An introduction from Bob Berkman, the new contributing editor to MIT Sloan Management Review’s Innovation Hub on Social Business.
Hello Social Business readers,
Greetings and welcome to the site! This month I begin as contributing editor for MIT Sloan Management Review's Innovation Hub on Social Business, so you’ll be seeing my name here often in this space. So let me start by introducing myself, and sharing a few thoughts about my own take on social technologies in the enterprise.
So what’s my story?
I’ve been a researcher, writer, author and professor in the information industry for over 25 years, as an author of several books on emerging technologies as well as an editor at large information firms such as McGraw-Hill and Ziff-Davis, and tiny niche ones too.
I also branched out to do my own thing — in 1988 I started up The Information Advisor, a Consumers Reports-type journal, but one focused on helping information pros choose the best content for their enterprise and be sharper researchers. I also teach (online) in the MA Media Studies program at The New School in New York City on social media and culture; new media ethics; and other information and communication trends.
I’ve been watching, researching and writing about technologies in business ever since I launched a series on Knowledge Management for The Information Advisor back in 1996: Eventually it became clear that it was not large, complex KM systems, but the social, Web 2.0 tools that were truly helping businesses better collaborate, find and share information and expertise and streamline operations. So in 2009 I replaced it with a series on Enterprise 2.0 and have been immersed in that movement ever since.
My mission here will be to share with you the most compelling, thought provoking and useful new reports, studies, news, findings and research on the use of social technologies in business — and let you know their practical significance. I’m particularly interested these days on anything that helps businesses show value from enterprise social initiatives — that means things like ROI, metrics, ways of measurement and so on. But I’m also closely tracking other emerging and timely issues — a few of these include the integration of apps and social; and best practices for initiating social technologies into specific business lines and functions.
But this is a blog, and that means — I hope — a two way dialogue with all of you. Please let me know what else you’d like to see discussed in this space and what’s on your mind.
Finally, my own larger take and philosophy on technology closely follows the thinking of one of my heroes, the late great cultural critic, author and professor Neil Postman. Postman founded the Media Ecology program at New York University, and authored several books on how to think about technology and media. All technology, he cautioned, is a Faustian bargain — we get something but always give something away too.
We’re here to help ensure that when you integrate social into your enterprise, that you do so in an efficient but thoughtful manner, with a minimum amount of unnecessary disruption and a maximum amount of real and meaningful benefits.
Looking forward to your comments and suggestions!