Information Technology (IT) is becoming more and more important for sustaining competitive advantage and increasing business success of small and medium-sized enterprises (SME). In this context, IT outsourcing is enjoying a growing proliferation. Cloud Computing, a new computing paradigm, in essence, refers to outsourced IT resources accessible through thin interfaces (e.g. a web browser). Despite its promising potential, SMEs are still reluctant in adopting cloud services compared to larger enterprises. The economic landscape of Baden-Württemberg is characterized by an elevated export orientation and high technology competence. Cooperation among companies is considered highly important to the economy of this region, which exhibits a strong automotive manufacturing and a significant small and medium-sized business sector.
The research project Cloud Mall BW aims at exploring and developing open cloud ecosystems and exhibits a regional focus on the federal state Baden-Württemberg. Thereby, the project aspires to facilitate the communication and exchange among SME providers and users of cloud services. This helps providers to engage in inter-organizational cooperation and users to find trustworthy, high-quality cloud services. Furthermore, the development of integrated cloud services in the context of Cloud Mall BW should position the region Baden-Württemberg in the IT-sector positively. The project thus aims at retaining the competitiveness of SMEs located in this region. In order to meet the domain-specific requirements of different enterprises, the project exemplary addresses start-up companies as well as SMEs affiliated to industry and retail segments. During the project, various scenarios will be developed and implemented as integrated cloud services. The Institute for Enterprise Systems (InES) accounts for the development of a cloud ecosystem addressing the retail domain. In this context, the InES and project partners Fraunhofer IAO, Fraunhofer IPA and bwcon GmbH investigate the specific requirements of cloud service providers and users.
Further information is available on: www.cloud-mall-bw.de
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