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Call for Nominations: The 2016 MIT Sloan CIO Leadership Award

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Jan. 19, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- The MIT Sloan CIO Symposium seeks nominations for the 9th Annual MIT Sloan CIO Leadership Award. The Award recognizes Chief Information Officers (CIOs) who lead their organizations by delivering business value and innovative use of IT in exceptional ways.  Finalists will be honored during a pre-Symposium reception, and the winner will be publicly announced during the Symposium on May 18, 2016.

MIT Sloan CIO Symposium

Nominees must hold the title of Chief Information Officer (CIO) or equivalent, and must be the highest-level IT leader in the organization.  Applicants, including self-nominations, are welcome from for-profit and not-for-profit organizations, and will be assessed on a common set of criteria.  The award judges include CIOs, industry thought leaders and MIT Sloan-affiliated professionals.

The Award, now in its ninth year, draws applicants from a wide diversity of industries and backgrounds. Recent award winners include:

  • Michael Nilles, CIO, Schindler Group & CEO Schindler Digital Business Ltd. (2015)
  • Thaddeus Arroyo, CIO, AT&T (2014)
  • Scott Blanchette, SVP, Information & Technology Services, Vanguard Health Systems (2013)

Past leadership award winners and their companies have received a competitive advantage by receiving this award through the recognition it brings.

"On behalf of Schindler, I am incredibly honored to have won the MIT Sloan CIO Leadership Award in 2015," said Michael Nilles, CIO of Schindler.  "The recognition speaks volumes about the exceptional vision and capabilities of the entire business and IT team at Schindler, and the commitment our organization has for excellence as we digitalize our worldwide operations – all while maintaining our leadership at the forefront of our industry."

The deadline for submissions is February 29, 2016 at 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time.  The online application can be found at Please contact with any questions about the application process.

Judging Criteria:

Key characteristics of CIO leadership include:

  • Exceptional Communicator - Articulates a vision for strategic business value from IT and works across the organization to build partnership around this vision. Focuses communications on value and innovation, not technology. Helps all IT staff to understand the business and speak the language of business leaders.
  • Recognized IT Leader ("Cheap Information Officer") - Clearly demonstrates value-for-money in the management of core IT services – providing the right services at the right price and the right level of quality. Recognized among peers as an effective leader of the IT unit.
  • Driver of Business Value ("Chief Improvement Officer") - Understands the business and needs of the CEO, CFO, Line-of-Business heads and other senior executives. Ensures clear focus on potential and realized value in all IT initiatives. Incorporates IT into business decision-making by participating in key strategic conversations, suggesting innovative uses of IT, and managing risk.
  • Trusted Partner ("CIO-Plus") – Exercises authority beyond IT itself. Considered a trusted member of the senior executive team, not just a technology leader. Suggests innovative uses of IT to transform the business – and successfully executes the changes. May receive additional non-IT responsibilities such as Chief Operating Officer or VP of Strategy, or strategic temporary roles such as Head of M&A integration.

These criteria are adapted from the award-winning book The Real Business of IT: How CIOs Create and Communicate Value, which draws extensively upon research conducted at MIT Sloan.

"The exceptional quality of our winners and finalists is just one indication of the amazing set of CIOs who apply for this award," said Dr. George Westerman of MIT's Initiative on the Digital Economy, Co-Chair of the Award Program.  "It is an honor to be part of a process where we can interact with and learn from such talented leaders, and we look forward to receiving applications for the 2016 award."

About the MIT Sloan CIO Symposium
The MIT Sloan CIO Symposium is the premier global event for CIOs and senior IT executives to become better business leaders in one day through actionable information that enables them to meet the challenges of today's changing global economy. The annual event offers a day of interactive learning and thought-provoking discourse on the future of technology, best practices, and business that is not available anywhere else. The Symposium is co-organized by the MIT Sloan Boston Alumni Association, the MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy (IDE), and the MIT Sloan Center for Information Systems Research (CISR). The 2016 Symposium will take place on Wednesday, May 18, 2016, from 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. EDT at Kresge Auditorium on the MIT campus (77 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA). 

Early bird event registration pricing is effective until March 1, 2016. For more information and to register for the Symposium, visit

Media Contact:
Sadie Smith                           
Warner Communications                                 

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SOURCE MIT Sloan CIO Symposium