Ralph H. Sprague Jr. was a leader in the MIS field and helped develop the conceptual foundation for decision support systems (DSS). In this paper, I pay homage to Sprague and his DSS contributions. I take a personal perspective based on my years of working with Sprague. I explore the history of DSS and its evolution. I also present and discuss Sprague’s DSS development framework with its dialog, data, and models (DDM) paradigm and characteristics. At its core, the development framework remains valid in today’s world of business intelligence and big data analytics. I present and discuss a contemporary reference architecture for business intelligence and analytics (BI/A) in the context of Sprague’s DSS development framework. The practice of decision support continues to evolve and can be described by a maturity model with DSS, enterprise data warehousing, real-time data warehousing, big data analytics, and the emerging cognitive as successive generations. I use a DSS perspective to describe and provide examples of what the forthcoming cognitive generation will bring.
Watson, H. J. (2018). Revisiting Ralph Sprague’s Framework for Developing Decision Support Systems. Communications of the Association for Information Systems, 42, pp-pp. https://doi.org/10.17705/1CAIS.04213