Saturday, March 31, 2007

John Harvard’s Brew House

One of my favorite brew pubs – John Harvard’s Brew House (Harvard Square, Cambridge, MA)! Picture was taken during a business meeting. I think we were discussing new business proposals and innovative domains to explore. As far as I remember, I did not sign anything. If I did, do not hold that against me…By the way, this was during St. Patrick’s weekend…

Mobile Pictures...Recent Travels

I wanted to put my mobile phone to good use. So, I tried the camera…I was surprised by the quality of some of the pictures. Here is one from the islands to the north of Seattle.

Walking around in Seattle!

Flying around the world!

UCLA and Westwood

UCLA again...

Nittany Lion Inn at Penn State University

Univ. of Virginia

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Modifications and Innovations to Technology Artifacts

New paper published:

Desouza, K.C., Awazu, Y., and Ramaprasad, A. “Modifications and Innovations to Technology Artifacts,” Technovation, 27 (4), 2007, 204-220.

What happens to a technology artifact after it is adopted? It has to evolve within its particular context to be effective; otherwise, it will become part of the detritus of change, like the many genes without a discernible function in a living organism. In this paper, we report on a study of post-adoptive behavior that examined how users modified and innovated with technology artifacts. We uncovered three types of modifications made to technology artifacts: personalization, customization, and inventions. Personalization attempts are modifications involving changes to technology parameters to meet the specificities of the user; customization attempts adapt the technology parameters to meet the specificities of the user’s environment; and inventions are exaptations conducted to the technology artifact. This paper presents a grounded theoretic analysis of the post-adoptive behavior based on in-depth interviews with 20 software engineers in one multi-national organization. We identify a life-cycle model that connects the various types of modifications conducted to technology artifacts. The life-cycle model elaborates on how individual and organizational dynamics are linked to the diffusion of innovations. While our research is exploratory, it contributes to a deeper understanding of post-adoptive behavior and the dynamic relationship between user innovations and organizational innovations.

My Posting on Ideas4Innovation on Innovation...

Measuring Innovation: From Process to Stages to Capabilities to Measures to Business Value

Measuring innovation requires an organization to have a well-articulated innovation process. Without a process, measurement is impossible. During our research, we arrived at the following stages of innovation: (1) generation and mobilization, (2) advocacy and screening, (3) experimentation, (4) commercialization, and (5) diffusion and implementation. For each of these phases, we identified underlying capabilities that an organization must execute: (1) sources management, (2) analytics management, (3) interpretation management, and (4) action management. These capabilities are comprised of a series of activities. For instance, in sources management, (a) Identifying Sources, (b) Evaluating Source Characteristics, (c) Organizing Sources, (d) Retrieving Ideas from Sources, (e) Updating the Collection of Sources, and (f) Protecting Sources.

Once we are able to make the process of innovation explicit, we can develop measures for the process. We start by measuring the activities, then build composites for measuring capabilities, which in turn will help us measure each stage, and then the overall innovation process.

Using these measures, we can link innovation to business value measures, from process to output, and value measures.

More details will be forthcoming as we begin to release our working papers.

To measure is to know

In the 18th century, the renowned physicist Lord Kelvin remarked, “To measure is to know” and “When you can measure what you are speaking about, and can express it in numbers, you know something about it; but when you cannot measure it, when you cannot express it in numbers, then your knowledge is of a meager and unsatisfactory kind”. Although he was not speaking about the field of knowledge and innovation management when he made these statements, there may be no better field for which these statements hold true, and his words may easily be applied to that which is missing from the extant literature on knowledge management.

There is a conspicuous absence of models to evaluate such efforts. A major concern for scholars and practitioners is how to measure the status of knowledge and innovation management in an organization –– i.e., its strengths and weaknesses Managers today have to rely on anecdotal descriptions to justify investments. Without a meaningful framework for describing its trajectory, knowledge, and innovation, management is viewed by many as a mere fad.

During the I3M meeting in April, I will be presenting our model for measuring the innovation process and linking it to business value...

Monday, March 26, 2007

Social Activism in Information Systems Research: Making the World a Better Place

I have a new paper published: Desouza, K.C., Ein-Dor, P., McCubbrey, D.J., Galliers, R.D., Myers, M.D., and Watson, R.T. “Social Activism in Information Systems Research: Making the World a Better Place,” Communications of the AIS, 19 (2007), 261-277.

This paper reports on a panel held during the 2006 International Conference on Information Systems (ICIS). The panel titled, “Social Activism in IS Research: Making the World a Better Place,” was organized to question whether and how Information System (IS) research is making tangible impacts to our society. More specifically, each panelist was asked to address: (1) How can IS research, and researchers, make contributions to under-developed societies and underserved communities? and (2) How can IS researchers learn from the particularities of these communities to inform better research, teaching, and service? While each panel member had different perspectives to offer in relation to these two questions, all agreed that IS academe needs to raise its awareness and efforts considerably with a view to address the needs of underserved communities.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Contradictions in Innovation: The Critical Role of Librarians

I will be giving a talk to the Pacific Northwest Chapter of the Special Libraries Association. The talk is titled, “Contradictions in Innovation: The Critical Role of Librarians”.

In order to innovate, organizations must find ways to manage their knowledge. Knowledge need to be created, utilized, shared, duplicated, and commercialized. However, the very same knowledge must also be protected and secured. Herein lies the contradiction: to share or not to share. How do we build organizational mechanisms where knowledge can be shared, while being secured! More importantly, how do we retain the high-energy and enthusiastic culture required for innovation, while still being respectful of the needs for security and compartmentalization? I will draw on examples from government intelligence operations, innovation programs in large organizations, and even my own entrepreneurial experiences to draw some tentative conclusions…

See ( and (

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Institute for National Security Education and Research

I have a new Blog ( – the UW Institute for National Security Education and Research (UW INSER). I serve as the Director of this program. Please check it out to learn about my recent work. There is a lot of interesting stuff going on with INSER in the national security education and research space.

Monday, March 12, 2007

University of Virginia

During a recent trip to the University of Virginia…Having lunch with the little sister (a.k.a Karishma)…You have to check out this place – Marco & Luca…$2.50 for 6 Dumplings…