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Journal of Organizational Computing and Electronic Commerce 8

Editors:Andrew B. Whinston
Publisher:Lawrence Erlbaum Associates
Standard No:ISSN 1054-1721
Links:Table of Contents
  1. JOCEC 1998 Volume 8 Issue 1
  2. JOCEC 1998 Volume 8 Issue 2
  3. JOCEC 1998 Volume 8 Issue 3
  4. JOCEC 1998 Volume 8 Issue 4

JOCEC 1998 Volume 8 Issue 1

The CSDL Model for Cooperative Systems Design BIBAFull-Text 1-27
  Flavio DePaoli; Andrea Sosio
Although synchronous cooperative systems have been a major research focus in computer supported cooperative work (CSCW) for over a decade, there is still a lack of general models supporting their specification and design. Cooperative systems design language (CSDL) is a language supporting the design of synchronous cooperative systems as modular, component-based, open distributed systems where a shared work space is implemented by either shared traditional single-user applications or dedicated cooperative applications. The architectural model underlying the language is based on a clean separation of concerns between the components implementing communication, coordination, shared workspace, and the users' interface and private functionality. The resulting systems can be easily tailored to different social contexts or different execution platforms through architectural reconfiguration or the substitution of single components. This article illustrates how this model applies to the design of different classes of cooperative systems, aimed at supporting different social processes, and hence, characterized by different functional requirements. Namely, we discuss the design of communication-oriented systems (such as electronic blackboards), cooperation-oriented systems (such as shared editors), and process-oriented systems (such as prescriptive group decision support systems and workflow management systems).
Designing Organizational Memories: Concept and Method BIBAFull-Text 29-55
  Fons Wijnhoven
Organizational memory, has become a popular theme in management studies, leading to theoretically valuable conceptualizations, which, however, often fail in their practical usability. Recently, organizational memory has also become a topic in the field of information systems. This article tries to bridge the gap between these organizational conceptualizations and information systems by proposing methods for organizational memory contents (knowledge and information) analysis and the analysis of organizational memory means (procedures and media). These methods describe an approach to organizational memory design that, according to the author, should be complemented by methods for organizational memory evolution. The design approach is further clarified by a case scenario.
The Impact of Group Support Systems on Corporate Teams' Stages of Development BIBAFull-Text 57-81
  Margaretta J. Caouette; Bridget N. O'Connor
Through this quasi-experimental field study, we investigated the impact of group support systems (GSS) on the development of two comparable corporate teams solving actual business problems. Tuckman's stages of development were the lens through which we viewed the team-building process. Tuckman maintained that teams go through a developmental schemata of forming, storming, norming, performing, and adjourning, and suggested that the way teams develop has a direct impact on both their task and social outcomes. Literature related to GSS and group processes, group characteristics, and task complexity provided the bases for the questions offered. In this field study, meeting sessions were audio-taped, transcribed, and used to paint a picture of the meeting process; to better understand what happened, we interviewed participants. Findings indicate that the two teams developed quite differently and that GSS impacted all stages, but most noticeably the storming stage. The commitment: of the teams to the assigned task, group composition, and leadership were identified as moderating factors.

JOCEC 1998 Volume 8 Issue 2

An Integrated Framework for Group Support Systems BIBAFull-Text 83-107
  Jerry Fjermestad
In this article, I consolidate the work of prior frameworks for group support systems and present the results of that consolidation using the major factors of contextual, intervening, adaptation, and outcome variables. The end result is a comprehensive list of factors that have been studied or suggested, organized into the preceding 4 categories. The model proposed offers a control system type interpretation of the 4 factor dimensions.
Mediating Group Influence With a Group Support System: An Experimental Investigation BIBAFull-Text 109-126
  Danial L. Clapper; Ephraim R. McLean; Richard T. Watson
This is an investigation of the use of group support systems (GSS) to mediate group influence. GSS researchers have explored the impact of a GSS's ability to facilitate creativity in idea-generating tasks such as brainstorming; this study can be viewed as an extension of this research stream from idea generation to the choice phase of group decision making. In an experimental setting, 48 participants were each combined with groups of 3 confederates. In each group the confederates attempted to influence the participant to move from his or her initial position to the majority position. The communication configuration used by each group was either no GSS, a GSS in a face-to-face setting, or a GSS in a distributed setting. In addition, each group used 1 of 2 different tasks to determine the impact of task type on group influence. The results indicate that the GSS significantly lessened the ability of the group majority to influence an individual member for both of the task types which the groups performed.
Information Overload in a Groupware Environment: Now You See It, Now You Don't BIBAFull-Text 127-148
  Ulrike Schultz; Betty Vandenbosch
The growth of computers and communications during the last several decades has caused great concern about information overload, a state in which the amount of information that merits attention exceeds an individual's ability to process it. Paradoxically, technology has also been called upon to provide mechanisms that enable us to cope with the information glut that it has helped generate. Groupware constitutes such a technology. It simultaneously increases both the volume of communication that managers have to deal with and the degree of control they have over the information they consider. We investigated how information load, human processing capacity, and control over communication interact in a groupware mediated environment and the net effect of these factors on information overload. Our longitudinal study at a large insurance company provided evidence that both the amount of information and control over it increase with the adoption of a groupware technology. Information overload did not overtly manifest itself in this organization, leading to the possibility that humans' tendency toward selectivity protects them from being overwhelmed by information. This selectivity may, however, inhibit the potential positive effects that groupware was designed to deliver.
An Action Research Study of Effects of Asynchronous Groupware Support on Productivity and Outcome Quality in Process Redesign Groups BIBAFull-Text 149-168
  Ned Kock; Robert J. McQueen
We describe a study of asynchronous groupware effects on outcome quality and productivity of process redesign groups. Seven groups were studied in 2 organizations. All groups followed the same group methodology, which comprises a process redesign meta-process with 3 stages -- process definition, analysis, and redesign. The study indicates that asynchronous groupware support was perceived by group members as considerably increasing group productivity by reducing group duration and the organizational cost of groups, and by allowing members to participate in several groups at the same time. The study also indicates a slight perceived increase in group outcome quality. The causes for these results and their organizational implications are discussed.

JOCEC 1998 Volume 8 Issue 3

A Discrepancy-Based Measurement Approach for Data Integration BIBAFull-Text 169-193
  Gregory E. Truman
In this article, I present a measurement approach for assessing data integration levels at the organization and organization subunit levels. By incorporating consideration for specific theoretical properties related to data integration into its design, the measurement instrument relies on a discrepancy-based measure to adequately account for these properties. Data from 48 organizations of the Group Insurance industry are used to test the reliability and validity of the measurement instrument. The results suggest that the discrepancy measure, based on the difference between respondents' ideal (or normative) and actual estimates of data integration, is a valid indicator of data integration. However, I conclude that the efficacy of using a discrepancy measure, over the more parsimonious use of its components, should be considered in light of methodological, theoretical, and practical considerations.
Combining Business Process Reengineering Concepts and Object-Oriented Technology for Effective Organizational Design BIBAFull-Text 195-216
  Emilio Paolucci; Fabio Bonci; Vincenzo Russi
Today's business world is facing a plethora of managerial and technological changes beyond the capacity of any firm to control and absorb them. Customer satisfaction, development of new products, and introduction of new technologies are well-known driving forces, but their fast mutation and turmoil are making them unpredictable. Business process reengineering (BPR) is considered the most disruptive approach for designing organizations that can thrive in this turbulent environment. Although there is an increasing number of experiences that testify to its positive results, at present it is used mainly in large companies, and small and medium firms consider it as a risky and expensive activity. Within this framework, this article discusses a methodology for designing and implementing BPR, developed to overcome most of the limits that still bind its diffusion. This methodology supports firms in embedding reengineered processes knowledge owned by organizational units and in integrating available software and hardware, The focus of this article is on linking business and software modeling to allow the development of ad hoc new business processes while reducing risk of wasting time and money for useless requirements or for stiff solutions. The proposed methodology, starting from organizational requirements derived from business modeling, supports the analysis of costs, lead time, and quality or completeness trade-off of developed solutions. The phases of the methodology are discussed in detail together with an application example and results obtained from existing successful applications.
Error Reduction in Distributed DSS Through Coordination of Modeling Activities: Simulation Study BIBAFull-Text 217-245
  Gyeung-Min J. Kim; James R. Burns
As end-user computing in general moves toward maturity, the integration of departmentally developed computer models has been a major concern for information systems (IS) researchers. However, decision support systems (DSS) have placed emphasis on performance of individual modeling activities, overlooking the need for coordination mechanisms to integrate the models into a reliable whole as a distributed DSS. In this article, we investigate coordination issues associated with end-user models with a focus on how such coordination affects decision quality through reduction of errors. The article first enumerates the various types of model interdependence and then proposes a coordination strategy for accommodating each interdependence type. Using simulation methodology, we demonstrate that quality, as measured by the number of errors, can be improved through coordination of individual modeling activities. The simulation results help both practitioners and researchers define a new role of the IS function around the coordination of end-user modeling activities, in addition to the current role of transferring technological skills to end users.

JOCEC 1998 Volume 8 Issue 4

Adoption and Diffusion of Telemedicine Technology in Health Care Organizations: A Comparative Case Study in Hong Kong BIBAFull-Text 247-275
  Olivia R. Liu Sheng; Paul Jen-Hwa Hu; Chih-Ping Wei; Kunihiko Higa; Grace Au
Rapidly changing dynamics and turbulence in the business environment have made technology management increasingly critical to the bottom-line survival and competitiveness of many organizations. Adoption and diffusion are 2 challenging technology management issues facing health care organizations. As health care is becoming an increasingly important sector of the national and the global economy, contemporary problems in access, equality, and costs have demanded innovativeness from health care organizations that, in response need to adopt and institutionalize appropriate technological innovations for service improvement and expansion. A case in point is telemedicine technology that has the potential to support physicians' patient care and improve health care organizations' competitiveness.
Economic Benefits of Renting Software BIBAFull-Text 277-305
  Vidyanand Choudhary; Kerem Tomak; Alok Chaturvedi
In this article, we analyze the economics of a monopoly firm selling and renting a packaged software product by employing an intertemporal monopoly pricing game to model the firm's pricing strategy. The game models the software product as two versions; the first version is available in the first period and the second, a revised version, is available in the second period. The second version benefits from consumer reports of bugs and requests for additional features. This is modeled using delayed network externalities that take effect only in the second period. We observe that the introduction of the rental product in the first period leads to an increase in profits. We also find that the firm's profits are monotonically increasing with the intensity of the network effect. As the intensity of the network effect becomes stronger, the firm chooses to reduce its prices in the first period to expand the size of its network and later increases prices in the second period. Because many of the customers who choose to rent in the first period subsequently make a purchase in the second period, the firm is able to capture the benefits of network externalities in the first period without reducing sales in the second period. For high levels of network intensity, consumer surplus and social welfare are also higher.
Electronic Call Market for Commodity Transactions: Design of Computer-Mediated Order Matching System BIBAFull-Text 307-334
  Ho Geun Lee; Ronald M. Lee
Commodity exchanges provide potential market structures for electronic trading because commodity products have relatively simple and well-standardized product attributes. Most existing electronic trading systems are introduced for financial exchanges, where qualities of traded products (such as stocks and bonds) are homogeneous, thus taking into account only bid and offer prices for computer-mediated order matching. However, a single commodity market, such as the cotton or grain market, is made up of many heterogeneous goods that are similar to each other but have different product qualities and contract terms. In addition to the price, commodity traders have other pertinent preference ranges over product attributes and delivery conditions. We delineate an electronic call market system for commodity trading, which optimizes the realization of traders' utilities over extended product attributes beyond the price. The electronic call market not only maximizes the total surplus of market participants based on bid and ask prices but also satisfies their qualitative preferences over other attributes, which are difficult to include in the quantitative prices. The trading mechanism of the electronic call market integrates an economic auction model with a social choice model to produce a Pareto-improved transaction. Market simulations are conducted to validate the performance of the proposed electronic call market. The order matching system of the electronic call market is implemented using constraint logic programming.