The research explores the different governance systems used by senior IT managers to manage their strategic IT initiatives for business transformation, innovation and value creation. The research proposes a systemic model composed of three governance axes and two governance modes where exploitative efficiency-oriented IT initiatives are opposed to exploratory innovation-oriented initiatives.
While a decade ago IT was seen as a tool for automation, economies of scale and efficiency, today our research findings show that IT can also be used for innovation, growth and market creation. Existing IT management and governance approaches largely focus on exploitation and value creation through efficiency and do not provide the multi-dimensional perspectives needed to address the front-end of IT strategy where new systems are co-created in project contexts characterized by high levels of uncertainty and change. To manage such strategic IT initiatives managers need alternatives to the rational planning and forecasting techniques.