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CITGE | Research


CITGE is an integral part of Kogod School of Business and located on the campus of American University. The Center for Information Technology and the Global Economy is located in Washington, DC, a city where decisions on technology policies and globalization issues regularly affect the impact of technology and its spread around the world. The Center conducts multidisciplinary research that is relevant to the ongoing issues and challenges of information technology. The research undertaken by CITGE covers wide range of topics such as IT systems, high technology clusters and country studies. The research is both qualitative and quantitative and employs both qualitative and quantitative research techniques.

Featured Research

Report Finds Obstacles to Open Government Initiative
Professor Gwanhoo Lee, an online journal for federal executives, recently featured Kogod Professor Gwanhoo Lee's research on the Obama administration's open government initiative. Lee's report, which was published by the IBM Center for the Business of Government, said that although the initiative launched almost two years ago, numerous obstacles keep federal agencies from implementing the policies.

Federal agencies face challenges such as outdated technology, online privacy risks, and a lack of public engagement and resources when it comes to implementing open government policies. Last month, the Obama administration issued instructions to federal agencies directing them to develop plans the make information about the enforcement of rules accessible within four months, but the Lee's research found that this may cause agencies to attempt too many projects at once, beyond what their current resources can manage.

"Without sufficient funding and dedicated personnel," the report said, "government agencies will find it challenging to develop and sustain new engagement tools and programs." View Full Article

Public Value of e-Government
Professors William DeLone and Murray Scott (National University of Ireland, Galway)

Understanding success in Information Systems (IS) is a complex challenge made more difficult when set in the public sector environment. While success in the private sector may depend on quality, efficiency and profit improvement, public sector evaluation must combine these concerns with accountability, citizen trust and public preferences. This research program adopts the Public Value paradigm to provide a theoretical success framework for eGovernment in order to guide public sector IS evaluation in practice and research. Drawing upon survey data from experienced eGovernment users, this study seeks to empirically assess what citizens’ value in eGovernment web-based services. The findings of this program provide practical guidance on the elements of Web site quality that have a positive impact on success and, in particular, the success of recent innovations in the use of new social media tools for eGovernment. This program aims to support Government agencies in understanding the success of their initiatives by developing practical measurement tools that can be adopted and customized to improve citizens’ assessment of value.

[Working/Published Papers]

Coordinating in Enterprise Architecting
J. Alberto Espinosa, Frank Armour, Wai Fong Boh

Enterprise architecture (EA) is becoming more critical for modern organizations whose competitive strategies are tightly linked to their underlying information technology (IT) infrastructure.The objective of this research is to study the coordination challenges and most effective processes and practices to overcome such challegened in large-scale collaborative technical tasks. We focus more specifically on the enterprise architecting task. In this research we plan to conduct several interviews with enterprise architects and EA stakeholders from multiple organizations to better understand the challenges and best practices associated with coordinating the architecting process. Our goal is to identify and classify these dependencies and to learn how they can be managed more effectively. Therefore, our main research questions are: (1) what are the main types of dependencies – i.e., coordination challenges – that exist between various architecting activities? (2) what are the most effective coordination processes to manage these dependencies among various stakeholders; (3) how do EA governance structures and mechanisms enhance or constrain coordination in the process of enterprise architecting?

Current Projects

The Center for Information Technology and the Global Economy (CITGE) funds research projects that are likely to produce significant knowledge that would advance both theory and practice. The abstracts for working or published papers resulting from research projects are available in this webpage. Please contact the authors indicated in the abstracts if you wish to receive full papers.

Ambidextrous Software Process for Global IS Service
Gwanhoo Lee, J. Alberto Espinosa and William DeLone

Increasingly more IS projects are geographically dispersed. As a result, IS projects are affected by various boundaries such as geographical distance, time separation, organizational boundaries and cultural differences. These factors create project risks including poor communication, coordination, and information sharing. Therefore, one of the key challenges for IS organizations today is to coordinate their geographically-distributed project work effectively to deliver quality systems on time and on budget. To accomplish this in today's dynamic, global environments, processes, people, and technology employed by IS projects need to exhibit ambidexterity-i.e., simultaneous rigor and agility. Drawing upon survey data from IS project managers, this research program's goal is to test a model formulated to explain and predict IS project success based on ambidextrous project capabilities. Specifically, the model identifies IS development process rigor and IS development process agility as two key IS project capabilities that moderate the negative effects of team boundary complexity and system requirements dynamism on project coordination. Effective project coordination in turn leads to IS development.

[Working/Published Papers]

Geographically Distributed Enterprise Architecture
Professors J. Alberto Espinosa and Frank Armour and Wai Fong Boh (Nanyang Technology University, Singapore)

Enterprise architecting is becoming critical for most modern organizations whose competitive strategies are tightly linked to the underlying information technology (IT) infrastructure. This is so because an enterprise architecture takes a holistic view of the business processes and functions and the information technologies supporting them, rather than the more detailed perspectives provided with application-by-application views. Our understating of effective enterprise architecting activities is still evolving and this practice is replete of challenges. These challenges are further compounded by the fact that organizations are often geographically dispersed. Furthermore, business processes, technology infrastructure components, information and the people involved may be distributed in different geographic configurations, making it very difficult to comprehend. In this article, we make a first attempt at providing a theoretical framework to guide our thinking for practice and research in this area. We build on the foundations of coordination theory and geographically distributed collaboration research.

[Working/Published Papers]

Global IS Development Success
Professors William DeLone, J. Alberto Espinosa and Gwanhoo Lee

This research program is studying why and how global IS development projects succeed or fail. The research recognizes that global IS project teams are separated by multiple boundaries (e.g., distance, time, culture, organizational), which makes their work more difficult, thus reducing the project's potential to succeed. At the same time, global IS projects succeed when certain coping mechanisms (e.g., communication, coordination, sharing knowledge, building trust) are implemented to reduce the negative effects of these global boundaries.

[Working/Published Papers]

Time Separation and Coordination Costs in Global IS Projects Professors J. Alberto Espinosa and Erran Carmel

This research project is investigating which coordination mechanisms and processes are most effective in helping IS development teams coordinate across geographic distance and time. The coordination mechanisms under study include: task programming, communication, shared knowledge and team awareness. This project has also received subsequent funding from INTEL.

[Working/Published Papers]

Online Programming Marketplaces
Professor Erran Carmel

Online Programming Marketplaces are portals for buyers of IT services to meet sellers. The sellers are typically individual programmers or small software firms. Increasingly more of these sellers are offshore. This study determines whether online programming marketplaces are facilitating more offshore software development.

Strategies for Managing Country-level Risks
Professor Jennifer Oetzel

This field research project involves surveying managers of insurance and high-tech firms in Mexico to determine how they assess and manage political and economic risk (both sovereign and sub-sovereign risks) on an ongoing basis. More specifically, I am interested in determining whether some firms have developed more effective strategies for identifying and managing country risk events than others and whether there are performance differences between foreign and local firms. This study is an extension of my previous research on country risk. 

Managing a Firm's Portfolio of Virtual Interorganizational Connections
Professors Sally Fowler and Gwanhoo Lee

Information technologies have revolutionized the ways in which organizations can create and manage their external linkages, including the information of " virtually embedded ties." The central concern of this research is to study the ways which organizations develop and manage virtually embedded ties with other organizations. This research also examines how socially embedded interorganizational ties and virtually embedded ties interact over times.

Completed Past Projects

Consumer Perceptions and Online Purchasing
Dr. Susan Lloyd

This experimental research program looks at how online firms can convert visitors to buyers by establishing consumers' trust. Recent research suggests that the most common method of increasing consumer confidence-posting privacy and security statements-is less effective than such "surface" elements as website design. The results of four studies support the notion that investing in website design is a critical variable in influencing online purchase intentions because it influences the component of trusting beliefs most strongly related to online purchase intentions: ability. These effects were strongest when consumers' goals were to search rather than browse and when the purchase involved risk.

[Working/Published Papers]

Innovation in the Biotech Industry
Professor Tomasz Mroczkowski

This research project uses an integrated view to examine innovation in the biotech industry to extend our understanding of innovation management. In-depth interviews from eight organizations in the Maryland area formed the basis for the investigation into the challenges of managing the innovation process in biotechnology firms. This research finds that the innovation process is inadequately understood, and organizations therefore have not undergone the transformations that may be necessary to push products to markets. This research has dispelled several myths associated with biotech and provides a conceptual framework for application of the integrated innovation model appropriate to biotech firms.

[Working/Published Papers]