From different angles to solve the puzzle: Macroeconomic and microeconomic analyses of information technology productivity
AuthorShu, Wesley Szu-Way
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractThis dissertation addresses one of the most academically intriguing issues in MIS, so-called "IT productivity paradox" which describes the failure of detecting positive contribution in productivity statistics by Information Technology investment while our economy has voraciously and restlessly spent money on them for the last few decades. Recent studies are showing startling contrast with the previous ones and there seems big discrepancy between firm level and national economy analyses. In order to unravel the paradox and the discrepancy observed. The author provides theoretical and methodological discussion and the empirical investigation on the methodologies used by previous research and conducted both firm-level and macro-economic analysis. The background investigation above shows that the recent studies defying the decades-old IT paradox do not pass rigorous methodological test based microeconomic production theories. The firm level analysis confirms our conjectures that the highly positive contributions reported by the recent studies are not reliable and thus shall not be read without caution. Our claim is supplemented by simulation studies as well. In addition to the microeconomic analysis, macroeconomic level study on major developed countries has been conducted. An emphasis is placed at the impact of information technology on the structural change of employment, and at the impact of the structural change on productivity. The potential contribution of this dissertation includes: (i) Using the same data set the prior studies used, we contrasts findings and methodologies with those in the previous studies. It calls for very careful attention to the methodology before we applaud for "positive" findings. (ii) It also provides a rare study in MIS on economic value of IT investment in macroeconomics and international contexts.
Degree ProgramGraduate College