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Track04: Cloud Computing and Services in Global Settings

Track Chairs

Jan M. Pawlowski, University of Jyväskylä, Finland,
Inge van de Weerd, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, The Netherlands,
Alexander Benlian, TU Darmstadt, Germany,


More and more companies use cloud computing solutions for their business applications and its impact is indisputable. Several predictions indicate that cloud computing will grow in the following years: IDC predicts that by 2013 10% of all IT purchases will be cloud computing related; Gartner predicts that in end of 2016, more than 50% of Global 1000 companies will have stored customer-sensitive data in the public cloud; and KPMG reports that 81% of all businesses are either planning, starting or already working with cloud computing implementations. Although the estimates differ, the main trend is undeniable: the use of cloud computing solutions is quickly gaining ground.

The shift towards the cloud has enormous impact on how companies utilize software. We can make an analogy with electricity here: in the nineteenth century, factories had to build their own dedicated power generator capabilities in order to get their machines running. Nowadays, many firms have to make large up-front investments for their IT applications and infrastructure. Just as electricity utilities removed the entry barriers for industries, cloud computing removes entry barriers for companies that use IT. Computing is now offered as utility.

Despite many advantages of cloud computing, such as low entry barriers, more scalability, faster implementation times and more business agility, there are also challenges, such as managing organizational change, adapting (IT) governance processes, trusting third parties with secure data, making strategic sourcing decisions, and dealing with new pricing and licensing models.

As a specific focus, we address globalization and internationalization aspects: cloud computing, service-oriented architectures and corresponding concepts are by nature distributed and in most cases global. The research focus of these concepts has primarily been on technology solutions. However, the organizational and human aspects, especially with regard global challenges to these technologies, are more and more explored. Outsourcing and offshoring solutions have been discussed frequently, in both research and in industry. As more and more organizations apply outsourcing and offshoring practices, new ways have to be found to compete in this rapidly changing environment. Key topics in this field are the organization of offshore processes, work and support of global (virtual) teams as well as specific aspects such as trust, or coordination across time zones.

To be successful in a global service infrastructure from a human perspective, stakeholders need to be enabled to successfully deploy and adapt services as well as coordinate and communicate with related organizations on a global level. This includes new key competencies for individuals and organizations, such as intercultural management / communication. Moreover, organizations and individuals need support to acquire and continuously enhance those skills. Furthermore, other technological innovations, cultural awareness and competencies are key success factors for the future.

This track wishes to explore these challenges and other issues relating to the adoption and use of cloud computing solutions in organizations, and its influence on process organization and design. The scope includes Software as a Service (SaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), as well as Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) solutions.

Topics of interest

Potential topics include, but are not limited, to:
  • Cloud computing adoption, diffusion and implementation
  • Business impact of changing to cloud solutions
  • Cloud computing and organizational change
  • Cloud computing, organizational learning and absorptive capacity
  • Consequences of cloud computing for the IT profession
  • Licensing, pricing, monitoring and billing in cloud computing
  • Cloud computing economics
  • Cloud sourcing, make or buy decision processes
  • Risks and benefits of using cloud computing
  • Trust, security and reliability in cloud computing
  • Audits and certification processes and standards in cloud computing
  • Changing IT usage patterns
  • Cloud computing and start-ups
  • Cloud computing and IT governance
  • Service visualization
  • Cloud federations, service marketplaces and ecosystems
  • Cloud computing in developing countries
  • Cloud computing and sustainability

Associate Editors

Erran Carmel, Ph.D., Kogod School of Business, American University, USA
Ole Hanseth, University of Oslo, Norway
Thomas Hess, LMU Munich, Germany
Slinger Jansen, Utrecht University, The Netherlands
Marios Koufaris, Zicklin School of Business of Baruch College, CUNY, USA
Karl Lang, Zicklin School of Business of Baruch College, CUNY, USA
Karl Michael Popp, SAP, Germany
Nabil Sultan, Liverpool Hope University, United Kingdom
Ryad Titah, HEC Montréal, Canada
Pasi Tyrväinen, University of Jyväskylä, Finland
Thomas Widjaja, Technical University of Darmstadt, Germany