Our History

"MIS at The University of Arizona is at the intersection of two superlatives: MIS is one of the 'hottest' fields in America in terms of demand from students and employers; and MIS is one of the most highly-ranked programs at this University." Peter Likins, Past President, The University of Arizona 

The MIS Department at Eller College of Management is proud of its successes and accomplishments over the last four decades:

  • Our program has been a top-5 MIS program since the rankings began in 1989 (U.S. News & World Report).
  • We have generated more than $200 million in grants and other monies to fund research in collaborative systems, artificial intelligence, data management and decision making behavior.
  • We have educated over 200 doctoral students, over 1,500 Master's in MIS students and over 4,000 undergraduate MIS majors.
  • We have been a pioneer in establishing the first MIS curriculum in collaboration with Association of Computing Machinery (ACM) and other schools.
  • As information technology has evolved over the decades, our program, research, and successes have too evolved. We continue to re-invent to meet the new challenges of today. 

In the 70's, the field focused on the use of information technology to improve a firm's operational efficiency and costs. However, we learned that gathering data and generating reports does not necessarily lead to better decisions.

In the 80's, we built databases and decision support systems to help managers make better decisions. However, we realized that the systems need to be integrated if they are to help a firm remain competitive.

In the 90's we integrated systems to support process integration across the value chain. However, the Internet made a firm's value chain borderless and brought many more systems and stakeholders (customers, suppliers and global and regional partners) into a firm's view.

Now, in the 2000's, we recognize that management of the "borderless and connection rich" value chain poses many new challenges. A firm has to meet the needs of customers it never meets, manage suppliers far away across the globe, support partnerships with those that manage a firm's business processes, and remain flexible to meet the changing business and technology market place.

View our in-depth history here.