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Center for Business, Technology & Law

Welcome to the homepage of the Center for Business, Technology & Law. This website is designed for professionals and academics interested in information technology, business strategy, and law and regulatory policy.


The mission of the Center for Business, Technology, and Law (CBTL) is to bring together the distinct but related fields of Information Technology, Business Strategy, and Law and Public Policy to study the various aspects of Electronic Commerce. The Center complements and shares joint research projects with other leading centers at the Texas Business School, including the Center for Research in Electronic Commerce, the Center for Customer Insight, the Center for Computational Finance, the Center for International Business and Education Research, and the Center for Energy Finance. CBTL operates in strong partnership with local Austin firms as well as national and multinational firms that were either born on the web or are moving their operations onto the Internet. The Center is primarily focused on research and thought leadership.

During its inaugural year, CBTL supported efforts focused on transitioning firms to the new digital economy and to new forms of organizing and leveraging. To this end, the Center is particularly interested in supporting research and educational programs involving the following questions:

E-Business Models

What will tomorrow's e-business forms look like? And from where will they come?

  • How will brick-and-mortar firms move operations into electronic commerce? Are the barriers and opportunities technologically, organizationally, or policy driven?
  • Do brick-and-mortar companies have advantages over born-on-the-web companies in cyberspace operations and in managing change?
  • Will e-business forms be more centralized in their governance? Less centralized?
  • Will e-business operations be transnational by mere existence? Or must globalization be by design or by journey?

Knowledge Management in Cyberspace

How will knowledge assets be managed in cyberspace?

  • Will knowledge assets be identifiable and manageable in cyberspace?
  • Can intellectual property laws (patent, copyright and trade secret laws) be relied upon by e-business to protect knowledge assets in cyberspace?
  • In the absence of strong norms or laws, how will knowledge assets be used and protected by e-businesses?
  • How will open Internet architectures (open code, open content, open governance) influence the management of knowledge assets?
  • How do issues of privacy regarding customer, employee, and business partner information affect the management of knowledge?

Integrated Strategy

How will tomorrow's e-business models integrate technology, market, and policy strategies?

  • What policy strategies work today for e-business and which ones will be part of tomorrow's e-business model?
  • What technological solutions are developed by e-business in response to regulatory threats?
  • How will intellectual property laws be used to protect e-business markets?
  • How will transnational organization strategies be used to circumvent policy roadblocks?
  • What is the role of information technology managers in developing company strategies in the face of changing global political and regulatory environments?

Nonmarket Environments

How do the political, legal and cultural environments impact the structure and operations of e-business firms?

  • What political, legal and cultural issues will impact the way e-business operations?
  • How do e-business companies operate in uncertain cultural, political and regulatory environments?
  • What policy issues unite and divide e-businesses?
  • How do e-businesses build trust, reliability and legitimacy and how does the underlying cultural, political, and regulatory environments of the merchant and the customer affect trust building and reliability-enchancing strategies of the merchant?
  • How is the electronic commerce industry changing with the greater collaboration of firms via industry councils, trade associations, joint university-industry ventures, and the like?
  • How are these forms of collaboration affected by the life cycle of the industry?