The more, the better? Diversification Trends in Executive and Supervisory Boards in Germany and their Potential Effects

Bogdan Bedelev, Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich (Bachelor thesis)
Junior Management Science 8(3), 2023, 569-590

In 2015, Germany passed the Gender Quota Law, and while some countries compelled listed companies to reserve at least 30% of their executive seats for women, imposing fines on the firms that failed to comply, Germany favoured soft-law quotas with almost no penalties. Additionally, this policy focused solely on supervisory board quotas and measures to counteract women’s under-representation, neglecting other demographic and cognitive groups. Given the increasingly diverse population in Germany, it is necessary to study the role of other diversity dimensions in the board composition from the financial and social perspectives and whether there are any development trends in the German boards. In my Bachelor thesis, I study whether there are any diversity improvements in the composition of German-listed companies‘ executive and supervisory boards, presenting recent academic findings on the drivers and the effects of diverse boardrooms. Moreover, I conduct a descriptive analysis of the German board diversity trends, implementing a novel diversity index of Bernile et al. (2018) covering various diversity facets.

Keywords: Controlling; Leadership; Board diversity; ESG; Corporate governance.

The implementation of financial planning and cost accounting instruments in startups

Markus Pfützenreuter, Technische Universität Berlin (Masterarbeit)
Junior Management Science 8(2), 2023, 270-311

This master thesis examines the question of how financial planning and cost accounting instruments are implemented in startups depending on their development stages. For this purpose, eleven semi-structured interviews were conducted with executives of startups in different development stages and an external expert. The results of this study show that startups follow a uniform approach along the development stages when implementing financial planning. Regarding the implementation of the individual financial planning instruments and cost accounting, various implementation differences and development steps between the development stages were identified. These differences and development steps are related to the industry, company growth, and business model expansion of the startups. Overall, this master thesis provides new and valuable insights for startups and scientists. For startups, the results are indications for the implementation and expansion of financial planning and cost accounting. For the scientific community, the results of this thesis represent the first cross-stage investigation of the implementation of specific management control systems.

Keywords: Startups; Financial planning; Cost accounting; Management control systems.

The role of management control systems in reducing and preventing managerial misreporting: A critical analysis

Michael Keck, Heinrich-Heine-Universität Düsseldorf (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 8(1), 2023, 68-95

To manage the company efficiently, management control systems depend on truthful information from their employees. In contrast to the classical principal-agent theory, in which managers represent purely self-interested individuals, behavioral science research has shown that honesty preferences play a role in managers‘ decisions. The aim of this thesis is to investigate how management control systems can contribute to reducing and preventing managerial misreporting through a clever design of control instruments. The object-of-control framework of Merchant/Van der Stede (2017) is used in the context of this study. Based on literature, formal and informal control instruments are examined for their potential to bring truthful reporting in the interest of the company. The results show that management control systems can contribute to reducing and preventing managerial misreporting through a clever design of the control instruments, and that companies can benefit from managers’ honesty preferences. The management control system should take care to behave fairly toward managers itself and, in particular, implement measures that improve social norms for honesty in the company, thereby creating a mutual-monitoring effect. Since control instruments can also have a negative impact on truthful reporting if they are poorly designed, companies should ensure that their management control system is holistically designed.

Keywords: Managerial misreporting; management control system; honesty; disclosure; formal and informal controls.


Implications of the Creditors’ Influence on Corporate Decisions

Carsten S. Ruhnke, Leibniz University Hannover (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 7(1), 2022, 150-184

Debt-financing potentially causes frictions in firms, as the creditors represent an additional group of stakeholders creating conflicts of interest with other stakeholders. This raises the question how corporate performance is affected by the presence of creditors. Could it be in the firms’ interest to let the creditors influence corporate decisions? In order to answer these questions, three theoretical models, depicting the influence of creditors on firms in the principal-agent-context, are analyzed, compared and discussed. Based on that, a model that combines and extends their assumptions is developed. The results show that it might be preferable to let the creditors influence the firm’s decisions either permanently or at least in some situations. Also, firms should establish a trustworthy relationship with the creditors in order to minimize the costs due to information asymmetries. Overall, creditors should not be seen as a source of conflict and cost factor but rather as a strategic factor that enables firms to make optimal use of their information and thus, to create a sustainable competitive advantage.

Keywords: Debt contracts; creditor influence; corporate performance; corporate governance; agency theory.

The Effects of Clawback Provisions on Investment Behaviour

Christian Ertel, University of Stuttgart (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 6(4), 2021, 757-789

Clawback provisions are increasingly adopted into corporate compensation systems. So far, various effects on the behavior of managers are identified. Interestingly, unplanned and potentially dysfunctional effects of clawback provisions have been scarcely a topic in accounting research. This study investigates the effects of clawback provisions on investment behavior. In the first part of the study, a formal-analytical model is derived that describes the relationship between clawback provisions and investment behavior. The model is based on prospect theory of Kahnemann/Tversky (1979). In the second part of the study two experiments with 205 participants are described, which were conducted using Amazon Mechanical Turk (MTurk). Consistent with the derived model, the results show that clawback provisions significantly affect investment behavior. The prerequisite for this is that a clawback clause influences the decision problem sufficiently. The study contributes to a better understanding of unplanned and potentially dysfunctional effects of clawback provisions. Moreover, the developed model provides a basis for further research on the topic.

Keywords: Clawback-Klauseln; Investitionsverhalten; Entscheidungsverhalten; Prospect-Theory.

Economics of Hydrogen: Scenario-based Evaluation of the Power-to-Gas Technology

Ubald Bauer, Technical University of Munich (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 5(4), 2020, 532-561

Power-to-gas (PtG) facilities apply the chemical process of water electrolysis to produce hydrogen and represent a low-carbon alternative to conventional hydrogen production methods when coupled with renewable energy sources. This thesis aims to evaluate the economic potential of the PtG technology and explore how policy changes can affect its profitability, measured by the break-even price of hydrogen. For the derivation of the break-even price, I rely on a net present value model that considers cost and revenue components as levelized terms, which I adapt by incorporating energy policy instruments. I develop an algorithm for the investment analysis of PtG projects, which considers both the capacity of the PtG facility and the renewable energy source as variables and optimizes their ratio for profitability. My analysis shows that large-scale PtG facilities can already compete on the market for medium-scale hydrogen supply at a price of 3.55 €/kg. However, profitable operations of small-scale PtG plants still depend on the implementation of policy changes. I find that small systems could produce pure renewable hydrogen at a break-even price below 3.00 €/kg and thus more than halve their costs, if supportive policy measures were adopted.

Keywords: Hydrogen economics; power-to-gas; renewable energy; capacity optimization.

Selbst gemacht ist gut gemacht? Der Einfluss von Self-Service Reporting auf die Qualität von Managemententscheidungen

Volker Stinshoff, Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 5(2), 2020, 223-245

Instrumente des Self-Service Reportings haben das Potenzial datengetriebene Entscheidungsfindung auf allen Ebenen zu ermöglichen oder zu erleichtern. Der Einsatz dieser Technologie wird maßgebliche Veränderungen des Entscheidungsverhaltens mit sich bringen. Bisher existieren wenige wissenschaftliche Erkenntnisse darüber, wie der Einsatz von Self-Service Reporting die Qualität der getroffenen Entscheidungen beeinflusst. Diese Arbeit geht eben jener Frage nach und untersucht die Auswirkungen auf die Qualität sowie die Bereitschaft zum Treffen der Entscheidung in einem Investitionskontext. Es wird ein Experiment mit zwei Gruppen durchgeführt, bei dem die Probanden auf der Basis unterschiedlich präsentierter Informationen eine Auswahl vornehmen müssen. Die Ergebnisse des Experiments zeigen, dass der Einsatz von Self-Service Reporting einen negativen Einfluss auf die Qualität von Entscheidungen hat und zu einer geminderten Entscheidungsbereitschaft führt.

Keywords: Self-Service; Entscheidungsverhalten; Investition; Bias.

Hätte eine Pre-Mortem-Analyse den Tod von eLWIS verhindern können? – Verhaltensorientierte Ansätze für effektives Kostenmanagement in Großprojekten

Sonja Schattevoy, Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf (Bachelor thesis)
Junior Management Science 5(1), 2020, 19-34

Im Juni 2018 gab der Discounter Lidl bekannt, dass er das in Kooperation mit SAP durchgeführte IT-Investitionsprojekt „eLWIS“ mit sofortiger Wirkung einstellen würde. Die bis zu diesem Zeitpunkt angefallenen Kosten betrugen bereits rund 500 Mio. Euro. Damit reiht sich Lidl in eine durchaus beachtliche Liste jener Unternehmen ein, die ein geplantes IT-Großprojekt nicht im vorgesehenen Kosten- und Zeitrahmen abzuwickeln vermochten. Die enorme Verbreitung dieser Problematik über eine Vielzahl von Branchen hinweg gibt Anlass zu einer intensiven Analyse der Erfolgsfaktoren für effektives Kostenmanagement in Großprojekten. Einen vielversprechenden Ansatz stellt in diesem Kontext das verhaltensorientierte Controlling dar, das vor allem Maßnahmen gegen kognitive Fehlleistungen und Könnensdefizite der handelnden Akteure in den Mittelpunkt der Betrachtung rückt. Im Rahmen dieser Arbeit werden ausgewählte kognitive Verzerrungen dargestellt, die im Kontext von Investitionsprojekten zu dysfunktionalem Entscheidungsverhalten führen können. Darauf aufbauend sollen Lösungsmöglichkeiten dargelegt werden, mit deren Hilfe diese Verzerrungen aufgefangen und negative Konsequenzen für das Unternehmen vermieden werden können.

Keywords: Investitionsprojekte; Projektcontrolling; verhaltensorientiertes Controlling; kognitive Verzerrungen.

Bewertung der Übertragbarkeit von neuronalen Studienergebnissen auf einen Accounting-Kontext

Virginia Springer, University of Stuttgart (Bachelor thesis)
Junior Management Science 4(3), 2019, 392-421

Erkenntnisse zu physiologischer und neuronaler Aktivität im Gehirn als grundlegende Auslöser ökonomischer Entscheidungen finden vermehrt Zuspruch in der betriebswirtschaftlichen Forschung. Ein noch junges Forschungsfeld stellt dabei das Neuroaccounting dar, welches zentrale verhaltens- und neurowissenschaftliche Erkenntnisse mit Grundsätzen des Accounting und der Psychologie verknüpft. Das Ziel dieser Arbeit ist, einen umfassenden Überblick über das emergierende Feld des Neuroaccounting zugeben.
Vor diesem Hintergrund wird dargestellt, inwiefern neurowissenschaftliche Erkenntnisse in einem Accounting-Kontext untersucht und übertragen werden und ob aufgrund kontextspezifischer Veränderungen Limitationen bei der Übertragung bestehen können. Hierzu werden die thematischen Zusammenhänge umfassend durch eine systematische Literaturanalyse aufbereitet. Die daraus resultierenden Ergebnisse zeigen, dass in einem Accounting-Kontext weitgehend auf neurowissenschaftliche Erkenntnisse verwiesen werden, welche in einem Nicht-Accounting-Kontext gefunden wurden. Die kritische Betrachtung der Ergebnisse verdeutlicht, dass vor allem stichprobenrelevante Störvariablen sowie kontextspezifische psychologische Effekte zu Limitationen bei der Übertragung führen. Folglich ist eine Kontextabhängigkeit bei der bestehenden Übertragung neurowissenschaftlicher Erkenntnisse auf einen Accounting-Kontext gegeben, welche je nach Studiendesign im Kontext der eigentlichen Untersuchung zu berücksichtigen ist.

Keywords: neuroaccounting; decision making; contextuality; cognitive neuroscience; human brain.

The influence of political regulations and market design on energy storage systems

Maximilian Blaschke, Technical University of Munich (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 3(4), 2018, 114-145

This study examines the profitability of residential storage systems in combination with photovoltaic systems for varying political scenarios and under different market conditions. By comparing the energy flows of a photovoltaic rooftop facility to an average German household’s consumption pattern, this thesis calculates the additional self-consumption that can be achieved through a battery storage system and values the resulting savings via a net present value approach. The simulations of this study identify boundaries for specific political regulations and market environments that can enable battery storage systems to be operated in a profitably way. Based on the assumptions of this thesis, current market conditions do not allow battery storage installations to generate positive returns on investment. Nevertheless, there could be lucrative opportunities in battery storage systems for future electricity price movements and sinking system costs.

Keywords: Battery storage, Solar photovoltaic power, Distributed electricity,
Energy policy, Market regulation

Is the use of management accounting in startups a paradox? – A systematic literature review of how static management accounting practices can support dynamic startups

Nico Boll, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (Bachelor thesis)
Junior Management Science 3(4), 2018, 48-64

This paper uses a systematic literature review to study the antecedents and consequences of management accounting (MA) in startup companies. Most literature focuses on large enterprises because it has generally thought that the adoption of MA is counterproductive in small firms. However, some authors state the contrary as to why we examine the empirical literature on this topic to create a wider base of knowledge. Our results indicate that the entrepreneur’s personal, professional and the firm’s characteristics trigger the timing of adoption ofMA and thereupon show beneficial implications to a startup. Besides the positive impact of venture survival, startups that used management accounting practices such as budgeting, financial planning and cost control achieved higher performance in terms of growth.

Keywords: Management accounting, Systematic literature review, Startups, Entrepreneurship

The Effects of Battery Storage on Risk and Cost of Capital of Wind Park Investments

Lukas Erhard, Technical University of Munich (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 3(3), 2018, 74-105

To reach the defined reduction goals for green house gas emissions, an increasing share of renewables and especially wind power is necessary. However, these generation technologies are intermittent and progressively exposed to market risks as a consequence of declining financial support in the future. To reduce revenue volatility, in this thesis, a wind farm is combined with a battery storage. The study emphasizes the battery’s effect on the investment risk and the accompanying cost of capital. In order to assess this effect, I develop a deterministic optimization model based on historic wind farm and market price data in order to maximize cash flows. Monte Carlo scenarios are generated to evaluate the impact on risk by using the Value-at-Risk as risk criterion. I find that batteries can indeed reduce revenue risk in a case without subsidies. Furthermore, the link to cost of capital is made. The latter, as well as the battery prices, need to be reduced by a certain amount to make the application of a battery economically reasonable.

Keywords: Renewable energy, Energy markets, Battery storage, Wind investment, Energy investment risk

The Impact of the Gig-Economy on U.S. Labor Markets: Understanding the Role of Non-Employer Firms using Econometric Models and the Example of Uber

Fabien Rozzi, Technical University of Munich (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 3(2), 2018, 33-56

In this work, I provide quantitative responses to the questions of how the size and the growth of the gig-economy can be measured and how labor markets respond to the exposure to online platforms using data on non-employer firms from the U.S. Census Bureau and on the staggered market entry of Uber in different U.S. metropolitan areas. I find that non-employer firms experienced a growth by 60% between 1999 and 2014 adding almost 9 million non-employer firms to the U.S. economy. I show that non-employer firms are tightly linked to the rise of independent work and are highly effected by the emergence of online platforms. Uber triggers an increase of 20 percentage points in non-employer firms relative to employment in the transportation sector 4 years after entering local labor markets. Furthermore, Uber’s market entry is associated with a 0.05 – 0.07 increase in non-employer share in the transportation sector. I demonstrate that the growth of non-employer firms between 2005 and 2014 is correlated with the growth in alternative work arrangements measured at the industry and state level by Katz and Krueger. I find that the rise of non-employer firms is not mechanically driven by differential industry or regional growth and that the number of gig-economy workers are at highest where unemployment is at highest. My results highlight the impact of the gig-economy on labor markets and provide evidence that the use of non-employer firms is relevant for measuring the gig-economy.

Keywords: Gig-Economy, Online Platform Economy, Labor Market, Non-Employer Firms, Uber

Integrated information systems: The influence on process performance in management accounting

Alexander Deneke, WHU – Otto Beisheim School of Management (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 3(1), 2018, 123-159

The main argument within management accounting for why integrated information systems create value has been that they increase process efficiency. However, the implementation of more sophisticated information systems also changes the relationship between the manager and the management accountant. The aim of this thesis is to determine if improved relationship quality between the manager and the management accountant is one mechanism by which integrated information systems improve the process performance in management accounting. I used structural equation modeling for a sample of 406 valid respondents consisting of management accountants from various industries. The analysis shows that integrated information systems indeed also create value through a better relationship quality between the manager and the management accountant.

Keywords: Integrated information systems, Management accounting, Process performance, Structural equation modelling

The impact of tax differentials on pre-tax income of Swiss MNEs

Rafael Daniel Schlatter, University of Zurich (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 3(1), 2018, 88-122

Multinational enterprises may use income shifting techniques such as strategic transfer pricing and debt shifting to reduce their global tax burden. Due to comparably low corporate taxation, Switzerland is presumably a suitable location for tax planning strategies. The thesis at hand examines income shifting among multinational enterprises headquartered in Switzerland in a quantitative manner and provides indirect evidence of income shifting. Using a large panel dataset of foreign subsidiaries of Swiss parent firms and employing a fixed-effects regression approach, the estimated semi-elasticity of pre-tax income with respect to the statutory tax rate differential between the parent firm and the subsidiary is -1.458. This estimate is highly significant and larger than the estimates in comparable papers using European samples. Additionally, this thesis shows that income shifting activities between the parent firm and the subsidiary increase with the parent’s ownership share in the subsidiary and the firm size of the subsidiary. Hence, Swiss multinational

Keywords: Income shifting, tax planning, Swiss multinationals, semi-elasticity, tax differential

Einfluss von Commitment und Affekten auf das Investitionsverhalten in Projekten

Fabian Müller, University of Stuttgart (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 2(3), 2017, 11-47

Eine Vielzahl von Determinanten beeinflussen die rationale Entscheidungsfindung von Projektmanagern. Entscheider neigen unter anderem dazu, mehr in ein laufendes Projekt zu investieren, das durch eine negative Entwicklung – zum Beispiel Verzögerungen – gekennzeichnet ist und in dem der Entscheider die Projektinitiierung zu verantworten hat. Dieses Phänomen wird im verhaltensorientierten Controlling auch als Escalation of Commitment beschrieben. Im Gegensatz dazu vermeiden es Entscheider, erst gar nicht in ein Projekt zu investieren, das interpersonelle Konflikt vermuten lässt. Dieses Verhalten ist auch dann stark ausgeprägt, wenn aus der Umsetzung des Projekts ein positiver Erwartungswert resultieren würde. Unklar ist allerdings, wie die so ausgelösten negativen Affekte in bereits laufenden Projekten auf Investitionsentscheidungen wirken.
In dieser Studie wird mithilfe eines Online-Experiments mit 186 Teilnehmern untersucht, welchen Einfluss negative Affekte, unter Berücksichtigung des Commitments zur Projektdurchführung, auf das Investitionsverhalten haben. Die Ergebnisse zeigen, dass Individuen in einem laufenden Projekt, unter dem Einfluss von negativen Affekten, signifikant niedrigere Investitionen zur Projektfinanzierung bereitstellen als solche, die nicht unter dem Einfluss von negativen Affekten stehen. Dieser Effekt verstärkt sich, wenn Individuen die Projektinitiierung nicht zu verantworten haben. Die Ergebnisse erweitern die Eskalationsforschung dahingehend, als dass unter negativen Affekten ein gegenläufiges Investitionsverhalten gezeigt werden kann. Für Projekte, die sich verzögern und in welchen negative Affekte wirken, bedeutet dies, dass ein reduziertes Investitionsverhalten zu erwarten ist. Daher ist es von hoher Bedeutung interpersonellen Konflikten entgegenzuwirken, sodass notwendige Investitionen nicht vernachlässigt werden und die Projektrealisierung zielgerichtet fortgeführt wird.

Keywords: Escalation of Commitment, Affekt, Emotion, Investitionsverhalten

Potenziale von Batteriespeichersystemen zur Regelenergiebereitstellung

Johannes Weindl, Technical University of Munich (Bachelor thesis)
Junior Management Science 1(1), 2016, 275-300

Die Energiewirtschaft befindet sich zur Zeit in einem Umbruch. Der wachsende Anteil der fluktuierenden Stromproduktion von Erneuerbaren Energien und die zunehmende Verdrängung konventioneller Kraftwerke gefährdet die Stabilität des Stromnetzes. Deshalb müssen neue Lösungen zur Sicherstellung einer verlässlichen Energieversorgung gefunden werden. Batteriespeichersysteme können ein bedeutender Baustein für den Erfolg dieser Energiewende sein. Vom technischen Standpunkt sind sie besonders dazu geeignet Primärregelleistung bereitzustellen. Folglich wird das entsprechende Geschäftsmodell durch eine Kapitalwertberechnung für ein fiktives Lithium-Ionen und ein Bleisäure Batteriespeichersystem, basierend auf Marktdaten und neu eingeführten Vorschriften, untersucht. Leider verhindern die gegenwärtigen Marktbedingungen in Deutschland einen profitablen Betrieb beider Speichertechnologien, wobei das Bleisäure Batteriespeichersystem ein vielversprechenderes Ergebnis liefert.

Keywords: Batteriespeicher, Energiewende, Primärregelleistung, Regelenergie, Wirtschaftlichkeit