Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Kent, Marett

Committee Member

Kang, Martin

Committee Member

Otondo, Bob

Committee Member

Templeton, Gary

Committee Member

Blank, D. Brian

Date of Degree


Document Type

Dissertation - Campus Access Only


Business Administration

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D)


College of Business


Department of Management and Information Systems


Information technology (IT) investments have increased over the last half-century without clear justification in academic or practice-based literatures. One area that has not been adequately addressed in the past literature is the role of IT investments in mitigating firm financial vulnerability. This dissertation specifically attempts to understand the marginal effects of IT investments on financial vulnerability as defined by firm risk and R&D depreciation. Two research questions are pursued to help explain the role IT investments play in firm financial vulnerability: 1) What is the relationship between IT investments and R&D depreciation? and 2) What is the relationship between IT investments and firm risk? For this, I draw testable from the Real Options Theory. In addition, I develop measures of firm risk and the Depreciation of Business R&D capital. I source the data from three archival sources: Compustat, The Center for Research in Security Prices (CRSP), and the Ci Technology Database (CiTDB). This dissertation uses panel regression models using fixed effects to control the unobservable time invariant firm heterogeneity. To alleviate potential endogeneity and sampling biases, I use generalized method of moments models. The results suggest the relationships between IT investments and both firm risk and depreciation, namely that IT investments increase firm risk and decrease R&D depreciation.