When you first hear, ‘Management of Information Systems and Digital Innovation’ you would be forgiven for thinking that this programme is just about technology – software, hardware, new trends and coding. Perhaps you would assume that you need a technical background to pursue a Masters in this. But you’d be wrong.

Whether you have an undergraduate degree in political science, finance or any other subject, what you really need to study this programme is motivation.

Technology has become an important part of our lives, both at home and in the workplace. Many professions are affected by technological evolution, be it finance, international relations, politics or even fashion. Witnessing this emphasised, to me, the importance of studying the reasons why technology has changed the way in which people work, think and live.

The MISDI programme has not only built my technical knowledge but helped me to answer critical questions like:

“What kind of change is this business facing?”

“Why don’t all technological innovations succeed?”

“Why do some tech start-ups flourish whilst others fail?”

“When, and why do companies decide to adopt new systems?”

Although it can be argued that much of this knowledge can be acquired through practical experience and experimentation, I believe there is much to be learned from other’s experiences and from case studies, which can help us to make better decisions and mitigate possible risk more effectively. This programme has helped me to embrace different views and better plan how to move forward in my career.

So, who should consider pursuing the MISDI programme?

Someone who looks to the future and sees innovation

Technological innovation is happening continuously as robotics and AI advance. New technologies are increasingly replacing and adapting human roles in different spheres of work in almost every industry. It is important to learn how to manage, manipulate, merge or modify machines to suit business or governance needs, and understand how to work in an increasingly digital business landscape

Someone who wants to work for the tech sector but doesn’t have a technical background

Students enrolled on this course come from a diverse range of fields such as politics, economics, finance, and sociology. But regardless of student’s backgrounds, the first few modules taught help to build a solid foundation for further research in the field of Information Systems, by providing theoretical concepts and perspectives, as well as a knowledge of business processes and strategies in digital businesses.

Someone who wants to learn what it takes to create digital technology

If you are from a computer science, engineering or electronic background, this programme still has a lot to offer. As a computer engineer, I always assumed that software and hardware development was the most important aspect of a digital business. But this programme made me realise that it is only 10% of the process. People usually learn this through work experience, however, one year of this course is also enough to help students to understand the complexity and diversity of this industry. It also gave me a greater insight into how digital business practices differ in different geographies and how culture influences this.

In the second term of the programme students are given the freedom to take modules in other departments. I opted for a course in management accounting, which broadened my knowledge of how technology is changing accounting practices in organisations globally.

Someone who is inquisitive about emerging domains of digital innovation and the change they bring

The evolution of technology is undoubtedly changing society and business practices. Organisations are moving from traditional ERP systems to the Cloud, and the future holds even more innovations such as the integration of Blockchain technology and, further down the line, AI. This programme helped me to understand new technologies and the changes and opportunities that we must be prepared for.

Someone who wants to solve business problems and create new opportunities using technology

Technology is one of many tools that organisations use to help solve problems. The entire process of problem-solving involves gathering and analysing data, and then putting forward solutions that remedy business issues. Management and other personnel rely on this to help them make important decisions. The two concepts seem independent to some people, but in this programme, we’ve learned that there is a close relationship between problem solving and decision-making.

Someone who wants to develop sound theoretical understanding backed with practical examples

Modules like “Information Systems Theory” taught us why one technique works where another fails. It granted me a wider perspective, built the context, and helped me strategise. And although this course does not teach coding, there is a ‘CodeCamp’ organised every summer at the LSE campus which can boost practical knowledge. The theory learned in this course maps out a direction for our future digital world.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Sanjana Rathi is a student on the MSc Management of Information Systems and Digital Innovation in the Department of Management at LSE. Having done undergraduate studies in Computer Engineering and a Diploma in Cyber Law, she hopes to pursue a career in the field of Technology Policy and Management in the future.