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Business Information Systems Seminars

The Discipline of Business Information Systems seminar organiser is Uri Gal.

Upcoming Seminars

5th Jun 2015 - 10:00 am

Venue: New Law School Annexe SR 342

Speaker: Professor Allen Lee,

Title: Some lessons from Philosophy and History for research in Business School

Abstract: Business, as practiced in society, is the object of study in business-school research, where such study can theorize about, and prescribe for, business as actually practiced in society. Research, as practiced in business schools, can be the object of study in philosophy and history, where such study can theorize about, and prescribe for, research as actually practiced in business schools.

Numerous lessons for research in business schools can be derived from philosophy and history.  Among those that can be considered are:

  • What statistical analysis is, and is not, good for in science.
  • Successful practice does not require science.
  • More data does not mean better generalization (Hume’s problem of induction and Goodman's new riddle of induction).
  • Statistical behavioral research in business schools is just adding, as in pre-Copernican astronomy, epicycles upon epicycles in order to perpetuate empirically untestable research programs.
  • Logical positivism, which advocates that social science take the natural-science approach to research (and hence responsible for “physics envy”), has long been discredited by the philosophy of science, the very school of thought that originated logical positivism in the first place.

Bio Allen S. Lee has been Professor of Information Systems at Virginia Commonwealth University since 1998.  He served on the editorial board of MIS Quarterly for over 15 years, including a term as its editor-in-chief, and was a founding senior editor of MISQ Executive.  His research program over three decades has involved identifying lessons from the philosophy and history of science and applying them, in the information systems discipline, to show not only how qualitative research can be done rigorously, but also how quantitative research equally needs to live up to the requirements of science.  Recently he has taught doctoral seminars on systems theory, social theory, and qualitative research methods, as well as undergraduate database courses.  His bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees are from Cornell University, the University of California at Berkeley, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.


RSVP Monday 1 May, 2015

19th Jun 2015 - 10:00 am

Venue: Merewether Room 398

Speaker: Dr Felix B Tan, Auckland University of Technology

Title: Skill Archetypes of Successful IT Project Managers: A Repertory Grid Investigation

Abstract: Both the academic and practitioner literature agree that competent Information Technology (IT) project management plays an important role in IT project success. Although effective project management is critical to better project outcomes, little empirical research has investigated skill requirements for IT Project Managers (PMs). This study addresses this gap by asking nineteen practicing IT PMs to describe the characteristics of both competent and incompetent IT PMs. A semi-structured interview method known as the repertory grid technique is used to elicit these skills. These skills are further sorted into nine skill categories: client management, communication, general management, leadership, personal integrity, planning and control, problem solving, systems development, and team development. This study complements existing research by providing a richer understanding of several skills which were narrowly defined (e.g., client management, planning and control, and problem solving) and by introducing two new skill categories which had not been previously discussed (e.g., personal integrity and team development). Analysis of the individual repertory grids reveals four distinct ways in which study participants combined skill categories to form skill archetypes for effective IT PMs. We describe these four skill archetypes - general manager, problem solver, client representative, and balanced – and discuss how this knowledge can be useful for practitioners, researchers, and educators. The presentation concludes with suggestions for future research.

Bio: Dr Felix B Tan is Professor of Information Systems and Head of the Business Information Systems department in the Faculty of Business and Law at Auckland University of Technology, New Zealand. He served as the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Global Information Management from 1998-2012. He was on the Council of the Association for Information Systems between 2003 and 2005.

Dr. Tan is internationally known for his work in the global IT field. His research interests fall broadly in 2 categories:  IT user behavior and the management of IS. Dr Tan has published in MIS Quarterly, Information & Management, Information Systems Journal, Journal of Information Technology, European Journal of Information Systems, IEEE Transactions on Engineering Management, International Journal of Electronic Commerce, Communications of the AIS, Communications of the ACM as well as other journals and refereed conference proceedings.

RSVP Monday 15 June, 2015