Eusebio Scornavacca, associate professor of management information systems in the University of Baltimore's Merrick School of Business and a world-renowned expert on mobile information systems and digital transformation, has been named the University's Parsons Professor for Digital Communication, Commerce and Culture. The professorship is funded by Bob Parsons, B.S. '75, D.H.L. '08, founder of website hosting and domain registry giant Go Daddy and founder and CEO of Yam Worldwide, Inc.
The two-year appointment also includes the role of director for UB's Center for Digital Communication, Commerce and Culture, part of the University’s Office of the Provost. The center is a university-wide initiative that capitalizes on UB's intellectual assets, ranging from information assurance architecture, entrepreneurship, gaming and simulation, systems risk and resilience, forensic investigation, user experience, digital design, content and intellectual property rights. It aims to foster the development of digital competencies and leadership across constituencies, as well as the diffusion and advancement of digital innovations.
"We are delighted to have Prof. Scornavacca take on this important role at the University," said Darlene Smith, UB's executive vice president and provost. "We based this appointment on his international reputation as a scholar in digital transformation, as well as on his many relationships with companies large and small, both here and abroad, with key interests in making the most of the digital environment. There is great potential there, for his professorship and guidance of our center, to make a major impact in the field."
According to Scornavacca, "Digital technologies are rapidly disrupting a variety of industries across the globe and challenging institutions, organizational and social structures. Most importantly, the increasing presence of digital is changing the skillset needed for a successful workforce."
The center, he said, has the potential to serve as an interdisciplinary hub that promotes an understanding of the challenges and opportunities associated with an evolving digital ecosystem—from individual users to vast networks of people and devices. Through its activities in research, education and the application of knowledge, the center will convey an important understanding of the digital world in which we live.
"Helping our students, and communities far beyond the University, to achieve this understanding and acquire digital competencies will be vital to their careers and their lives," Scornavacca said.
Currently, Prof. Scornavacca, who also holds the Dean Clifford C. James Chair for Distinguished Teaching and the John and Margaret Thompson Professorship in the University of Baltimore's Merrick School of Business, is focused on mapping the digital environment, identifying key stakeholders and initiatives in order to develop a strategic plan that ensures the long-term viability of the center.
Over the next year, the Center for Digital Communication, Commerce and Culture will foster a number of research projects and host academic and industry events. In November, for example, the center hosted a presentation on cyber security by retired Lt. Gen. Rhett A. Hernandez, former commander of the United States Army Cyber Command. The center also is preparing to bring on a number of collaborative research projects and its first research fellow.
Learn more about Prof. Scornavacca.