Pandemics: Impacts, Strategies and Responses – IDIMT 2021

1-3 September 2021, the 29th Interdisciplinary Information Management Talks (IDIMT) took place in Kutná Hora, Czech Republic [picture by Jenny Chroust].

During the almost 30 years of their history, IDIMT conferences have established themselves as an interdisciplinary and international forum for the exchange of up-to-date concepts, visions and experience in the area of creating and managing  information systems in their widest sense. Traditionally they have their major attendees from Austria and the Czech Republic.

Gerhard Chroust, the Programme Chair of the 29th IDIMT Conference (and all previous ones), opened the Conference with the following welcome address.

The COVID-19-Virus has considerably changed the landscape of scientific conferences and it has not been overwhelmed yet. The virus has demonstrated the vulnerability and fragility of our high-tech society with respect to human health and the resulting economic and social situation. At the same time, modern technology has enabled us to find relatively quick responses to medical threats by testing, vaccinating and overcoming of personal distancing due to electronic communication.

We were happy to be able to hold the 29th conference in a way that is compatible to previous conferences, but that has also been adapted to safety requirements, requiring a hybrid – mixed real and virtual – conference. We are therefore holding the anchor conference in Kutná Hora, as in the previous 4 years.  Additionally, a virtual mirror conference has been established in Vienna and several participants connected from their home offices.

The historic town of Kutná Hora reminds us of resilience and preservation of old values and perspectives while the Viennese mirror conference, taking place on the premises of the AIT Austrian Institute of Technology, a leading research company in digitalization, reminds us of modern communication technology. The Prague University of Economics and Business bridges these two worlds and symbolizes the cross-fertilization between them.

IDIMT conferences have always reflected on the up-to-date challenges of interdisciplinary cooperation and information management. Consequently, the 2021 conference explicitly addressed COVID-19, crises and pandemics, and their impact on all aspects of life.

This year we accepted 54 submitted papers plus 11 keynote papers and 2 invited papers with a total of more than 110 co-authors.       

The submissions had been reviewed in a two-step double blind review process in order to judge and to evaluate the acceptability of the papers. The authors received extensive comments and were required to improve their papers accordingly by a second submission. The authors came from 12 different countries: Austria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Germany, India, Kazakhstan, Lithuania, Netherlands, Poland, Russia, Slovakia and Ukraine.

The programme offered two parallel streams for in-person attendance and virtual participation by off-site participants. We had approximately 90 participants (due the virtuality of the conference an exact count is not possible).

For 2021 we chose the following topics:

• Digitalization and Industry 4.0 – Changes in Concepts Caused by COVID-19?

• Innovations and Strategies in a Pandemic Era.

• Digital Transformation in Crisis Management.

• Social Media, Fake News, Myths and Ethics.

• Digital Health – Emergency Support for Victims and First Responders.

• Smart Supply Chain.

• Cyber Security in a Digital World.

• Performance and Sustainability Management and Corporate Social Responsibility.

• Trust in Smart Robotics and Autonomous Systems – Resilient Technology, Economy and Society.

• COVID-19’s Impact on Enterprise Software Development.

• COVID-19’s Influence on Learning and Teaching.

The proceedings of the conference are published as:
DOUCEK, P., G. CHROUST, V. OSKRDAL (eds.) IDIMT-2021 – Pandemics: Impacts, Strategies and Responses, 29th Interdisciplinary Information Management Talks, Trauner Verlag Linz, Sept. 2021,  ISBN 978-3-99113-261-5, 495 pages

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