Cooperation in inter-organisational networks usually requires considerable up-front investments in information technology (IT) specific for this cooperation. It is therefore of great importance that participants in a network select the partners for which it is most likely that cooperation will succeed. This requires a thorough understanding of the network from every perspective. This paper presents an approach to facilitate such understanding by using graphical snapshots of relevant properties of each participant, based on concrete, quantifiable data. The graphical snapshots provide a bird's eye view of the network that enables matching partners to form groups based on similarity. The approach has been applied in a case study that analysed e-customs, a large distributed system that connects the customs organisations of a number of member states of the European Union. The graphical snapshots obtained by applying our approach showed similarities and disparities between countries that indicate opportunities and challenges in IT integration. Results suggest that if in need of successful cooperation in groups within an inter-organisational network, our approach will help the architect to ask the right questions. We have validated our approach by showing the results to experts in the e-customs project, who confirmed our findings.
|Title of host publication||Proceedings of the International Association for Development of the Information Society (IADIS) International Conference e-Commerce 2007|
|Editors||Sandeep Krishnamurthy, Pedro Isaías|
|Number of pages||12|
|Publication status||Published - Dec 2007|