e-Business Workshop

RFID – an e-Business Workshop Debate

Posted on July 18th, 2009 by admin in RFID

Many manufacturers, retailers and other services have invested in RFID applications, but the return on those investments is still unclear. The business value of RFID is beginning to surface but it is an emerging story. We need effective measurement  so we can better understand the business value of embedded ITs like RFID.

There is a need to assess RFID’s impacts and to establish what may prevent companies from achieving acceptable returns on this technology investment.

Observation and data collection of notable RFID leaders in retailing, including Wal-Mart and Metro Group, has revealed some information but nothing conclusive, some pilot tests, few provable operational initiatives, and some interesting differences between European and U.S. companies’ efforts.

Many factors may be slowing the pace of the implementation of RFID beyond the pallet level, including privacy concerns, slower-than-expected declines in RFID tag prices, debates on setting standards, and problems in developing enhanced business processes.

There are other issues in establishing the parameters of RFID  – is it identifiable as a new technology? Could it also be evaluated as just another B2B technology such as EDI? Must we examine this B2B technology in the context of existing theories? They might include issues as innovation diffusion and knowledge transfer, establishing process-based value, issues around incomplete contracts and joint ventures across firm boundaries, or the ownership of  information.

A discussion on existing published RFID studies, as well as some of the trade-press reports to provide a report card on the extent of business value attained from RFID is due.  Addressing some of the discussions around this seemingly neutral technology for example, is the e-business value is needed. It is unclear where the value lies – at the pallet level, the box level or the item level.

We want to explore which players are ahead of the pack in the RFID race Where are the geographical leaders – are Europeans, Asians or Americans farther along in their exploration of RFID value? Privacy problems need to be addressed and standards designed.

Governance issues, such as those that are Internet based on data and people gives way to what the United Nations and the International Telecommunications Union have called the ‘Internet of  Things’ is likely to have significant impact on this field.

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Guidelines for e-Business Workshops

Posted on June 17th, 2009 by admin in Guidelines

Structures of e-business workshops are as varied as the topics. The approach of successful workshops has developed into a wide range of formats. The key is that the format should fit the subject selected and audience.

Academic symposia are normally formally chaired events with calls for research papers and selection of speakers made some months in advance. The normal proceedings usually include one or several panel discussions as well as presentation of parers around the main themes and selected topics.

Smaller parallel sessions, often of a more interactive format, allow delegates to select areas of particular interest and to network more closely with colleagues and delegates from other institutions.

Business based e-business workshops may follow a similar format and level of formality and structure, whether on conference scale or down to small-scale seminars. They can also be run as training events, concentrating on particular techniques or strategies.

We will be developing guidelines for individual types of event management and reporting on examples of effective e-business workshops.

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Panel Discussions

Posted on June 17th, 2009 by admin in Panel

Setting up a Panel Discussion

Panel discussions need effective facilitation to allow each speaker a similar amount of ‘air time’ and to ensure speakers keep to the subject rather than simply promoting themselves or speaking off topic.

Timing should be adhered to. It is a subtle skill to allow speakers time to make their point, but move the discussion along within a set time frame. Questions often need to be seeded in advance, so audience participation in ensures, but the chair/facilitator should be prepared to add topics and questions of their own.

The chair also needs to be observant in identifying questioners with an effective system set up of roving microphones. Questioners must be managed so their questions are succinct and on topic and as with the panel, are not simply vehicles for self- promotion or descend into a rant. Subtle skills in managing awkward questions is another important element.

For panel speakers,an obvious requirement is that they are articulate and quick thinkers, knowledgeable about the subject and good at responding to whatever comes up.

Selecting panel speakers requires tact and recognition of how to choose complementary speakers so there is a spectrum of approach which should lead to more stimulating and informative debate.

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