Project Contract for Traci J. Hess ESM 5984 Scientific Visual Analysis w/Multimedia
Project Contract

Traci J. Hess
2300 Terra Bella Street
Blacksburg, Virginia 24060
Phone: 953-3840

Project Title:

Using Visualization as an Analytical Tool in Academic Research: Research in Progress - Investing in Information Systems for Competitive Advantage Versus Competitive Necessity.

Project Goals

The goals of this project are both analytical and educational. I hope to identify relationships in the data beyond those that would be evident through the application of statistical programs using the pattern-function extraction method. The visual representations should also enhance my understanding of the relationships discovered through these statistical programs. This project will serve as a discovery process for how academicians and business professionals can utilize scientific visualization tools.

Problem Domain:

The data consists of performance measures from 251 large firms (trading on national exchanges) for the years 1985 through 1994. These performance measures include:

Dependent Variables

The firms will be broken into three categories. Those that invest in information systems for (1) competitive advantage, (2) competitive necessity and (3) both competitive necessity and advantage. The extent to which a company pursues the following five strategic thrusts (C. Wiseman, 1988) will serve as independent variables.

Independent Variables

Both the dependent and independent variables will be analyzed for internal correlations (ie. a correlation between the two strategic thrusts of Growth and Differentiation).

The financial data was obtained from Compustat through a SAS program and is currently residing on VTVM1. Non-financial data is currently stored in a DBASE file on VTVM1.

Visual Tools

I will use PV-WAVE for most if not all of the project's visual analysis. I have not selected the multimedia programs that will be used for the project presentation.