Vol 30 (2007)

Guest Editors

Syed Nasirin , Sonali Morar and Anastasia Papazafeiropoulou
School of Information Systems, Computing and Mathematics
Brunel University
Uxbridge UB8 3PH
United Kingdom
syed.nasirin@brunel.ac.uk

Editorial
The papers in this special issue are the extended version of the papers which were initially chosen for presentation by the SIG-ISDC at the Americas Conference in Information Systems (AMCIS2006) which was held in Acapulco, Mexico from August 4-6, 2006. AMCIS was organised annually by the Association of Information Systems (www.aisnet.org) and is now viewed as one of the leading conferences for presenting the broadest variety of research done by and for IS/IT academicians in the Western Hemisphere. This is the first time in which the SIG-ISDC has appeared as full mini-track at an AMCIS conference. The acceptance reflects the growing interest in the ISDC topics amongst the IS/IT academicians from throughout the globe.

The issue starts with its first paper by Gunawardena and Brown who investigates the management issues of IS initiatives in the Vocational and Technical Education (VTE) sectors in three developing Asian countries (i.e., Laos, Sri Lanka and Vietnam). This research is based upon a six-year study in nine VTE sector projects, undertaken through empirical investigations and a review of secondary data. They used Checkland’s (1985) FMA model of research to learn about the phenomenon of concern, and later argued that the process of managing Project Intervention Processes (PIPs) that was based upon hard approaches, was usually problematic. The Soft Systems Methodology (SSM) was presented as an alternative approach to managing the PIPs-based issues (which was poorly structured) faced by these organisations.

Laosethakul and Boulton identify the critical success factors (CSFs) for electronic commerce (e-commerce) in Thailand and explain the major influences behind these factors. This research is based upon nine in-depth case studies of e-commerce companies from different industries in Thailand. The results indicated that social behaviour and national culture (more specifically issues relating to trust and shopping behaviour) were the key influences leading to successful e-Commerce development in Thailand. The phenomenon could be explained partly by Hofstadter’s cultural dimensions as well as Thailand’s infrastructure. The findings could be employed in guiding the development of e-Commerce ventures in Thailand and other developing countries with similar cultures and infrastructures.

The third paper by Johnston, Uganda and Theys discusses the key information systems issues facing Chief Information Officers (CIOs) in South African companies. 31 CIOs were surveyed throughout the study and the findings revealed that security and control as well as building a responsive IT infrastructure were the fundamental issues which they have considered. It was also found that the main issues facing South African CIOs are dissimilar in comparison to those faced by CIOS in North America. This study has revealed some interesting insights to our understanding of IS organisations in South Africa.

Chevers and Duggan explore the employment and applicability of software process improvement (SPI) programs in Jamaican enterprises. The survey revealed that the approaches used by large-scale enterprises (particularly in the developed nations) may not be entirely applicable to the small-scale Jamaican firms. Through the Capability Maturity Model (CMM), the authors further evaluate the software production environment in these enterprises and recommend a modified software process assessment regime that is more suitable, and will increase the likelihood of SPI programs adoptions.

Finally, Birks, Zainuddin, Choo, Wafa, Nasirin and Morar argue that the well-developed literature on IT outsourcing has focused primarily upon firms in developed nations that seek low-cost economies from links with developing nations to gain competitive advantage. As a consequence, these studies may not be generalisable to firms based in developing economies, which may be trying to replicate successful IT outsourcing approaches. The paper therefore addresses the question of how generalisable the determinants of successful IT outsourcing are to a Malaysian context. The findings revealed that Malaysian managers can take some comfort in that the lessons of outsourcing can be generalised to their context.

Acknowledgements
We would like to thank the AMCIS2006 Program Committee (Rajiv Sabherwal and Richard Watson) for giving us the opportunity to introduce the SIG-ISDC for the first time at the AMCIS conference. The conference has now becoming one of the common meeting platforms for those who‘re strongly involved with studies on IS in developing countries.

Table of Contents


In this Volume, the downloads# is the total number of downloads since publication.

Articles

Is Initiatives in the Vocational and Technical Education Sector of Developing Asian Countries: A Systems Approach to the Management of Project Intervention Processes PDF
Channa Gunawardena, David H Brown # of downloads: 4107

Critical Success Factors for E-commerce in Thailand: Cultural and Infrastructural Influences PDF
Kittipong Laosethakul, William Boulton # of downloads: 10684

Key Issues for Cios in South Africa PDF
Kevin Johnston, Nixon Muganda, Karen Theys # of downloads: 3833

A Modified Capability Framework for Improving Software Production Processes in Jamaican Organisations PDF
Delroy Anthony Chevers, Evan W. Duggan # of downloads: 3282

Successful IT Outsourcing Engagement: Lessons from Malaysia PDF
David F. Birks, Yuserrie Zainuddin, Au Tin Choo, Syed Azizi Wafa, Sonali Morar, Syed Nasirin # of downloads: 3892



The Electronic Journal of Information Systems in Developing Countries.
ISSN: 1681-4835 www.ejisdc.org