No. 2, pp. 117-128.

General take-aways:
- Data monetization efforts can have tremendous revenue enhancing and cost reduction impacts on firms.
- A firm with 16 monetization efforts were studied in this paper.
- Actions that led to their successful efforts were:
        1. Balance short term goals and long-term capability creation
        2. Invest in social good projects
        3. Assess the value and impact of data science projects
        4. Educate all employees about data science
        5. Compensate data scientists with high nonmonetary benefits

Summary:
BBVA, a global financial group, established a data science center of excellence to lead its data monetization activities. In 16 monetization projects over three years, they sold information solutions, improved business operations, and wrapped products with analytics features. Their impacts were to raise revenues, lower costs, and increase their capabilities and credibility. This summary of their activities and experiences can be helpful for many other firms.

Learn more at https://aisel.aisnet.org/misqe/vol18/iss2/4/.

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