This volume of Information System Development, Towards a Service Provision Society is the published proceedings of the 17th International Conference on Information Systems Development (ISD2008) that was hosted by the Department of Computer Science of the University of Cyprus at the Annabelle Hotel, Paphos, Cyprus from August 25-27, 2008. The theme of the conference was "Towards a Service Provision Society."
In total, 131 delegates from 34 different countries registered for the conference, making it a truly international event. Papers presented at the conference strongly reflected the conference theme. Of 165 papers submitted, 99 were presented at the conference, representing an acceptance rate of approximately 60%. All papers were peer reviewed by three or four referees (a total of 543 review reports were submitted, corresponding to an average of 3.29 reviews per paper).
Over the course of three days, 28 paper sessions were held, covering a range of areas such as: "Information Systems Engineering & Management," "Business Systems Analysis & Design," "Intelligent Information Systems," "Agile and High-Speed Systems Development Methods," "Enterprise Systems Development & Adoption," "Public Information Systems Development," "Information Systems Development Education," "Information Systems Development in Developing Nations," "Legal and Administrative Aspects of Information Systems Development," "Information Systems Research Methodologies," "Service-Oriented Analysis and Design of Information Systems," "IT Service Management," "Philosophical and Theoretical Issues in Information Systems Development," "Model-driven Engineering in ISD," "Human Computer Interaction (HCI) in Information Systems Development." The book is organised by order of the conference sessions.
While all the presented papers were of high quality, we have selected two of them to share the Best Paper Award. The first one is: "Modeling the contribution of enterprise architecture practice to the achievement of business goals" by Marlies van Steenbergen & Sjaak Brinkkemper. The second one is: "Why cana (TM)t we bet on ISD Outcomes?: ISD "Form" as a Predictor of Success" by Mike Newman, Shan L Pan & Gary Pan. Furthermore, to acknowledge the quality of the reviews he completed, the quality of the paper he submitted, his role as a track and session chair, and his general participation in the conference, we have awarded an Ovreall Contribution Award to Michael Lang of the National University of Ireland, Galway. Details of these awards can be found on the conference Web site at http: //isd2008.cs.ucy.ac.cy.
Our gratitude is extended firstly to all those who attended and authored work for the conference. The contribution of the International Program Committee was invaluable in identifying track chairs and reviewers to commit to doing vital work. While volunteering to host a conference is a highly personal undertaking, without support it would be impossible. Thus, we wish to thank our sponsors for their financial support and other aid.
The ISD conference community has developed over the years a real sense of collegiality and friendliness, perhaps unusually so for a conference. At the same time it has been a stimulating forum where a free exchange of views and perspectives is encouraged. Perhaps what brings the community together is a belief that the process of systems development is important; whether it is systematic or structured or improvised or spontaneous, there is something about the process and the outcomes that excites us. We form a spectrum of thought from those who see the activity as somewhat scientific to others that see it as wholly sociological; we span a divide between abstract and conceptual, to hard code and artefacts a " somewhere in-between lies the truth. If our work is to make a meaningful contribution to both practice (by teaching students) and research (by sharing our experiences and studies with others), then hopefully this conference will have done a little of the former and much for the latter.
Recent European Commission studies recall the urgency of promoting new and more robust Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs), due to the rise of enormous global markets and the emergence of a new industrial system originating from the distinctly different business culture of the Far East. A "road map" for the survival of SMEs in Europe must be based on an accurate analysis of the most significant causes behind the weaknesses of SMEs. Several research projects conclude that SMEs must join together to create "networks". Yet the majority of the existing networks suffer from a lack of real coordination: it is clear that a method for analyzing the governance of the network and its collaboration efficiency is essential for assuring effective performance. "A Road Map to the Development of European SME Networks" addresses this task: describing the method of analysis, allowing comparisons to be made between SME networks in different European countries, and providing information on a supporting web site.
China accounts for around one-eighth of the world's grassland and almost all of its grasslands are being degraded. The authors analyse how China is grappling with the complex ecological and livelihood problems these pastoral areas present. The sustainable development of these extremely poor, culturally sensitive, strategically important and extremely diverse western pastoral areas poses one of the foremost challenges confronting the Chinese government. This much-needed study provides a unique examination of the intricate web of policies and institutions that now impact on grassland degradation and sustainable development in China's pastoral region.Understanding this complex matrix and its impact on the management of people, livestock, grasslands, markets and industry structures is crucial in charting a way forward. The authors argue that the aim should be to manage these inter-locking complex systems in a manner that takes advantage of the opportunities that technology present to achieve sustainable use of the grasslands. Whilst their analysis is especially relevant to how China pursues the high priority national goal of 'Developing the West', it also reveals much about how China addresses other serious environmental problems that involve disadvantaged groups.With its multi-disciplinary approach, the book will be invaluable and fascinating reading for academics and researchers of Chinese studies, development studies, ecosystem sustainability and natural resource management. Based on extensive first-hand fieldwork in the grasslands over two decades, the practical detail in this book will also be warmly welcomed by consultants and officials in NGOs and other international agencies charged with planning and executing pastoral development projects in China, Central Asia and Mongolia.
February 14th 1993. Sheffield United fans remember it as the day their team won a famous victory against Manchester United. The date is lodged in Anna Young's brain for a different reason. That was the day her thirteen-year-old sister, Jessica, was abducted... Fast forward twenty years. The case has long since gone cold. But Anna won't let it die. She made a promise to look after her little sister. And it's a promise she intends to keep no matter how long it takes... A detective with one thing on his mind.
"Place, Migration and Development in the Third World" provides a fresh examination of the nature of Third World development. Lawrence Brown focuses on the characteristics of particular places and regions and their influences on behavior, and appraises the links between population movements and regional and national changes. The perspectives put forward depart markedly from traditional approaches and offer an alternative to conventional thinking.
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