4th MBS Doctoral Conference: Insights Into Ongoing and Completed Research by DBA Candidates of Munich Business School

Participants of the 4th MBS Doctoral Conference, attending both in person on campus and online.

In mid-May, the now 4th MBS Doctoral Conference took place, where current DBA candidates of Munich Business School traditionally provide insights into their ongoing or already completed DBA research projects and receive new research impulses from keynote speakers.

Three years on since our first Doctoral Conference, we have developed an exceptional opportunity here at Munich Business School (MBS) to showcase the progress, as well as final outcomes of research conducted as part of our DBA program, run jointly with Sheffield Hallam University. Although we offered a traditional combination of talks by candidates from different cohorts, the conference opened to a hybrid format with audience both on MBS campus but also tuning in from all over the world. In the opening address by Prof. Dr. David Wagner, Academic Director of the DBA program and Vice Dean for Research at Munich Business School, participants learned more about the state of cutting-edge research taking place here at MBS and developments within our DBA program over the last 12 months.

DBA candidates present the status quo of their doctoral journeys

Our starting point for doctoral project presentations was Jasmin Gottselig and her insights into the disruption caused by digital transformation within the automotive industry. Her research explores the dynamic changes occurring at different levels of the supply chain, and different actors who play key parts in the automotive industry. Through exploratory case studies conducted with field experts, Jasmin was able to develop some key insights and gather feedback prior to the preparation of her final study.
In the second session of the day, another one of our DBA candidates, Harald Bos, presented his findings on evaluation of processes and due diligence checklists associated with management tools used for investment appraisals. Harald’s assessment puts those under the spotlight in the context of the Triple Bottom Line, looking not just in the context of profitability but also environmental and societal impact.
In the last session prior to our keynote presentations, Simon Zeiher reflected on the first steps of his doctoral journey, looking at the approach to navigating a complex landscape of existing research in specific and niche topics. Simon presented his methodology and an article for the European Conference on Information Systems (ECIS) 2023.

Keynote speeches at the 4th MBS Doctoral Conference provide new research impetus

In the highlight of the day, our first keynote speaker Dr. Martin Mocker, Professor of Information Systems at ESB Business School delivered a fascinating presentation on his latest book Designed for digital: How to architect your business for sustained success where he discusses the ways in which established companies can set themselves for digital transformation. The key element of this assessment is presentation of case studies by the likes of Amazon, BNY Mellon, Lego, Philips, USAA amongst many others. The presentation was followed by a Q&A session which was particularly important for DBA candidates focusing on the topic of digitalization within their industries and enabled interesting interactions, sharing of experiences and naturally network building.
In the second keynote, we had a great pride to host Dr. Dirk Dembski, CEO of Curasan AG and a graduate of the DBA program at Munich Business School. As a relatively fresh graduate, Dirk presented the final results of his doctoral research, discussing his thesis on Innovating Innovation Management in the Medical Device SME Sector Through Competition. After a fascinating presentation, again the floor was given to the audience in a Q&A session where participants not only wanted to learn about the subject but also the entire process from the commencement of the DBA till the submission of final thesis.

The final section of the 4th Doctoral Conference began with a presentation by Stefan Schnichels who focuses his research on customer-agent-relationship in the German insurance industry within augmenting digitization of its society. The research approaches digitalization within the insurance sector focusing on the value proposition in the advisory and sales process between customer and agents. Similar research considered retail sector in the past but when it comes to the drivers within the insurance business, such value proposition is not yet clear cut.
To complete the conference, we hosted Joanna Soesilowati who had just submitted her thesis on The Meaning of Leadership in a Semiconductor Industry. The research brings to the forefront a case study for a US chipmaker company and the ways in which best practices of leadership can be established to induce greater effectiveness in this very dynamic industry.

In a short wrap-up session, Prof. Dr. David Wagner was able to provide some general feedback to all conference participants and give a final address where future participation was encouraged. As part of the conference closing, we hosted a little social for our participants where informal exchanges and networking opportunities were explored. The 4th MBS Doctoral Conference was very successful and we are already looking ahead into the future with plans for the 5th Conference next year to which of course we invite not only potential or existing candidates, professors and alumni but also with great pleasure business leaders who may be interested in the topics presented and the potential networks that can be developed as part of this fantastic event.