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Industry experts believe blockchain is a technology that has the potential to affect the business of most IT professionals in the next five years. Pick an industry you feel will be most affected by blockchain and how blockchain may be used in that industry. As an IT manager, how would you embrace blockchain? For instance, how would training occur for your team, what strategies might you use, what security methods may you recommend be used?Your paper should meet the following requirements:• Be approximately 2-3 pages in length, not including the required cover page and reference page.• Follow APA6 guidelines. Your paper should include an introduction, a body with fully developed content, and a conclusion.• Support your answers with the readings from the course and at least two scholarly journal articles to support your positions, claims, and observations, in addition to your textbook. The UC Library is a great place to find resources.• Be clearly and well-written, concise, and logical, using excellent grammar and style techniques. You are being graded in part on the quality of your writing.By submitting this paper, you agree: (1) that you are submitting your paper to be used and stored as part of the SafeAssign™ services in accordance with the Blackboard Privacy Policy; (2) that your institution may use your paper in accordance with your institution’s policies; and (3) that your use of SafeAssign will be without recourse against Blackboard Inc. and its affiliates.
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A BRIEF INTRODUCTION TO BLOCKCHAIN
“BLOCKCHAIN” HAS MANY MEANINGS
“To understand the power of blockchain systems, and the things they can do, it is
important to distinguish between three things that are commonly muddled up, namely
the bitcoin currency, the specific blockchain that underpins it and the idea of
blockchains in general.”
The Trust Machine, THE ECONOMIST, Oct. 31, 2015
“BLOCKCHAIN” HAS MANY MEANINGS
Phone
Blockchain
• The idea of a
phone network
• A specific phone
network (e.g.,
AT&T)
• A specific use of
the phone network
(e.g., fax)
• The idea of
blockchain
• The specific
blockchain that
underlies Bitcoin
or another coin
offering
• Bitcoin or another
cryptocurrency
WHAT IS BLOCKCHAIN?
A technology that:
permits transactions to be
gathered into blocks and recorded;
allows the resulting ledger to be
accessed by different servers.
cryptographically chains blocks
in chronological order; and
WHAT IS A DISTRIBUTED LEDGER?
Centralized Ledger
Distributed Ledger
Client A
Client
B
Bank
Node A
Node E
Client
C
Node D
Client D


There are multiple ledgers, but Bank holds the “golden record”
Client B must reconcile its own ledger against that of Bank, and
must convince Bank of the “true state” of the Bank ledger if
discrepancies arise


Node B
Node C
There is one ledger. All Nodes have some level of access to that
ledger.
All Nodes agree to a protocol that determines the “true state” of
the ledger at any point in time. The application of this protocol is
sometimes called “achieving consensus.”
WHAT IS A DISTRIBUTED LEDGER?
Single Entity
Multiple Entities
HOW MIGHT A DISTRIBUTED LEDGER WORK?
Users initiate
transactions
using their Digital
Signatures
Users Broadcast
their
transactions to
Nodes
One or more
Nodes begin
validating each
transaction
Nodes Broadcast
Blocks to each
other
Consensus
protocol used
Block reflecting
“true state” is
chained to prior
Block
Nodes aggregate
validated
transactions into
Blocks
WHERE MIGHT BLOCKCHAIN USE CRYPTOGRAPHY?
Initiation and Broadcasting
of Transaction
Validation of Transaction
Chaining Blocks
• Digital Signatures
• Private/Public Keys
• Proof of Work and certain alternatives
• Hash Function
THE POWER OF DISTRIBUTED LEDGERS
It can be used without a central
authority by individuals or
entities with no basis to trust
each other
BLOCKCHAIN
It can be used to
create value or issue
assets
It can be used to
transfer value or the
ownership of assets
• A human being or a
Smart Contract can
initiate the transfer
It can be used to
record those
transfers of value or
ownership of assets
• These records may be
very difficult to alter,
such that they are
sometimes called
effectively immutable
It can be used to allow
owners of assets to
exercise certain rights
associated with
ownership, and to
record the exercise of
those rights.
• Proxy Voting
The degree of trust between users determines the technological
configuration of a distributed ledger.
HOW MIGHT DISTRIBUTED LEDGER PROPOSALS DIFFER?
Participation
Open
Closed
Permission
Permissionless
Permissioned
Ledger Design
One ledger
One ledger or Segregated ledgers
Validation
Methodology depends on degree of trust between nodes. Where there is no basis
for trust, may be achieved through proof of work, which requires the algorithmic
solving of a cryptographic hash.
Consensus Mechanism
Mechanism depends on degree of trust between nodes. Where there is no
centralized authority, consensus may be determined algorithmically.
References
• Stoyanovich, M., & Tanz, F. E. (2019). Coming to Grips with Blockchain. Benefits Magazine,
56(5), 20-25. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?
direct=true&AuthType=shib&db=f5h&AN=135900272&site=eds-live
• Waldo, J. (2019). A Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Blockchain Universe. Communications of the
ACM, 62(3), 38–42. Retrieved from https://doi.org/10.1145/3303868
• Burns, S. (2019). Blockchain: Hype Vs Reality. Computer Weekly, 21-24. Retrieved from
http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?
direct=true&AuthType=shib&db=f5h&AN=138564674&site=eds-live
• Tarzey, B. (2019). Inside Blockchain and Its Various Applications. Computer Weekly, 16-20.
Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?
direct=true&AuthType=shib&db=f5h&AN=138681123&site=eds-live
• Carson, B., Romanelli, G., Walsh, P., & Zhumaev, A. (2018). Blockchain beyond the hype:
What is the strategic business value? McKinsey Quarterly, (4), 118–127. Retrieved from http://
search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?
WHAT MAKES INFORMATION STRATEGIC?
AN EXAMINATION OF ACCESS TO INFORMATION RESOURCES FOR
ENTREPRENEURS AND BUSINESS PERFORMANCE
by
Yao Zhang
Bachelor of Arts
Nankai University, 2006
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Master of Arts
The University of Sheffield, 2009
Submitted in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements
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For the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy in
Library and Information Science
College of Information and Communications
University of South Carolina
2016
Accepted by:
Kendra Albright, Major Professor
Samantha Hastings, Committee Member
Paul Solomon, Committee Member
Dirk Brown, Committee Member
Amir Karami, Committee Member
Lacy Ford, Senior Vice Provost and Dean of Graduate Studies
Pro Q ue st Num b e r: 10127104
All rig hts re se rve d
INFO RMATIO N TO ALL USERS
The q ua lity o f this re p ro d uc tio n is d e p e nd e nt up o n the q ua lity o f the c o p y sub m itte d .
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In the unlike ly e ve nt tha t the a utho r d id no t se nd a c o m p le te m a nusc rip t
a nd the re a re m issing p a g e s, the se will b e no te d . Also , if m a te ria l ha d to b e re m o ve d ,
a no te will ind ic a te the d e le tio n.
Pro Q ue st 10127104
Pub lishe d b y Pro Q ue st LLC (2016). Co p yrig ht o f the Disse rta tio n is he ld b y the Autho r.
All rig hts re se rve d .
This wo rk is p ro te c te d a g a inst una utho rize d c o p ying und e r Title 17, Unite d Sta te s Co d e
Mic ro fo rm Ed itio n © Pro Q ue st LLC.
Pro Q ue st LLC.
789 Ea st Eise nho we r Pa rkwa y
P.O . Bo x 1346
Ann Arb o r, MI 48106 – 1346
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© Copyright by Yao Zhang, 2016
All Rights Reserved.
ii
DEDICATION
This dissertation is dedicated to my parents, who offer me unconditional love and
support, who encourage me to chase my dreams, who want me to be me. To my future
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beloved one and children, thank you for letting me get prepared.
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ACKNOWLDEGEMENTS
I would like to acknowledge the vast amount of support of my friends and family.
Group JJNN and 110120, you and your beloved ones have made this journey full of joy. I
could have never made this far without the support from my warmest family members.
My appreciation also goes to Dr. Liangzhi Yu, who is the first person shows me
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the world of Library and Information Science, a role model of a scholar with great
attitude and elegance.
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My many thanks go to my committee, Dr. Sam Hastings, Dr. Paul Solomon, Dr.
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Amir Karami, and Dr. Dirk Brown. Your words of wisdom have made this process so
enjoyable. Thank you very much for your time and patience.
Dr. Kendra Albright, there will never be enough words to express my appreciation.
It is definitely the rightest decision I made to walk into your classroom in Sheffield.
My gratitude also goes to the SLIS family in USC and dearest friends at the
USC/Columbia Incubator. Life is so much easier with you guys around. Dr. Bob, don’t
work too hard, drink tea!
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ABSTRACT
The purpose of this study is to explore the nature of the relationship between the
access to and use of information resources of entrepreneurs and their business
performance. The survival and competence of organizations relies heavily on their
recognition of information as important strategic resource. Entrepreneurs, specifically,
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face a constantly changing environment and are in a disadvantaged competitive position
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in finance and experience compared with large companies. Access to, and use of
information resources, will help them improve their business performance.
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This study collects both qualitative and quantitative data, investigating the
entrepreneurs’ business performance and their behaviour in accessing and using
information resources. The qualitative data is applied to explore the technology incubator
consultants’ understanding of business performance indicators for entrepreneurial
businesses. For the quantitative data collection, entrepreneurs are selected from
technology incubators in the U. S to participate in a questionnaire survey. Structural
Equation Modeling (SEM) is used to process and analyze the data reflecting the business
performance, access to information resources, and use of information resources.
A preliminary Access-Performance model and a Use-Performance model are
presented. The results indicate that the use of information resources has a positive
influence on the performance of entrepreneurial businesses. No strong relationship is
revealed between the access to information resources and business performance.
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However, there is a high probability that the entrepreneurs have other information
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resource accesses options than those covered in the original model.
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TABLE OF CONTENTS
DEDICATION ……………………………………………………………………………………………………….. iii
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS………………………………………………………………………………………….. iv
ABSTRACT …………………………………………………………………………………………………………….v
LIST OF TABLES …………………………………………………………………………………………………. viii
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LIST OF FIGURES ………………………………………………………………………………………………….. ix
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LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS ………………………………………………………………………………………….x
CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION ………………………………………………………………………………………1
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CHAPTER 2 LITERATURE REVIEW …………………………………………………………………………….17
CHAPTER 3 METHODOLOGY……………………………………………………………………………………37
CHAPTER 4 DATA ANALYSIS …………………………………………………………………………………..48
CHAPTER 5 DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSION ……………………………………………………………….67
REFERENCES ………………………………………………………………………………………………………..77
APPENDIX A – SURVEY MATRIX FROM INCUBATOR……………………………………………………96
APPENDIX B – INTERVIEW QUESTIONS …………………………………………………………………….97
APPENDIX C – QUESTIONNAIRE SURVEY ………………………………………………………………….98
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LIST OF TABLES
Table 1.1 Definition of Independent Variables from Choo et al. (2008) ………………………12
Table 3.1 Dependent variables and measures …………………………………………………………..41
Table 4.1 Response rate of questions………………………………………………………………………52
Table 4.2 Codes for information resources access…………………………………………………….55
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Table 4.3 Access—Performance model fit ………………………………………………………………59
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Table 4.4 Significant test of variables in Access-Performance model (P (>|z|)) ……………60
Table 4.5 Use—Performance model fit …………………………………………………………………..61
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Table 4.6 Use—Performance model standardized parameter estimate ………………………..63
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LIST OF FIGURES
Figure 1.1 Stage of Firm Growth (Woodward et al, 2011)…………………………………………..8
Figure 3.1 Theoretical Framework of the Study ……………………………………………………….39
Figure 4.1 Age of the participants…………………………………………………………………………..49
Figure 4.2 Gender of the participants ……………………………………………………………………49
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Figure 4.3 Education background of the participants ………………………………………………..50
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Figure 4.4 Entrepreneurial experiences …………………………………………………………………..51
Figure 4.5 Revenue growth ……………………………………………………………………………………53
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Figure 4.6 Investment attracted………………………………………………………………………………53
Figure 4.7 Patents in holding or in pursuing …………………………………………………………….54
Figure 4.8 Access-Performance model ……………………………………………………………………56
Figure 4.9 Use-Performance model ………………………………………………………………………..57
Figure 4.10 Use-Performance model with parameter estimate ……………………………………62
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LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS
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CFA …………………………………………………………………………….Confirmatory Factor Analysis
EFA ……………………………………………………………………………… Exploratory Factor Analysis
ICTs…………………………………………………… Information and Communication Technologies
NAICS………………………………………………. North American Industry Classification System
RMSEA …………………………………………………… Root Mean Square Error of Approximation
SBA ………………………………………………………………………….. Small Business Administration
SEM …………………………………………………………………………… Structural Equation Modeling
SRMSR ……………………………………………………… Standardized Root Mean Square Residual
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CHAPTER 1
INTRODUCTION
1.1 Purpose of Study
The purpose of the present study is to investigate the nature of the relationship
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between the access to and use of information resources by entrepreneurs and their
business performance. This study focuses on entrepreneurs in technology incubators in
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the U. S. by investigating the information resources that are available to them and their
use of those information resources as well as their business performance using a
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quantitative data collection approach. Information and knowledge have, for a long time,
been regarded as valuable resources for strategic management and decision making
(Porter, 1998; Choo, 2005). Entrepreneurs face a constantly changing environment and
are in a disadvantaged competitive position in finance and experience compared with
large companies; access to and use of information resources will help them improve their
business performance. In addition, this study expands the issue by exploring the
relationship between access to and use of information resources in different industries.
Furthermore, it investigates whether access to and use of information resources have
positive or negative, financial and non-financial impacts on the companies studied. Using
a structural equation model, this study intends to address the complexities of those
concepts through the measured variables.
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1.2 Background
Entrepreneurs have been frequently linked to economic development and the
creation of wealth in the modern society (Lavoie, 2015). In addition, entrepreneurs have
played various roles throughout the history of economics (Barreto, 2013), for example:
the coordinator of resources, the arbitrageur in a world unbalanced with information, the
uncertainty-bearer in the business field, and the innovator of economic development
(Schumpeter, 1934). However, the failure rates of these businesses are consistently
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incredibly high. Only about half of entrepreneurs survive beyond five years (Lueg. et al,
2014). The number is even lower among high-tech oriented companies (Cader and
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Leatherman, 2011). Therefore, the sustainability of the entrepreneurs becomes a great
concern of research on entrepreneurs. The scope of this study goes beyond economic
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conditions to include a diversity of factors such as industry, location, and various
environmental factors (Luo and Mann, 2011). Sustainable development is defined as a
way of social and structural economic transformation that optimizes the current available
benefit without jeopardizing the potential benefit in the future (Goodland and Ledec,
1987), which, in the case of entrepreneurial businesses, means entrepreneurial entities
should make the best use of the available resources and still keep the potential benefit for
strategic development in the future. The entrepreneurs leverage a set of resources and
produce goods and services valued by consumers to earn a profit. However, this process
is not supposed to be a one-time activity. The entrepreneurs need to repeat this cycle or
an variation of it to achieve the development of their companies and eventually grow to
be stable businesses, which are capable of resolving challenges from outside and within
the organization.
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Information has become recognized as a strategic resource for business in the
“information age” (Davenport and Prusak, 1997, p. 3). The infusion and the wide
application of information and knowledge have revolutionized the way organizations
operate and conduct business. The survival and competence of these organizations will
heavily rely on their recognition of information (Choo, 2005). The purpose of this study
is to explore the nature of the relationship between the access and use of information
resources of the entrepreneurs and their business performance.
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Small businesses and entrepreneurs represent a vital and vigorous power in the
U.S. economy and have a significant impact on economic development. In the latest
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Small Business Administration (SBA) report, small businesses added 1.4 million net new
jobs through the first three quarters of 2014; in the first quarter of fiscal year 2015,
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venture capital investments totaled $23.4 billion (SBA, 2015). Entrepreneurs not only
contribute to economic growth and job creation but also lead in innovation. They are
responsible for half of all innovations and 95% of progressive changes in the U.S.
(Timmons and Spinelli, 2009). Innovation is the core ingredient of business success. It is
the application of a new idea or better solutions that meets existing or unarticulated
market needs. Information helps businesses discover existing opportunities as well as
potentially offering foresight to emerging trends, and, therefore, to allow businesses to
stay ahead of their competition as the environment changes.
The development of small business and entrepreneurs is even more significant in
the present economic environment. Economic development is abandoning the traditional
approach, which heavily relies on financial and labor capital, and shifting to a new
strategy, one which relies on building new businesses and supporting existing businesses
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(Edmiston, 2007). Supporting small businesses and entrepreneurs is the key intent of this
strategy, for small businesses and entrepreneurs are developing new ideas, creating
additional jobs, and producing innovative products and services. Entrepreneurship also
plays an indispensable role in the race fo …
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