THE ABSORPTION OF COMPUTERIZED MANAGEMENT INFORMATION SYSTEMS IN SOVIET ENTERPRISES (HARDWARE, SOFTWARE, SOCIAL IMPACT).
AuthorMCHENRY, WILLIAM KEITH.
KeywordsComputers -- Soviet Union.
Electronic data processing -- Soviet Union.
Management information systems.
Information storage and retrieval systems.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractSince the mid-1960s, the Communist Party and government of the Soviet Union have allocated substantial resources for introducing computers into industrial enterprises. This dissertation assesses the results of this program by addressing three fundamental questions: (1) To what extent have computerized management information systems been absorbed into Soviet enterprises? (2) What has facilitated or hindered absorption? (3) What is the long-range potential for computerized enterprise management information systems (ASUPs)? Although computing has had a revolutionary impact on the way that business is done in the United States, no such effect has been obtained in the USSR. Mainframes have been installed in a relatively small number of large Soviet enterprises, but computing has failed to become an integral part of management with the exception of some routine accounting and planning applications. A handful of time-sharing centers provide computing services for other enterprises. At the superstructure level, which comprises primarily those organizations positioned above the enterprise, the Soviet enterprise is subject to conflicting or misdirected incentives and a great deal of bureaucratic interference. ASUPs have been constrained because informal, marginal, or illegal procedures and relationships necessary to manage Soviet enterprises are not amenable to computerization; the payoff from computing is small, while the risk is great; and other parts of the system have failed to adapt to it. At the infrastructure level, which provides computing services to enterprises, the overall quality of hardware, software, and systems design has been poor. Even within the constraints on applicable usage, ASUPs have failed to live up to their potential. The focus of the Soviet computing effort is shifting away from enterprise management into other areas which are somewhat more isloated from the surrounding system: process control, robotics, and computer-aided design and manufacturing. Further efforts within the ASUP program are being directed towards time-sharing centers to provide services to smaller enterprises and national standards for accounting applications. The incremental absorption of management applications will continue, but without major systemic changes, its impact will remain marginal.
Degree ProgramManagement Information Systems