Update: Travel, reading and other news from the Department of Information Systems

It’s August, and the students and faculty in the Department of Information Systems are getting ready for the fall semester.


Getting into a fall semester mindset

The transition from summer vacation and internships to classes and study is a mental as well as a geographic shift. To help students with the change in mindset, KnowIT asked a handful of professors and doctoral students what books they would recommend to students. We received a list of interesting titles, including many that would refresh and inspire professionals on the job as well as returning students. Here they are for your browsing pleasure:

“A College Student’s Guide to Time Management – A Book By and For College Students” by Edward Rippen. The author is a college student and business owner who “ learned the hard way how vital time management really is.”

“Antifragile: Things That Gain from Disorder” by Nassim Nicholas Taleb. By the author of “The Black Swan,” this book argues that uncertainty is desirable: if the resilient is capable of enduring shock, the antifragile absorbs shock and becomes better.

“The Glass Cage: Automation and Us” by Nicholas Carr. Wearable computers, self-driving cars, factory robots: software is impacting our work and leisure in ways that were the stuff of science fiction not so long ago. But what does it all mean for our humanity? Delving into history and philosophy as well as poetry and science, Carr challenges us to think.

“How to Fly a Horse: The Secret History of Creation, Invention, and Discovery” by Kevin Ashton. The author, an MIT technology pioneer and entrepreneur, goes back over history’s great inventions to learn who creates and how they do it.

“IT Doesn’t Matter” by Nicholas Carr. This 2003 Harvard Business Review article caused a huge controversy when it came out, but remains relevant and provides a starting place for students to think about their roles as IT professionals.

“Shop Class as Soulcraft: An Inquiry into the Value of Work” by Matthew B. Crawford. This bestseller revisits the merits of skilled manual labor. As our students prepare to be ‘knowledge workers,’ here’s an opportunity to think about the nature of work itself and “how we can live concretely in an ever more abstract world.”

“This Idea Must Die: Scientific Theories That Are Blocking Progress” by John Brockman. Brockman publishes edge.org, which invites leading thinkers to consider challenging questions. This book captures their answers to the question, what scientific idea needs to be put aside to make room for news ideas to bloom.


Fall Information Systems and Business Analytics Career Mixer coming up

It’s time for companies interested in recruiting information systems and business analytics students to make plans for the annual fall mixer: September 28 from 4:30 to 7 p.m. This is a free career networking event where students and firms get to know each other and discuss internship or career opportunities. If you have any questions about the Fall 2015 Information Systems and Business Analytics Career Mixer please contact wpcareyis@asu.edu.


Where in the world is Professor Vinze?

These days, Professor Ajay Vinze might be found in the department offices in BA or in the provost’s suite at graduate education, the building across Cady Mall known as Interdisciplinary. That’s because in addition to his role as a professor of information systems, he is also the W. P. Carey School’s associate dean for international programs and ASU’s associate vice provost for graduate education. In his associate dean role, Vinze has been travelling the world meeting with researchers and leaders of educational institutions, seeking to develop partnerships to help extend the global footprint for W. P. Carey School of Business and for ASU.

He emphasizes partnership when he explains his job. It is a two-way stream, Vinze explains, partnerships allow innovative options for students from other countries to take classes through W. P. Carey, while simultaneously creating opportunities for our faculty and students to engage with these international institutions. A true win-win situation!

He has visited every continent except Antarctica, though he paused at that thought and remarked that there is a lot of interesting research there. In the next month he will travel to India to think about a strategy for engaging with that country, then after touching down in Arizona, will fly off to Chile, where he will attend CLADEA (the Council of Learning Assistance and Developmental Education Associations) where he co-chairs the doctoral consortium for Latin American business schools. Vinze will also meet with EQUAA (Education Quality Accreditation Agency) officials and fellow board members. EQUAA is a new organization that is developing accreditation standards and systems for Latin American schools.

At KnowIT we were intrigued with Vinze’s global itinerary, so periodically we’ll share postcards from his travels. To start, here’s a selection from recent journeys:

Meeting with Director General Naji Mohamed Al-Mutairi of KISR (Kuwait institute for Scientific Research — similar to the National Science Foundation) to explore possibilities for ASU
Best option after a long day of meetings – enjoying the famous Harbin “Ma dieer” ice cream with Qiang Ye, Dean of Harbin Institute of Technology – School of Business
Best option after a long day of meetings — enjoying the famous Harbin “Ma Dieer” ice cream with Qiang Ye, dean of the School of Management – Harbin Institute of Technology
Visiting the University of Ghana Business School with WPC colleague and Supply Chain Management Professor Adegoke Oke
No visit to Peru is complete without enjoying Ceviche where the locals do, at El Estadio,with Carlos, a friend and colleague from Universidad ESAN