Pioneering IS as an Academic Field


In the 1960s, almost every major research-oriented university in the world had one or more faculty members interested in the potential of electronic computers. These pioneers began to get acquainted and to cooperate in sharing ideas and plans. Davis was at Minnesota in 1967 when the faculty interested in information systems obtained university approval of MS and PhD degrees in management information systems. It was a significant event that energized the faculty in cooperative efforts with other faculty at other universities. Davis was there when the academic field emerged from these cooperative events and academic leaders emerged for the new field. He will review some of these important events and my view of how the field emerged as a worldwide community of IS scholars and some of those who were important in the work to accomplish it.

Gordon Davis is an AIS Leo Award recipient for Lifetime Service to the Field of Information Systems and Professor Emeritus of Information and Decision Sciences at the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota. He served as president of AIS in 1998.