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Call For Papers - Integrating Information and Knowledge Work in Outsourced, Offshored, and Other Distributed Business Networks

Call for Papers
Special Issue of Production and Operations Management on:

Integrating Information and Knowledge Work
in Outsourced, Offshored, and Other Distributed Business Networks

Guest Editors: Edward G. Anderson Jr. & Geoffrey G. Parker

Description: The use of distributed organizational arrangements (e.g. supply chains, outsourcing, offshoring, mergers and acquisitions, and alliances) involving multiple entities that are separated by ownership, geographic, or other organizational boundaries to implement business processes has spread dramatically in recent years. In the past, such outsourcing arrangements were confined primarily to peripheral activities, such as payroll management, benefits administration, and janitorial services. Today, however, these outsourcing arrangements are increasingly used to execute more core information- and knowledge-intensive activities, such as information systems development and administration, innovation and the creation of intellectual property in general, contract manufacturing and engineering, and other professional or knowledge services. Some of these arrangements remain centralized with a clear focal organization and its subsidiary suppliers. Other arrangements, such as open-source networks, are decentralized. Hybrid arrangements are also observed, as the recent open contest to develop new recommendation algorithms for Netflix demonstrates. The extensive use of multi-organizational arrangements to execute highly-integrated knowledge work is a relatively new phenomenon. Prior management theories, such as transaction cost economics, information processing, and organizational search, need to be extended to describe the operational realities posed by organizational forms that are neither markets nor hierarchies. Because the effectiveness of the coordination, management, and integration of the new organizations is still poorly understood, there is a need for a rigorous program of study.

The special issue on Integrating Information and Knowledge Work in Outsourced, Offshored, and Other Distributed Business Networks seeks manuscripts that describe or prescribe how new multi-organizational arrangements are integrated across time and space to provide coherent business processes. Papers may employ a range of research methods including, but not limited to, case studies, econometric or empirical analysis, analytic modeling, and simulation. All manuscripts should contain original research and conform to Production and Operations Management’s guidelines for authors.

Appropriate topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Challenges to integration and coordination of organizational efforts resulting from outsourcing, offshoring, or other distributed development networks
  • How information systems (e.g. web conferencing, e-portals, exchanges, and other distributed collaboration tools) facilitate distributed development networks
  • Organizational solutions to the integration problem such as the use of specialized personnel or third-party organizations such as boundary spanners, supply chain integrators, supply chain orchestrators, etc.
  • The impact and limits of modularity and standards in enabling coordination
  • Integration of open-source, contest, or other “federated” information and knowledge work into distributed business development networks
  • Comparisons of the structure, effectiveness, and capability of integration in distributed development environments with more traditional vertically integrated organizations

Review Process: Submitted articles will be reviewed by the guest editors, senior editors, and referees. Decisions regarding acceptance of articles will be made within two review cycles, where each review cycle will be within four months.

Deadline for submission: Please prepare an electronic copy of the article in PDF format that conforms to the POM format ( and submit the file to the email address below by June 30, 2010. Submissions should be addressed to “POM Special Issue Editor” and should be emailed to:
Professor Geoffrey G. Parker
Tulane Energy Institute
A. B. Freeman School of Business
Tulane University
New Orleans, LA 70118

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