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In: Information Economics and Policy 7 (1995), S. 75-99
Diffusion patterns of communication technology and the intensity of its use vary from enterprise to enterprise, from industry to industry and from country to country. This is partly due to differing potentials for strategic use. The paper identifies "strategic use" with the exploitation of the network character of the technology and thus contrasts it with "traditional use", where the integrative power of communication technology is ignored. It is argued that a crucial variable in studying diffusion patterns is the process of network formation in a "user's environment". Environments comprise institutions which communicate with the firm under consideration or determine its strategic action with respect to communication technology. Finally, some suggestions are made for further research.