Original Research

Chief information officers: an empirical study of competence, organisational positioning and implications for performance

Jason Cohen, Claire M Dennis
South African Journal of Economic and Management Sciences | Vol 13, No 2 | a46 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajems.v13i2.46 | © 2010 Jason Cohen, Claire M Dennis | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 02 July 2010 | Published: 03 December 2010

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Jason Cohen, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa
Claire M Dennis, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa

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The role and contribution of the firm’s Chief Information Officer has been the subject of much debate and uncertainty. Yet, too few empirical studies have examined the implications of the CIO role. This study examined the effects of CIO demography, CIO competencies as well as CIO organisational positioning on the contribution of information systems (IS&T) to business performance. Data was collected from 111 South African companies and results revealed that CIO business, interpersonal/political and technology management competence have significant direct effects on the dependent variable. The effect of CIO organisational position, including structural power and political relationship, was found to be mediated by CIO competence. CIO work experience also impacted the contribution of IS&T. Results have important implications for our understanding of the competencies and organisational positioning required of executives charged with the responsibility for information systems and technology management.


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