Risky business: Perceptions of e-business risk by UK small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs)

Kevin Grant, David Edgar, Arun Sukumar, Martin Meyer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Citations (Scopus)


This paper explores the risk perceptions of key stakeholders in SMEs when making decisions on technology investments. Current literature focuses on the nature of the technology from a technical perspective and its associated benefits to the SME. We seek to make a contribution that builds on the small but growing work, which views investment technology decisions as the outcome of a process of both objective and subjective risk assessment. Evidence presented in this paper suggests that subjective elements play an important part in assessing technology risks. Our empirical findings are that both e-business experience and the role of the decision-maker within the firm influences risk perception, whereas, sector differences are more modest. One implication of our findings is that policy interventions should be more sensitive and targeted at different types of stakeholders - owners, IT professionals and other individuals rather than on the sector in which the SME operates.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)99-122
Number of pages24
JournalInternational Journal of Information Management
Issue number2
Early online date27 Dec 2013
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • e-Business
  • Perception of risk
  • Risk
  • SME
  • Survey
  • Technology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Information Systems
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Library and Information Sciences

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