Prof. Johnson teaches Data and Knowledge Management


Week 11 Follow-Up and Week 12 Reading

Week 11 Followup

Unfortunately, there is no Fox Class Capture available for Wednesday’s class. (The class capture did not follow us to the computer lab.) You can find a copy of the database we used for the exercises, along with the hand-out from class, here.

Week 12

Assigned reading:

a) Pivot Table Reports 101 (expand sections at bottom of page to read entire page.)

b) Learn to use Pivot Tables in Excel 2007 to Organize Data. If you have never used Pivot Tables before, or at a little bit rusty with them, I highly recommend downloading the example spreadsheet (available at the bottom of the article) and working through the examples.

c) Chapter 4 (Hacking Pivot Tables) of Excel Hacks, Second Edition by David Hawley and Raina Hawley (2007). Free online access available via Safari books online via Temple Library — on campus or search for Safari at Temple library database finder.

Reading discussion question:

a) When would you prefer to have a “data dump” to analyze data with Excel pivot tables and when would you prefer to use Access queries?

Week 11 Reading

Week 11 Reading Assignment

Chapters 1, 2, 3, 5, 7 and 8 of The Language of SQL by Larry Rockoff (2011). (That’s six of the first eight chapters of the book… they are short chapters 🙂

Free online access available via Safari books online via Temple Library — on campus or search for Safari at Temple library database finder.

Reading Discussion Question

– Why is SQL so popular?

– In what ways is SQL easy to use? In what ways is it hard to use?

Discussion Questions and Schedule Updates

First, a schedule update.

  • On Wednesday, November 10 and 17 MIS5101 will meet in the PC lab in Alter 602. This is the same lab we met in earlier in the semester.

Next, here are the discussion questions and reading assignments for the remaining case study weeks.

Week 10 – Topic: Outcome Measures


Case study: In-Vitro Fertilization: Outcomes Measurement

Performance indicator, Wikipedia:

Chapter 4 and Chapter 8 of Measuring the User Experience by Thomas Tullis and William Albert (2008). (Free online access available via Safari books online via Temple Library — on campus or search for Safari at Temple library database finder.)

Discussion Questions

1) If you ran an in-vitro fertilization clinic what are 2-3 key metrics you would want to track and why? Are these the same metrics a potential IVF customer would care about? Are they the same metrics that a national standards body should focus on?

2) What opportunities and challenges are there in developing better outcome measures and reporting for the IVF field? What specific data, if any, do you think Dr. Goldfarb should advocate developing national standards for collecting and reporting?

Week 13 – Topic: Security, Privacy and Data Mining


Case study #1: deCODE Genetics: Hunting for Genes to Develop Drugs

Case study #2: Dark Side of Customer Analytics (HBR Case Study and Commentary)

Why I’m releasing my genetic data online by Daniel McArthur, ( )

Discussion Questions

1) How would you apply the lessons from the deCODE case to the IFA/ShopSense scenario?

2) Case #2 includes four expert commentaries. Identify the commentary you agree with the most and and the commentary you agree with the least. Briefly summarize their arguments and expand on them to provide your own recommendations for IFA/ShopSense.

Assignment for Wed Class

Important announcements for this week.

1) For this week’s class, we are fortunate to have a guest presenter. The reading assignment for this week is to read his biography (below).

2) You do not need to turn in a weekly reading summary.

Here is background information on our guest:

Dan Garrett, Managing Director, Health Industry Advisory Group, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP

Mr. Garrett recently joined PwC as part of the Health Industries Advisory Practice executive team and brings to PwC his track record and experience in successfully leading large industry transformation initiatives across health care. Dan has worked with key industry executives across the leading commercial health plan, provider, and life sciences organizations and he has also served as an advisor and board level executive to key industry associations, and Federal Health care agencies. Engagements have ranged from strategic planning around HIT and the emerging technology enabled industry, execution work designing and then building out new business models, and IT initiatives to improve performance, effectiveness and quality at the payer, provider, community, state and country level. Mr. Garrett previously held the position of Vice President and Managing Partner of CSC’s Global Health Solutions (GHS) practice were he was responsible for leading all health care activities across CSC worldwide.

Mr. Garrett’s, most recent assignments have been focused on working with the industry to address the opportunity to collect and report metrics around the US healthcare system to drive competition, performance improvement, and to facilitate improved outcomes. Dan and the PwC team are working with Federal entities, large Providers, Health plans, RHIO’s and Industry Groups to insure that a strategy is in place so that information is produced , aggregated, and then presented to consumers and medical professionals so that they can make more informed decisions.

Mr. Garrett holds a bachelor’s degree in computer and information science from Temple University’s Fox School of Business, were he was recently awarded a distinguished alumni award, and he is certified at the CPIM (Certified in Production and Inventory Management) level by APICS, the association for operations management.

Dan is currently serving as the Vice Chairman of the Markle Foundation/Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s “Connecting for Health” initiative.

For Week 8 (20 Oct 2010)

First up, the discussion questions for the case:

  • Identify 2 or 3 of the most critical challenges facing the Vivek Kundra and make recommendations for how Kundra can tackle each of these challenges.
  • Who are the major stakeholders of and what are the specific threats and opportunities for each from this initiative?
  • Has met its objectives yet? If not, is on track to meet them? What needs to be done moving forward to enhance the initiative?

Second, two additional readings for week 8 on the topic of Business Intelligence:

Levinson, M. (January 15, 2006). Business Intelligence: Not Just for Bosses Anymore. CIO. or (1 page version)

Levinson, M. (May 15, 2007). The Brain Behind the Big, Bad Burger and Other Tales of Business Intelligence. CIO. or (1 page version)

See you all on Wednesday.

Week 5 Reading

Here is an update with the complete list of assigned reading for Week 5:

Case study: Intermountain Health Care

Additional reading:

As a reminder, here are the discussion questions for Week 5:

Discussion Questions

  • What is Intermountain’s approach to the management of health care delivery? What role does information technology play in this approach?
  • How do you rate the performance of Intermountain? In what ways do they effectively collect and analyze information? Why doesn’t everyone do it this way?
  • How would you describe Intermountain’s systems in relation to data, information, and knowledge management? What is the relationship between these three levels of processes?

What’s going on?

Question Mark by Margaret Anne ClarkeI’ve received a couple emails seeking clarification about what exactly is due when and how this week. To make sure we’re all on the same page, here’s a more concise version of the details from the syllabus:

1) Between now and the next class meeting, answer this week’s online discussion question: The Power of Powerpoint. This is what is referred to in the syllabus in the section “3) Participation between classes”:

Also, I will post a discussion question on the class blog 24-48 hours after each class meeting. The question will relate to the assigned reading, a topic discussed in class, or a relevant current event. Every student is expected to read and contribute to the online class discussion each week.

2) Between now and the next class meeting, read the assigned reading. The assigned reading is noted in the “Assigned Reading” section of the syllabus. For your convenience it can also be found in the Google calendar widget on the right-hand side of the class blog. This week the assigned reading is:

Case study: Balancing Access with Accuracy for Infant HIV Diagnostics in Tanzania (A)

Snibbe, A.C., Fall 2006. “Drowning in Data,” Stanford Social Innovation review.

3) When you are doing this reading, think about the discussion questions listed in “Assignments, Topics and Discussion Questions” section of the syllabus. You do not turn in answers to these questions. These are some of the topics we will discuss in class about the reading. This week the discussion questions are:

Discussion Questions:

  • What test(s) would you recommend for initial roll-out in Tanzania? Why?
  • Assume that one of the three tests is the sole choice for roll-out (choose one). What specific communication strategy would you use among key stakeholders to gain support for this test?
  • What is another example you can think of with a trade-offs between information access and accuracy? When is it better to favor access? When is it better to favor accuracy?

4) When you are done with the reading, prepare your weekly summary. This is what you turn in. The weekly summary is described in the syllabus section “1) Preparation for class”:

at the beginning of each class you will turn in a brief summary of the reading assigned for that class period. To facilitate discussion, please keep a copy for yourself in addition to the copy you turn in!

Your weekly summary will briefly address these three questions:

  1. What is one key point you took away from each assigned reading? (One-two sentences per reading.)
  2. What is one key point you learned from the reading as a whole? (One-two sentences maximum.)
  3. If you were facilitating today’s discussion, what question would you ask your fellow classmates?

That’s it!

I hope everyone is enjoying this beautiful weather. See you on Wednesday.

Getting started

It’s been great to hear from so many of you already. It’s good to know there’s so many students eager to get going with the semester!

I will hand out a detailed syllabus on the first day of class. Meanwhile, here’s the answer to the question I’ve heard the most: what is the textbook in this class?

The materials for this course are drawn from multiple sources. There is no required textbook for this course.

There is a set of required case studies which you can purchase online (see the “Purchasing Case Studies” section of the syllabus). Also, there are additional assigned readings throughout the course. Some of these are chapters of books that are available for free electronically via the Temple library. The remainder are available for free on the web.

For budgeting purposes, the total cost of the assigned business case studies is about $35. You can purchase and download all of them electronically, so there is no lead time required for shipping. All of the remaining assigned readings are available online for free.

Update: You do need to register at the Harvard Business website to purchase the case studies. I have updated to syllabus to correctly reflect this. (Thank you to Isaac Zlatkin for pointing this out!)

Update: Here’s the updated URL to use for the Harvard Business website.