Lunch Seminar: Ramayya Krishnan, On the Interaction Between Network Structure and Query Content in an Enterprise-wide Technical Forum

Speaker: 
Professor Ramayya Krishnan, Carnegie Mellon University
Special Lecture
Monday, May 5, 2008, 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
107 South Hall

We take a social network approach to study query response behavior of employees in an enterprise-wide “technical forum”. Questions posed by employees on the web-based forum result in responses from other employees with the responses organized as threads. Prior work that has adopted a social network approach has traditionally focused on homophily-related variables such as location, group, age and gender to explain query response behavior. There is also large inter-disciplinary literature that attempts to explain response behavior using economic and sociological theories. We contribute to the literature by examining the role that network structures (e.g., Simmelian ties) established between employees in the query responding and thread co-participation contexts play in explaining query response behavior at the dyadic level. Further, we develop methods to understand the nature of the interaction between query features and the network structures that arise between employees in the context of query answering. Specifically, we develop methods to adapt two query attributes – the information content of the query terms and the subject popularity of the documents retrieved in response to a query – derived from the information retrieval literature to our context. Using a unique data set consisting of over 20,000 queries and over 45,0000 responses contributed by 2500 employees covering activity across a time period of one year (Aug 2006 – Aug 2007), we use QAP-based multiple regression to investigate how query-attributes and network structure interact to explain query response behavior. We discuss the managerial implications of our study from both knowledge management as well as IT design perspectives.

Pizza will be provided for lunch; please RSVP to John Chuang, so that we can get a headcount for ordering.

Bio: 

Ramayya Krishnan is the W. W. Cooper and Ruth F. Cooper Professor of Information Systems at Carnegie Mellon University. He has a B. Tech in Mechanical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, a M.S. in Industrial Engineering and Operations Research and a PhD in Management Science and Information Systems from the University of Texas at Austin. He is an International Research Fellow of the International Center for Electronic Commerce in Korea and a Visiting Scientist at the Institute for Information Systems at Humboldt University (Germany). He is faculty chair of the university’s Masters of Information Systems Management program.

Krishnan’s current teaching interests lie at the interface of technology, business and policy aspects of internet-enabled systems. He teaches courses on e-business, telecommunications management and a capstone course – digital transformation – that integrates technology and organizations aspects of technology implementation. He is the recipient of the General Motors (GM) Technical Education Program Outstanding Distance Learning Faculty Award, which honors a professor for demonstrating excellence in distance learning education. He is also the 2005 recipient of the Teaching Award for Heinz School's IT programs. He teaches in numerous executive education programs and is an expert on the use of IT to both create and capture value for organizations.

His current research projects investigate risk management in business process design and in information security, grid economics, and the design of policies that take into account the competing needs of promoting data access and protecting privacy. He has published widely on these topics and his work received the Best Paper awards at the HICSS conference (1997), the Workshop on Information Technology and Systems (1996, 2000) and the AIS conference (2001) and was a runner up at ICIS (2002). His work has been funded over the last decade by the National Science Foundation, The Army Research Office, and DARPA.

He is presently the co-Department Editor for Information Systems at Management Science. His editorial experience includes his work as co-area editor for Telecommunications and Electronic Commerce at the INFORMS Journal on Computing, as an Associate Editor for Management Science, as an Associate Editor for Operations Research, and as an Associate Editor for Information Systems Research. He co-edited a special issue of Interfaces on e-business and co-edited two special issue volumes of Management Science on E-business. He is the incoming president of the INFORMS Information Systems Society and a past president of the INFORMS Computing Society.