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Spacious Office

The Digital


Innovation and Design

The Intelligent Network

International business has been transformed by the power of instantaneous communication.  The combination of computer and telecommunications has collapsed the time and distance factors that once separated nations, people, and business organizations. This chapter will examine the subject of intelligent networking, which provides the technology and electronic pathways that makes global communication possible for small and large organizations alike.  We start with the premise that the intelligent network is not one network but a series of networks designed to enhance worldwide communication for business and residential users.   What gives the network its unique intelligence are the people and users of the system and the value-added contributions they bring to the system via critical gateway points. We begin by asking the following question. What makes an intelligent network intelligent? Specifically, what are the defining characteristics and features that comprise so-called intelligent networks? Intelligence can be defined as the ability to reason, problem solve, think abstractly, comprehend complex ideas, and learn. Halal (1997) describes organizational intelligence as the “capacity of an organization to create knowledge and use it to strategically plan and adapt to its environment.”9


Four Working Assumptions about Intelligent Networks

When engineers discuss the architecture of a network, they are describing how the physical parts of the network are organized, including: 1) Information Pathways (network configurations), 2) Terminals (computers, smartphones, etc.), 3) Software (applications and protocols), and 4) Data Enhancement Equipment (modems, laser printers, Wi-Wi, etc.). First, as noted earlier, the intelligent network is not one network but a series of networks designed to enhance worldwide communication for business and individual users alike.12 Second, what gives the network its unique intelligence are the people and users of the system and the value-added contributions they bring via critical gateway points. Today, the Internet has grown exponentially in size and complexity due to the many contributions of its users, ranging from powerful search engines to unique Web site design as well as the aggregation of content.
           A third assumption is that intelligent networks do not operate in a vacuum. Rather, the use of intelligent networks are part of a greater human 

communication and organizational decision-making process.13 Nowhere is this more evident than in the creation of enterprise resource planning (ERP) and just  in time manufacturing (networks designed to aid business process. And fourth,   as intelligent networks grow and evolve, they often exhibit self-learning qualities in what can be described as network evolution.14 This is a crucial element in helping to explain what makes an intelligent network intelligent. More decidedly,  it speaks to the importance of Artificial Intelligence.

Photos: Pixabay


Suggested Video Presentations

History of Steve Jobs

From the 60 Minutes Archives: Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs: 2005 Stanford University Commencement Address

60 Minutes Interview with Bill Gates



Suggested Readings, Journals and Websites


Albarran, A., Faustino P. and Santos, R. (Eds.), (2011). The Media as a Driver of the Information Society.

Lisbon, Portugal: Media XXI / Formal Press.

Anderson, C. (2006). The Long Tail: Why the Future of Business is Selling Less of More. New York, USA: 

Brooke M. & Mills, W. (2003). New Product Development: Successful Innovation in the Marketplace.

Binghamton, New York, USA: International Business Press.


Carah, N. (2021). Media and Society: Power, Platforms, and Participation. Thousand Oaks, CA. USA: Sage.

Chesbrough, H. (2003). Open Innovation: The New Imperative for Creating and Profiting from Technology.

Boston, MA., USA: Harvard Business School Press.

Christensen, C. (1997). The Innovator’s Dilemma. Boston, MA., USA: Harvard Business School Press.


Christensen, C. (2003). The Innovator’s Solution. Boston, MA., USA: Harvard Business School Press.

Davidson, P. (2022). Democratizing Innovation in Organizations. Berlin, Germany: De Gruyter.

Dal Zotto, C & van Kranenburg, H. (Eds.), (2008). Management and Innovation in the Media Industry.

Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar.

Davila, T., Epstein, M. & Shelton, R. (2006). Making Innovation Work. Philadelphia, PA. USA: 
Wharton School Publishing.

Deuze, M., & Prenger, M. (2019). Making Media: Production, Practices, and Professions. Amsterdam,

Netherlands: Amsterdam University Press.  


Friedrichsen, M.  & Mühl-Benninghaus, W.  (Eds.), (2013). Handbook of Social Media. Berlin, Germany:


Gershon R. (2017). Digital Media and Innovation: Management and Design Strategies in Communication.             
Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. 

Gertner, J. (2012). The Idea Factory: Bell Labs and the Great Age of American Innovation. New York, USA: 

Penguin Press.

Gillespie, T. (2018). Custodians of the Internet Platforms, Content Moderation, and the Hidden Decisions

That Shape Social Media. New Haven, CN. USA: Yale University Press.

Isaacson, W. (2011). Steve Jobs. New York, USA: Simon & Schuster.

Isaacson, W. (2014). The Innovators. New York, USA: Simon & Schuster.

Johnson, S. (2010). Where Good Ideas Come From: The Natural History of Innovation. New York, USA: 

Riverhead Books.

Keen, A. (2007). The Cult of the Amateur. New York, USA: Doubleday.

Kelley, T. (2005). The Ten Faces of Innovation. New York, USA: Doubleday.

Kueng, L. (2020). Hearts and Minds: Harnessing Leadership Culture, and Talent to Really Go Digital.

Oxford, UK: Reuters Institute, University of Oxford.

Kim, W. &  Mauborgne, R. (2005). Blue Ocean Strategy, Boston, MA. USA: Harvard Business School Press.

Krumsvik, A. (Ed.), (2013). Media Innovations: A Multidisciplinary Study of Change. Göteborg, Sweden:


McDonald, P., Donoghue, C. and Havens, T. (Eds.),  (2021). Digital Media Distribution: Portals, Platforms,

Pipelines. New York, USA: New York University Press.

Noam, E. (2021). The Technology, Business, and Economics of Streaming Video: The Next Generation

of Media EmergesCheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar Publishing.

Poell, T., Nieborg, D. & Duffy, B. (2021). Platforms and Cultural Production. New York, USA: John Wiley & Sons.

Rogers, E. (1995). Diffusion of Innovation. 4th ed., New York, USA: Free Press.

Schmidt, E. & Cohen, J. (2013). The New Digital Age. New York: Alfred A. Knopf.

Schumpeter, J. (1942). Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy. New York, USA: Harper & Row.



Academy of Management Journal


IEEE Internet of Things Journal


IEEE Wireless Communications


International Journal of Media Management


Journal of Broadcasting and Electronic Media


Journal of Media Business Studies


Journal of Media Innovations

Research Policy


Technology Magazines and Websites



IEEE Spectrum


MIT Technology Review




Wired Magazine

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