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Dan Power

Greetings to all of my friends who work in the area of computerized decision support. This blog is a way for me to share stories from my encounters related to decision support, to comment on industry events, and to comment on other blogger's comments, especially those of my friends on the Business Intelligence Network. I'll try to state my opinions clearly and provide an old professor's perspective on how computers and information technology are changing the world. Decision making has always been my focus, and it will be in this blog as well. Your comments, feedback and questions are welcomed.

About the author >

Daniel J. "Dan" Power is a Professor of Information Systems and Management at the College of Business Administration at the University of Northern Iowa and the editor of DSSResources.com, the Web-based knowledge repository about computerized systems that support decision making; the editor of PlanningSkills.com; and the editor of DSS News, a bi-weekly e-newsletter. Dr. Power's research interests include the design and development of decision support systems and how these systems impact individual and organizational decision behavior.

Editor's Note: More articles and resources are available in Dan's BeyeNETWORK Expert Channel. Be sure to visit today!

January 2009 Archives

International Conference on DSS, San Francisco, California USA, August 5-6, 2009, papers, panels due March 1, 2009.

DSS 1979 - 2009 - 2039: Reflecting on Yesterday, Assessing Today, Envisioning Tomorrow (http://cob.fsu.edu/mis/icdss/) is the theme of the upcoming International Conference on Decision Support Systems (ICDSS 2009).

The theme of this two day International Conference is to reflect on the past thirty years of DSS activity, assess the current best practices in teaching and research, and envision the next thirty years of it. Concurrently, we will recognize the twentieth anniversary of the founding of the International Society for Decision Support Systems (ISDSS). The conference will be held on August 5-6, 2009, the days prior to the Americas Conference on Information Systems (August 6-9), at the same conference venue (San Francisco Marriott).

The conference will consist of three segments. The first, Reflecting on Yesterday, will examine the rich history of DSS research and teaching by drawing on contributions from the field's luminaries. Contributions from pioneering DSS researchers and teachers have been solicited. Their responses will be synthesized by the program committee into an overview of the DSS field that outlines the accomplishments made and the challenges that exist.

The second segment, Assessing Today, and the third segment, Envisioning Tomorrow, will consist of presentations based on papers submitted in each category. A number of presentations will be scheduled from industry-based thought leaders regarding the application of new approaches to support future decision making environments.

Important Dates

Submissions Due: March 1, 2009 (send to paradice@fsu.edu)

Acceptances Notified: April 30, 2009

Camera Ready Papers Due: July 1, 2009; the Conference book will be published by Springer in the Annals of Information Systems series.

Conference: August 5 & 6, 2009

Program Committee

Frada Burstein, Monash University, Australia

David Paradice, Florida State University, USA

Dan Power, University of Northern Iowa, USA

Ramesh Sharda, Oklahoma State University, USA

check http://dssresources.com/news/2724.php

Americas Conference on Information Systems: http://amcis2009.sfsu.edu/ & http://amcis2009.aisnet.org/

Technorati Tags: International Conference on DSS 2009, Business Intelligence, Decision Support .

Posted January 14, 2009 4:15 PM
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Nancy Killefer, a partner at management consulting firm McKinsey and Co. and former Treasury official in the Clinton Administration, was named Chief Performance Officer to cut waste by President-elect Obama on Thursday, January 8, 2009.

It seems reasonable that a Chief Performance Officer with a management background should identify "key performance indicators" or KPIs based upon Obama's goals. So what should the KPIs be?

1) Net job creation. Obama promises to create 3 million jobs in the next 18 months or so. What is the gain in jobs versus loss of jobs? Obama wants most new jobs in the private sector so a measure of the sector of jobs that are created and average wage of new jobs.

2) Health costs. Obama wants to control rising health care costs. There should be health care cost indexes perhaps on a regional basis that can be used.

3) Health insurance coverage. Obama wants to have everyone in the US covered by some type of health insurance, but he wants a mix of insurance sources. Perhaps measure the % insured or the % uninsured.

4) Price stability index. Obama wants to stimulate the economy and avoid inflation. Perhaps some easily understandable measures like the average price of a gallon of milk by region or a market basket of groceries.

5) Number of foreclosures. Obama wants to get out of the current subprime mortgage crisis and keep people in their homes if possible. Some people paid too much and others falsified loan documents, some people have lost jobs. Perhaps a measure of loans adjusted by lenders or average housing price index is a better metric for Obama's policy goals.

6) Balance of Payments. More goods are imported than exported. Obama wants the US to be globally competitive and have a positive balance of payments. He certainly doesn't want to use tariffs or falling real wages to accomplish this goal. The hope is that increased productivity, innovation and entrepreneurship will lead to increased competitiveness. So perhaps monitor the cateogries of the trade deficit and monitor incentives for increased productivity like spending on new plant, technology and equipment.

7) Fossil fuel consumption. Obama wants to encourage creation of a "green" economony. Monitoring average fuel economy of vehicles, percent of energy from alternative sources like wind and solar, and investment in energy efficiency like better insulation would also help policy makers.

8) Government's cost per person. What is the average cost of operating government for each person in the US. Ideally if we are reducing waste, the cost of government per person should go down. This should be a measure of the "administrative overhead" for government programs.

Ideally about 7 to 8 policy oriented KPIs is all we want and we need specific targets in each area, both short run and long run, and investments and plans to impact the KPIs.

Setting KPIs for Obama is a difficult task. We shall see if Obama, Killefer and the bureaucrats in Washington can figure out performance monitoring.

Technorati Tags: Killefer & Obama, KPI Government, Business Intelligence, Decision Support .

Posted January 10, 2009 9:00 AM
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Today is my first work day after New Year's day so I will indulge in the practice of making resolutions. New Year's resolutions are typically efforts to improve, correct weakness, do better in the New Year. So what are my 2009 resolutions?

1) maintain better contact with my colleagues. I will try to use Linkedin more effectively. Please network with me and read my profile at www.linkedin.com/in/danpower .

2) improve my SQL skills. I still get trauma with nested sub queries, correlated queries, and outer joins. I try to keep my SQL simple, but I need to practice.

3) write more and get more feedback from people actually working with IS/T on my ideas. My newsletter reaches many practitioners of the arcane art of decision support, but I will try to request more formal reviewers. Please send me feedback.

4) travel first class or travel less. My trip to Paris a few weeks ago was a success on many levels, the presentation was well received and I had some great social encounters. Sadly travel is tiring and my legs don't do well cramped in a seat. So quality over quantity in my travels in 2009.

5) say thank you to all my readers, family, colleagues and friends with the beyeNETWORK. My wife Carol is the unsung hero in keeping our household and the family business going. So thanks Carol.

6) get a smart phone with a data plan. My two oldest sons both have smart phones, Alex, a G phone, and Ben, a Blackberry Storm. I don't think I am ready for texting and I don't have extensive travel to justify the cost, but I want one of these devices as a "toy". I have seen the Apple iPhone in action too. Which will I get? I want the G phone because of the keyboard and the open development environment. Sadly, I don't have T-Mobile in my area and I have a contract with Verizon. Ah ... the barriers to entry.

7) drink some good scotch. Again I'll focus on quality over quantity. My single malt scotch collection is expanding. A bottle of Lagavulin is my next purchase. I sampled some a few weeks ago. According to Wikipedia "Lagavulin Single Malt is a single malt Scotch whisky produced on the island of Islay. It has a powerful, peat-smoke aroma. It is described as being robustly full-bodied, well balanced, and smooth, with a slight sweetness on the palate."

Technorati Tags: New Year's Resolutions, Business Intelligence, Decision Support .

Posted January 2, 2009 6:16 AM
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