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The value of information concept applied to data systems

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  • Mathusz, Donald V
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    Cost-benefit analysis has a considerable literature in which information systems have been patently ignored. This reflects the considerable difficulties of applying the theory to information systems, and the state-of-the art remains relatively as Koopmans described it some 19 years ago (1957). A bar to further development would appear to be the lack of an applicable value-of-information concept. This paper seeks to clarify the issues and provide a robust theoretical and data analysis framework that will cover most situations. The approach here is to separate explicitly the dimensions of cost from those of information benefit, and examine the implications. The Null Information Benefit condition emerges as a special theoretical case, but potentially a most important one in applications. This case together with the Pareto optimum defines a large class of such problems that can be handled by the decision criteria and data analysis techniques tabulated and discussed here. The selection of input data techniques defines the limits of later project justification and may be crucial to the political viability of the projects throughout its life. Finally, the general management vs information systems management relationships are discussed in terms of this situation.

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    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Omega.

    Volume (Year): 5 (1977)
    Issue (Month): 5 ()
    Pages: 593-604

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:jomega:v:5:y:1977:i:5:p:593-604
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