Chapter 1Bridging the Digital Divide

The world of business is changing more broadly, deeply, and rapidly than ever before. As the global marketplace has been flattened by the Internet, the leading industrialized nations are being challenged by the developing economies led by the BRIC countries of Brazil, Russia, India, and China. Today there is no company that is big enough, strong enough, rich enough, or smart enough to lead any market without partners.

As a result of this tectonic shift in their competitive space, market leaders have digitized their business relationships with trading partners to keep up with their ever-changing world in the increasing pace of Internet time. In this manner, these customer-centric digital businesses, which vary in size and scale, product type, as well as market reach, have created digital value chains as virtual enterprises with compatible core competencies in order to compete in their business ecosystems. The foundation of these thoughts has been long established. Marshall McLuhan observed when writing his 1967 classic The Medium Is the Message that “Any technology gradually creates a totally new human environment.”

Business Agility Concepts

Business agility is defined here as innovation via collaboration to be able to anticipate challenges and opportunities before they occur. Accordingly, a gap analysis methodology can be used to evaluate the business agility readiness (BAR) needed to implement successfully an information management system ...

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