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How IT will challenge existing organizational forms and create Ambient organizations

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Published in "Proceedings of the International Information Systems Conference 2011" ; IT1 is likely to be as important to the way companies will organizein the future as electricity was to the industrial revolution. IT willrevolutionize entire industries and markets. IT will create newtypes of organizations that will surpass and outsmart traditionalorganizations. This has been predicted for more than a decade.But now it is happening especially in the music, newspaper andpublishing industries, and shall see it even more pronounced inthese sectors in the future. But it will not be limited to theseindustries; it will influence all types of industry and governmentorganizations.Already today, we see many examples of innovativeorganizational designs, enhancing organizational effectivenessand competitiveness.The paper will briefly discuss the potential of future ITdevelopments, and will proceed to give a short theoreticalbackground for why we see a growth in IT-facilitated neworganizational forms. A couple of interesting organizationaldesign will be mentioned, before we proceed to making theargument that any business process in principle may bereengineered, centralized or outsourced in one way or other.Interesting examples will be presented.We suggest that future IT will have such a profound impact onorganizational structure going far beyond the traditional ‘virtualorganization’ that it calls for a new organizational concept, whichwe have chosen to label the “Ambient Organization’.

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Niels Bjørn-Andersen

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