Are CIO's any different? analyzing the job tenures of C-suite executives in the public sector

Gregory S. Dawson, Robert J. Kauffman

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

We often hear anecdotes that suggest the real meaning of the acronym "CIO" is "career is over," rather than chief information officer. The premise of the quip is that CIOs' career paths and tenure (or survivability) in their positions may not the same as those of other C-suite executives: the chief executive officer (CEO), the chief financial officer (CFO) and the chief operating officer (COO). Is this truly the case? What evidence is available to assert that CIOs exhibit shorter job tenure than their C-suite executive colleagues? This research explores three alternate theoretical interpretations that compare and contrast reasons why team-building, the turbulence of the business and organizational environment, and the gender of the executive appear to have different impacts on the tenures of the different categories of executives. Our empirical research takes advantage of a new data set acquired during Spring 2009 from the State of California that provides information on C-suite executives from 223 state agencies. The data consist of 504 observations of executive tenure, including their start and finish dates, and the relevant variables for their organizational, market and technological environments that permit us to assess their survivability. To conduct this exploratory analysis of the empirical regularities of public sector executive tenure, we utilize statistical methods from epidemiology and public health. Our results cast doubt on many of the enduring beliefs about public sector CIOs by showing the relative infrequency of their job changes and by showing that job changes are, unlike for other C-suite executives, more closely tied to instances of environmental turbulence. In all, this exploratory paper suggests a reexamination of the way that public sector CIOs are viewed relative to other C-suite executives.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 43rd Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, HICSS-43
DOIs
StatePublished - May 7 2010
Event43rd Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, HICSS-43 - Koloa, Kauai, HI, United States
Duration: Jan 5 2010Jan 8 2010

Publication series

NameProceedings of the Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences
ISSN (Print)1530-1605

Other

Other43rd Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, HICSS-43
CountryUnited States
CityKoloa, Kauai, HI
Period1/5/101/8/10

Keywords

  • C-suite executives
  • CIO
  • Chief information officer
  • Empirical research
  • Environmental turbulence
  • Executive teams
  • Kaplan-Meier curves
  • Survival analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)

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    Dawson, G. S., & Kauffman, R. J. (2010). Are CIO's any different? analyzing the job tenures of C-suite executives in the public sector. In Proceedings of the 43rd Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, HICSS-43 [5428601] (Proceedings of the Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences). https://doi.org/10.1109/HICSS.2010.67