The University of Southern Queensland (USQ) is planning local research and analysis into the adoption of IT service management improvement programs based on the IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL) framework and other best practices.
A first in Australia, the research is being financially supported by local industry body the IT Service Management Forum (itSMF).
The itSMF Australia will also help develop IT service management course content to be included in the curriculum of USQ's IT courses.
Peter Cross, itSMF Australia chairman, said the research is based on a proven methodology and will fill a current void of data on IT service management maturity in local organizations.
"It has been very difficult in the past to obtain any local data at all on Australian organizations that have embarked on IT service management programs," Cross said.
"Identifying ITIL adoption trends and any unique local market characteristics is critical to furthering our cause of championing the benefits of process-driven IT service management."
Cross said the itSMF membership base is interested in peer review and knowledge-sharing about the right and wrong way to approach IT service management challenges.
"This is exactly the type of research that will allow them to compare what they are doing within their own operations to local trends and similar surveys conducted in the US and Europe," he said.
The USQ research team, led by Dr Aileen Cater-Steel and Dr Wui-Gee, conducted an initial survey of delegates at itSMF Australia's national conference in Brisbane last year.
The methodology developed for this survey now forms the basis of ongoing research in the area of IT service management improvement trends.
Findings were presented in New Zealand and they will also be presented later this month in Sweden.
USQ head of department of information systems in the faculty of business, Dave Roberts, said the goal is to progressively include more ITSM concepts into IT courses.
Future USQ IT graduates will have completed the ITIL Foundation Certificate.
"In Australia we are seeing a clear shift in focus from programming and technical-based courses as the major emphasis to service management and the business issues of information systems," Roberts said.
"We gauge on the type of courses our students are looking to enroll in and there is a shift in demand from technical to business courses.
"The demand for these sorts of courses indicates they feel their employment prospects are advantaged if they are experienced in ITSM trends and standards."
The ninth national ITSM conference will be held at the Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre from August 28 to 30, 2006.