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Dieter Fink

School of Management

My research journey

I entered academia after a professional career in Information Technology (IT) consulting with Arthur Young & Co (now Ernst & Young).

During my first few years at ECU, i was heavily focussed on teaching. However, I soon developed the desire to explore how the theory I was teaching applied to practice. As such, my research combines the practical experiences I had gained in the business world with the theoretical knowledge of the business discipline itself.

Over the years I completed many research projects which, on reflection, can be grouped under the heading of IT governance. This is defined as generating value through the innovative exploitation of IT and effective information and knowledge management. The responsibility to maximise the returns on these activities lies with the executive level in the form of corporate governance.

Some interesting projects that I have recently been involved with are establishing the theory-practice gap in IT governance of large WA organisations; attitudes to transferring knowledge to colleagues in an organisation that is highly competitive; and a comparison of the way German and Australian SMEs infused IT into their business practices.

My current research is focussed on providing insights to government into the potential of web 2.0 as a mechanism to engage with the public on issues concerning road safety. A survey carried out for the WA Office of Road Safety found reasonably high levels of abilities with web 2.0 tools as well as expectations for Road Safety 2.0 applications, thus encouraging government to pursue the potential of web 2.0.

Furthermore, I attempt to develop teaching strategies that impart wisdom-related knowledge during case-based learning through research into teaching practice. Ever increasing industrialisation and the emergence of potentially damaging forces, such as pollution, have started to raise our consciousness to the need to develop a ‘wiser’ society that would be capable of dealing with the changing landscape. Students, when solving a case study, are encouraged to apply wisdom-related knowledge which is operationalised as factual knowledge, procedural knowledge, contextualisation, relativism, and uncertainty.

Details of my research are available on the Community of Sciences website.

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