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Technology and Trust

Competition is quickly changing from firm vs. firm to extended enterprise vs. extended enterprise. In order to compete like integrated firms, extended enterprises must have access to critical business information such as product specifications, marketing plans, and vast data on manufacturing process metrics, product movement within the supply chain, inventory, and sales. However, many firms struggle to share information both for fears of security and integration challenges. How can technology enable and impact trust in these business relationships?

NetHopeŚCollaborating for the Future of Relief and Development

Rebuilding Confidence: Trust, Control, and IT in Humanitarian Supply Chains

Digital Customer Collaboration at BAE Systems

Building Trust in a Collaborative Relationship: The Case of Align Technology

Aligning the Supply Chain: Align Technology
Aligning the Supply Chain: Align Technology, a teaching case
PDF (490KB)

Enhancing Trust through Information Sharing in the Extended Enterprise (EnTISE)
The Center for Digital Strategies' research on trust is part of a larger research program, Technology for Trust, that is managed by the Institute for Security Technology Studies. This program, which involves researchers from across Dartmouth, including computer sciences, business, and sociology, will address fundamental questions about the role of different types and sources of information for establishing trust, an important issue for both the commercial and public sectors.

In the EnTISE project, led by center director Eric Johnson and ISTS/CDS Senior Research Fellow Laura Kopczak, the center will study how, as web-mediated collaborative software is implemented, the resulting technology-enabled structure, work process and organization depend on and impact trust between the firms. Examples of collaborative software include shared databases or communications infrastructure, manufacturing execution systems and group decision support systems.

Sharing information throughout the extended enterprise is often thought to enhance trust. Even the simplest applications, like FedEx's tracking information, can boost the trust between customers and suppliers. In some cases, the increased trust can have far reaching implications. For example, information sharing in the home video rental industry provided the trust required to transform the industry through revenue-sharing contracts. The key contribution of this work would be an examination of the role technologies as an enabler of trust by creating transparency between organizations.

This research is supported in part by:

Institute for Security and Technology Studies (ISTS)
"Rebuilding Confidence: Humanitarian Organizations, Donor Relationships, and Digital Strategies" - ISTS Quarterly
"U.S. Bureau of Justice Funds Center Study" - press release
"Harnessing the Power of Partnerships," M. Eric Johnson, Financial Times