Domestic and global companies are increasingly using information and communication technologies as a means of delivering their strategic visions and thus maintaining a competitive advantage. The value of information assets has increased as firms’ asset base shifts from tangible to intangible properties, placing a premium on firms’ capacity to develop, manage and utilize their information assets. In this environment, companies aim to strengthen their business control over IT resources, maximizing performance through defining the responsibilities of all staff involved in IT resource management and processes. However, while most managers acknowledge the importance of managing IT assets within a framework of IT governance (ITG), only a small number of academic treatments deal with ITG, meaning that businesses often find themselves making their governance decisions in a vacuum. This chapter therefore aims to clarify the concept of ITG through conducting a literature review, suggesting some implications of this work for practitioners, and indicating directions for the future study of ITG.
In reviewing the existing ITG research relating to ITG, we surveyed a wide range of recent research in academic and industrial fields. While most review articles take account only of articles in the top academic journals in their areas, we found it desirable to take in as many references as possible covering IT-related practitioner articles and the industrial presentations given by consulting firms (Webster & Watson, 2002). This is because research in ITG is led by industry as much as by academics. The source materials surveyed for this chapter include: first, the leading journals n the MIS field, such as MIS Quarterly, Information System Research, Journal of Management Information Systems, Communications of the ACM, the Harvard Business Review, and the Sloan Management Review, and second, related articles found through academic search engines such as Business Source Premier, Science Direct and the AIS e-library. In addition, we reviewed articles arising out of some important conferences such as ICIS, ECIS, ACIS, PAICS, AMCIS, HICCS, ITG International Conference and Korean journals and conferences. The range of articles studied thus spanned publications in academic journals, working papers, the technical reports of major institutions, and books. Our searches were governed by the keyword(s) ‘IT/IS governance’. We found a total initial sample of 144 articles, 30 of which were removed from the review process due to only treating ITG tangentially. As a result, a total of 114 articles were obtained and carefully reviewed.