Inaugural Meeting of CITO Reading Group
After months of talking about it, we've organised the first meeting of the Centre for Information, Technology and Organisation (CITO) Reading Group. We plan to hold regular (informal) sessions throughout the summer, based on articles/books suggested by CITO Reading Group members.
Details of the inaugural meeting are as follows:
VENUE: The Common Room
TIME & DATE: Thursday 27th May, 5.30pm
The first reading is "IT Doesn't Matter" by Nicholas G. Carr. Harvard Business Review, May 2003, Vol 81, Issue 5, p. 41-49. Copies of the article are available in my office (Q235).
ABSTRACT: As information technology has grown in power and ubiquity, companies have come to view it as ever more critical to their success; their heavy spending on hardware and software clearly reflects that assumption. But scarcity, not ubiquity, makes a business resource truly strategic - and allows companies to use it for a sustained competitive advantage. You only gain an edge over rivals by doing something that they cannot. IT is the latest in a series of broadly adopted technologies - think of the railroad or the electric generator - that have reshaped industry over the past two centuries. IT management should, frankly, become boring. It should focus on reducing risks, not increasing opportunities. For example, companies need to pay more attention to ensuring network and data security. Even more important, they need to manage IT costs more aggressively. IT may not help a company gain a strategic advantage, but it could easily put a company at a cost disadvantage.
The article provoked a strong reaction among IT executives and led to a series of debates about the business value of IT. Nicholas Carr lists the responses here: http://www.nicholasgcarr.com/articles/matter.html
It's worth browsing through this additional article as it contains links to a variety of responses from CEOs, IT magazine editors, academics and users.
Some background information on CITO can be found here: http://mis.ucd.ie/content.cfm?t=Cito&menuID=26
Hope to see you on the 27th,