STRATEGIC INFORMATION FOR COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE
Co-inventor of the Chief Information Officer (CIO): An application of key lessons on the transformation from science to technology to invention to diffusion in practice is Dr. Gruber’s co-invention of the Chief Information Officer (CIO) concept with the late William S. Synnott, then senior vice president of the Bank of Boston. The CIO has since achieved global recognition, such as in the 1985 IBM Bulletin article "Chief Information Officer: A Management Concept Whose Time Has Come" where Synnott-Gruber Information Resource Management: Opportunities and Strategies for the 1980s (Wiley, 1981) is recognized as the initial naming of the CIO.
CIO Insight China in 2010 interviewed Dr. Gruber for an article to update his invention of the CIO: “The Early Stage of the CIO: How CIOs can succeed in today’s uncertain environment.” Following this interview, he gave the keynote address at the 2010 Sino-America CIO Summit (Beijing) on “New roles for the CIO in a new global economic environment of complexity, discontinuity, and high uncertainty.”
Dr. Gruber co-authored The New Management: Line Executive and Staff Professional in the Future Firm (McGraw-Hill, 1976) with John S. Niles, president of Global Telematics, that provided early recognition that in an era of discontinuity and uncertainty experience-based executives required research-based skills to be effective. This book anticipated what is now called “quantitative management.”
Dr. Gruber has over four decades of experience in how to be innovative in the management of industrial and health sectors in the economy. He is the former CIO of Risk Management Foundation (RMF) of the Harvard Medical Institutions, a medical malpractice insurance company. Dr. Gruber assisted RMF to launch a number of technology-enabled strategic initiatives including a new venture to sell RMF’s big data analytics malpractice claims database to a national market. This database now in 2015 includes claims data from over 400 hospitals, including more than 30 academic and teaching hospitals.
The breadth of Dr. Gruber's career has been enabled by recognition of the challenge to perform in what is a very specialized world of knowledge. In 1975 Gruber published “The Utilization of Specialists by Company Presidents” in The Presidents Association. His research, teaching and consulting has included the management of specialization in the information systems/user and the research and development (R&D) scientist/engineer contribution to organizational goals. His efforts to enable understanding among multiple stakeholders faced with rapid change and uncertainty include the conference on "Information Power" he co-chaired with the late William S. Synnott, the source of the 1985 BusinessWeek cover story, "Information Power.”
Dr. Gruber founded Research & Planning, Inc (R&P), a multi-million dollar consulting firm specialized in assisting clients in the strategic use of information technology. R&P served many of the country's leading vendors, DEC, IBM, Wang, Lotus, Reuters (partial list), and important users of information technology, such as Citibank, Chase, Bank of Boston, Nationwide Insurance, and Liberty Mutual (partial list).
© 2019 William H. Gruber