A framework for applying real options analysis to information technology investments

Chris Wang Ngai Chan, Chun Hung Cheng, Angappa Gunasekaran, Kam Fai Wong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


The selection and valuation of information technology (IT) investments are challenging as they usually have long durations and require significant amount of capital expenditure. Given the high uncertainty inherent in these investments, traditional tools are proven insufficient to identify the true values. On the other hand, real options analysis (ROA) is a powerful valuation tool that put emphasis on the 'real options' of projects. However, most IT managers do not have the necessary skills to carry ROA. In this paper, we give introduction of ROA and propose an easy-to-use framework for using ROA to value investment opportunities. In addition, we discuss common types of real options and describe a case study of deferral option in a real-world investment opportunity. This paper should serve as a good starting point for managers who want to put ROA into practice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)217-237
Number of pages21
JournalInternational Journal of Industrial and Systems Engineering
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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