Ralph H. Sprague, Jr.

of Information Technology Management
College of Business Administration

University of Hawai'i at Manoa

Office Phone Number: (808) 956-7082

Ph.D., Indiana University, Quantitative Business Analysis
IS95.01, IS95.03, O-11, O-16
Decision support systems: design, structure, usage, etc.. Electronic document management. Management of information systems.

Biographical Sketch

Ralph Sprague is Professor of Information Technology Management in the College of Business Administration at the University of Hawaii. He has over 30 years of experience in teaching, research, and consulting in the use of computers and information technologies in organizations. His specialties are Decision Support Systems, Strategic Systems Planning, the Management of Information Systems, and Electronic Document Management.

He has published dozens of articles and books on these topics. His framework article on Decision Support Systems was one of the 25 most cited works in the Information Systems field in the 1980s. A citation analysis during that time showed that he was one of the ten most influential authors in the field of Management Information Systems. His book on DSS, co-authored with Eric Carlson, has been translated into Japanese and Portugese. His book on Information Systems Management with Barbara McNurlin, currently in seventh edition, is a leading text on that subject, and has been translated into Chinese.

He has consulted and lectured extensively in the United States, Europe, Middle East, Australia, Asia, and South Africa. Consulting clients include Xerox, Apple, IBM, Coca-Cola of Australia, Fujitsu, Bank of America, the Governments of Egypt and Israel, and many others.

He is the founder and Chairman (for the first ten years), of the Department of Decision Sciences at the University of Hawaii. This department was rated the top department in the United States in the field of Decision Support Systems. He is also the founder and former Director of the Pacific Research Institute for Information Systems and Management (PRIISM), an institute to investigate the primary issues in Information Technology in the Asia/Pacific Region He has also held academic positions at Anderson College, University of Maryland, University of Colorado, City Universty of Hong Kong, University of Freiburg, and Stanford University.

He spent a year as Visiting Research Fellow at the Institute for the Future, in Menlo Park. California, while on sabbatical leave from the University. In this capacity, he worked with several firms on Strategic Systems Planning and the development of Electronic Document Management Systems. He serves on the Xerox Executive Advisory Forum, a group of Chief Information Officers to interact with Xerox in the development of document systems. More recently, he spent a year at Xerox PARC working on projects in knowledge management and knowledge sharing, and document mining.

He has served as Chairman or Co-chairman of the Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS) for the past 30 years. HICSS has become one of the top international conferences on computers and systems. It is unique in combining computer science and organizational information systems in a high level interdisciplinary conference. HICSS papers are regularly published in special issues of reputable journals and in the Information Systems Book Series published by the IEEE Computer Society Press.

Current Projects:

Electronic Document Management

Harnessing information technology to manage documents is one of the most important challenges facing I/S managers in this decade. It is important because most of the valuable information in organizations is in the forms of documents such as business forms, reports, letters, memos, policy statements, contracts, agreements, etc. Moreover, most of the important business processes in organizations are based on, or driven by, document flows. Electronic Document Management (EDM) promises major productivity and performance increases by applying new technology to documents and document processing.
The potential value of applying technology to document management is significant. Because documents contain concepts and ideas, EDM promises enhanced support and improved productivity for managers and professionals who deal primarily with concepts and ideas. And because documents are the primary vehicle for business processes, EDM promises to make a major contribution to process redesign and improvement efforts.
The purposes of this project are to show the value of new technology for managing documents, to illustrate the variety of ways this value can be realized, to develop some structure for understanding this rapidly evolving field, and to suggest some actions I/S managers can take now to prepare for this revolution in information management.

Click here to see the article entitled "Electronic Document Management: Challenges and Opportunities for Information Systems Managers" from the March 1995 issue of the MIS Quarterly.

Click here to see the article entitled "The Electronic Document: A New Frontier for Corporate IS" from the June 1997 issue of I.S. Business Partners. This is a .pdf file, click Adobe Acrobat Reader to download this plug-in; as necessary.

Click here to see the Keynote Address from the September 1998 Australian Conference on Information Systems

Class Materials:

Bus 630 Class schedule for Fall 2009


ITM 366 Class Schedule for Fall 2009

2404 Maile Way, Honolulu, HI 96744
Phone: (808) 956-7082 Fax: (808) 956-9889