IOM 445 Networks and E-Commerce

- Description -


IOM 445, 20854D

Spring 2003

MW, 10-11:50AM, BRI 8
Professor Langdon: 310.5

Office hours: Mo 3-5PM in HOH 400B or by appointment


Executive Summary

IOM 445 Networks and E-Commerce is focused on the impact of digital interactive technology on business strategy, the structure of distribution channels and the topology of supply chains.



Overview. Information technology can be applied within organizations to improve operations and to create strategic advantage. This course focuses on the latter. New online intermediaries such as eBay, Amazon and E-Trade are examples of how IT has been leveraged to change the strategic landscape in many markets and industries. This strategic application of online and Internet technology will be emphasized.
Typically, many information technology (IT) components have to be integrated into an information system (IS) in order to provide strategic advantage. The Internet and Web are good examples. Not until the Web browser arrived in late 1994 did the Web have a strategic business impact—more than four years after the invention of its core components, the HTTP, HTML and URL protocols.
As software code becomes the factory in the "new economy" it takes (1) IS design skills and (2) an understanding of the IS implementation process to align new IT capabilities with business strategy or even exploit IT to develop new strategic options. Too often, companies fail because the implementation of a business plan takes too long, is too expensive or not possible at all.

Purpose of the Course. The course is designed to help you think about IT as a consultant would need to:

“The CIO has suddenly become the second most important executive in a company. A visionary CIO is the key to success” (Vinod Khosla, Co-Founder of Sun Microsystems and Partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers in the Harvard Business Review, July-August 2000, 98).

Therefore, critical issues of the management of the interface between the business development side of an organization and the information technology function will be highlighted.
The course provides a set of methods to describe, analyze and evaluate IT developments and their strategic impact such as business networks and e-commerce.


Course Format. The course relies on a balanced combination of lectures, lively group discussions, readings and collaborative case study work. Cases are used to support certain learning goals and critical thinking skills, for example:

  • How to plan the use of IT to enable a business strategy.

  • How to assess the use of IT in creating or destroying the competitive advantage of firms.

Typically, each session is composed of two sections: a lecture and a second part with group exercises and case discussions.

Course Objectives. At the conclusion of the course you should be able to:

  • Identify the strategic/economic potential of information technology (IT)

  • Draft an information systems (IS)-enabled business strategy

  • Provide a business case for an IS project

  • Know how to architect Internet-based transaction support systems such as an Internet retailing business.

Style and Policy. I prefer an open learning atmosphere. I encourage you to participate during the lectures if you have a question, wish to contribute or want to challenge what I am saying. Please do so without hesitation. If you have any suggestions or ideas, please bring them to me. If I do not hear from you, then I will assume that you are feeling comfortable with the course, content, direction, material and your own progress. The lines of communication on my part are always open. Please take advantage of my office hours or make an appointment with me.

Disability. Any student requesting academic accommodations based on a disability is required to register with Disability Services and Programs (DSP) each semester. A letter of verification for approved accommodations can be obtained from DSP. Please be sure the letter is delivered to me (or to my TA) as early in the semester as possible. DSP is located in STU 301 and is open 8:30 AM – 5 PM, Monday through Friday. The phone number for DSP is 213.740-0776.

Prerequisites. There are no course requirements. Basic knowledge of how to use a personal computer, and office and communication applications such as FTP is required. Familiarity with coding in HTML may be helpful but is not required. 
































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Copyright © 1999-2007 Dr. Chris Schlueter Langdon

Last modified: May 13, 2007