Friday, March 9, 2007

PhD Research in Information Systems

Several great PhD researchers finished their dissertations the last few months. It was great to act as opponent.
Mario Duarte Canever at Wageningen University (my alma mater) defended his dissertation with the topic "From Fork to Farm - Demand Chain Management in the Agro-Food Business". He came up with a very interesting demand chain design framework with a first test in the Rio Grande do Sul Beef Business.

Erwin Fielt at Technical University Delft defended his dissertation with the title "Designing for Acceptance : Exchnange Design for Electronic Intermediaries". Erwin came up with a great theory of exchange design patterns.

Mohammed Ibrahim at Tilburg University defended his dissertation entitled "Trust, Dependence and Interorganizational Systems". He came up with the very interesting conceptualization of trust and dependence and empirically validated this new theory.

Thomas Acton at the National University of Ireland in Galway defended his dissertation with the title "Decision Support for Small Screen Information Systems". With the help of experiments Thomas showed that with the help of decision support tools that decision makers could compensate the effect of working with small screen systems such as PDA's. The "viva voce" examination in Galway was a very interesting experience.

Sanna Laukkanen at Helsinki School of Economics - see picture - defended her dissertation entitled "On the Role of Information Systems in Organization Integration: Observations and a Proposal for an Integrative Framework". She used very interesting survey and case studies to analyze the role of information systems and came up with a new theory to assess information systems as an integrative infrastructure. PhD defences in Finland are unique (they can take as long as 6 hours). I have asked 30 questions (somebody in the audience did the counting) and it took in total 2,5 hours. The discussion was excellent.

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