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The Global Social and Organizational Effects of New Information Technologies

This project will assess the global impact on social life and ways of doing business of a wide range of information technologies.

Professors Uday Karmarkar and Jeffrey Cole of the Anderson Graduate School of Management, and Professor Rajit Gadh of the Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. ($84,000 over three years)

The principal investigators suggest that the transformation effects of the computer revolution "could be comparable to those of the automobile on urban and suburban patterns or to the effects of the modern freight system on the structure of supply chains." The effects can be profound even in countries such as the former Soviet Union and in Africa despite the relatively few internet connections, because those who are connected are the elites who have a large impact on their societies.

This new project will build upon the work of three others: The UCLA Wireless Internet for Mobile Enterprise Consortium, which has been studying wireless technologies; The World Internet Project, which has been conducting a longitudinal survey of the effects of the internet in more than 20 countries; and the Business and Information Technology project, which has been studying the changes created in business practice by on-line technologies.

The PIs write in their proposal that one effect of the new technologies is to blur the boundary between home and work "in a way that makes it difficult to separate the study of individual and organizational behavior." New technologies have also stimulated much greater personal contact between individuals across national boundaries than was the case in traditional international economic exchange.

Their study will look at implications of the new technologies for security against terrorism and and transformations in governance as government agencies go online.

Project Report

UCLA World Internet Project Finds Gaps between Rich and Poor, Young and Old, Men and Women

UCLA International Institute