Technology, innovation and entrepreneurship

Managing Customer Success: An Evolutionary Process Model for Role Development in SaaS Entrepreneurial Ventures

Lennart Jayasuriya, Technical University of Munich (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 8(3), 2023, 591-616

In an increasingly SaaS-driven, competitive entrepreneurial ecosystem, retaining customers has become a key challenge to solve for entrepreneurial ventures. Customer success management provides a possible response to this challenge, looking to build a close relationship with customers to ensure a maximum value-added through the sold software solution. This thesis conducts inductive qualitative research based on eight German SaaS entrepreneurial ventures. It showcases the evolution of the customer success management role in three phases from a 360° support towards a trusted advisor. Over three phases, task change from an operational to a more strategic focus, which is connected to changes in the internal collaboration. The results suggest a strong individual impulse to be a necessary condition for customer success management to emerge and evolve. Furthermore, the role development is accompanied by a perspective shift of the own entrepreneurial venture and a continuously iterating definition of customer success. The findings of this thesis highlight important challenges over the course of establishing a customer success management department in an entrepreneurial venture looking to provide theoretical groundwork for future research as well as start-ups investigating the topic.

Keywords: Customer success management; Entrepreneurial ventures; Process model; SaaS; Grounded theory.

A Techno-Economic Analysis of Space-Based Solar Power Systems

Benedikt Kruft, Technische Universität München (Masterarbeit)
Junior Management Science 8(3), 2023, 732-771

Space-based solar power (SBSP) promises to provide flexible renewable baseload power. However, no full-system prototype exists due to a perceived lack of economic viability. The goal of this thesis is therefore to determine how different technology approaches can improve key technical metrics of SBSP and consequently the economics. For this purpose, we divide the system into its three main segments and define critical metrics for the performance of each subsystem. Based on these, novel technology approaches from the literature are then evaluated. For the solar satellite, we are able to show that a number of technology options exist that might improve power levels, radiation resistance, and mass-related ratios. These advances would greatly benefit overall system economics, as the space segment constitutes a big lever for enhancing the levelised cost of electricity (LCOE). Furthermore, microwave power beaming efficiencies in line with required levels have been demonstrated but so far lack the scale and distance necessary for SBSP. Ultimately, the global capacity in space lift capabilities appears to be a major bottleneck. Consequently, a reduction in mass of the satellite would not only be a matter of economics but might render any such project even possible in the first place.

Keywords: Energy; Solar; Space; Microwaves; Sustainability.

Turning German Steel Production Green: Quantifying Diffusion Scenarios for Hydrogen-Based Steelmaking and Policy Implications

Philipp Preis, Technische Universität München (Masterarbeit)
Junior Management Science 8(3), 2023, 682-716

The German steel industry is in jeopardy. Current steel production must be comprehensively transformed to achieve the emission targets imposed by the Federal Climate Change Act. A promising alternative that has increasingly gained momentum in recent years is hydrogen-based steel production. This thesis analyzes the potential of this method to transform the German steel industry. First, drivers that will decisively influence the future role of hydrogen-based steelmaking are identified. Subsequently, these drivers are linked in a quantitative model to develop explorative diffusion scenarios and to draw conclusions for policymaking. Four representative scenarios are extracted and analyzed. Large differences between the scenario outputs illustrate that the diffusion of hydrogen-based steelmaking is subject to significant uncertainties. It becomes clear that the most effective lever for promoting the attractiveness of hydrogen-based steelmaking is increasing the cost of conventional production by exposing it to CO2 prices. However, such exposure simultaneously suggests disadvantages towards producers that are not subject to this regulation. To mitigate the emerging risk of carbon leakage effects, suitable policy measures are required.

Keywords: Green steel; Green hydrogen; Energy transition; Energy policy.

Innovation Performance of Family and Founder Firms: Empirical Evidence from German Listed Companies

Simon Mueller, Goethe-Universität Frankfurt am Main (Masterarbeit)
Junior Management Science 8(2), 2023, 333-357

Based on the agency perspective and the resource-based view of the firm, this study explores the impact of lone founder and family influence on innovation input and innovation output. By separating the lone founder and family effect into ownership, management, and governance influence dimensions, we analyze a panel data set of 165 German listed companies from 2013 through 2017. We first investigate R&D intensity in lone founder and family firms versus other firms by using investments in research and development as a measure for innovation input. Secondly, we apply a negative binomial regression model to analyze R&D productivity within the three types of firms by proxying innovation output with the filed number of granted patents within a certain year. According to the results, we mainly find that founder firms superiorly invest in innovation and strengthen their competitive position in the market through their entrepreneurial orientation. Family firms, on the other hand, might weaken future growth potential as they invest less in R&D and are not able to convert this lower input in superior innovation output.

Keywords: Lone founder firms; Family firms; Innovation performance; R&D intensity; R&D productivity.

Winning when Going Global – On the Role of Heritage and Strategic Moves for Internationalization Endeavors of Start-ups

Radu-Andrei Maldea, Ruhr-Universität Bochum (Masterarbeit)
Junior Management Science 8(2), 2023, 532-568

As the chief subjects for global progress, international new ventures (INVs) are gaining worldwide economic importance at an increasing pace. Most recently, they have received growing attention in the research literature because the validity of existing internationalization theories for has been questioned when used in a new venture setting. So far, prior literature has focused on understanding INV characteristics and the effect that their properties have on the internationalization performance. Aiming to develop a new framework for start-up internationalization, this thesis combines results from a quantitative study on the Strategic Moves of early internationalizing start-ups with results from a literature review on the Heritage of these new ventures. Within the study researching the Strategic Moves, data from 51 European start-ups show the optimal moves start-ups can undertake. The complementary literature review, based on 45 papers from the INV research field, shows what characteristics the ideal Heritage of an INV should consist of. Taken together, the findings construct the Startup Internationalization Framework which establishes the first holistic perspective on start-up internationalization.

Keywords: International new ventures; Early internationalizing start-ups; Internationalization strategy; Market entry; Global management.

Do birds of a feather always flock together? A multidimensional examination of homophily in crowdfunding

Markus Klepsch, Technische Universität München (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 8(1), 2023, 237-269

Homophily—the tendency of individuals to associate with similar others—is one of the most persistent findings in research on interpersonal interaction. Literature has recently also studied the impact of homophily in crowdfunding markets (Greenberg & Mollick, 2017). While these results offer valuable insights into the dimension sex, homophily is a multidimensional con-struct in theory (McPherson, Smith-Lovin, & Cook, 2001). Therefore, I employ homophily theorizing by analyzing to what extent homophily influences backers‘ choices in crowdfunding regarding five different sociodemographic dimensions. To test my hypotheses, I drew upon a unique dataset of roughly 3.5 million backings made on the crowdfunding platform Indie-gogo. My results suggest that individuals make homophilic choices with respect to age, sex, occupation, and location. While my findings thus confirm that, in large, homophily plays an essential role in individual choices, I extend the literature by showing that it is not always as clear-cut. The more complex the dimension, the more difficult it is to judge. Specifically, I show that in the dimension race, where a plethora of possible combinations leads to a certain degree of complexity, there is no simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer to whether homophily influences the decision. Instead, significant differences can be observed depending on the specific race under consideration.

Keywords: Crowdfunding; Indiegogo; Homophily.


From investor to entrepreneur – An explorative study of the entrepreneurial behaviour of investor-entrepreneurs

Moritz Setzer, Technische Universität München (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 8(1), 2023, 43-67

Research on entrepreneurial types argues that differences in decisions and actions of novice and habitual entrepreneurs can be attributed to prior experience and social ties. However, other forms of resource acquisition than business ownership experience are neglected in previous studies. This study investigates this research gap by exploring the entrepreneurial behavior of novice investor-entrepreneurs, first-time founders who have previously worked in venture capital or private equity. Drawing on a cross-sectional approach with 13 semi-structured interviews, this paper investigates whether investorentrepreneurs have already acquired the necessary resources relevant for new venture foundations in their role as investors. This study reveals that investor-entrepreneurs differ from other first-time entrepreneurs in several aspects. It shows that the differences can mainly be attributed to skills and knowledge already acquired through the job as an investor. In fact, venture capital experience seems to be more helpful for a venture’s early foundation than private equity experience. The study discusses the implications of these findings for the literature on entrepreneurial types and their differentiation, thereby challenging existing differentiation and classification approaches.

Keywords: Investor-entrepreneur; Entrepreneurial types; Novice; Habitual.


Rethinking digital governance – How collaborative innovation strategies advance the development of digital innovations in public organisations

Laura John, University of Münster (Bachelor thesis)
Junior Management Science 7(5), 2022, 1400-1418

Digital innovations bear the potential to increase the efficiency and transparency of governments and create more accessible and user-centric public services. However, public organisations are facing several challenges in the development of digital innovations and the unique democratic requirements imply that digital services cannot simply be procured from private contractors. Hence, a new strategy called collaborative innovation appears to be a possible solution, but few institutional designs have been found to sustain collaborative innovation in the present governance system. Therefore, this thesis investigates the unexplored phenomenon of innovation fellowship programmes by conducting a diagnostic case study about Tech4Germany with a focus on the research question: How does the fellowship programme Tech4Germany contribute to the development of digital innovations in German public sector organisations? Interviews with participants of Tech4Germany revealed that fellowship programmes are a suitable institutional design for collaborative innovation as they create an attractive setting for tech experts and provide public employees a unique room to experience agile and user-centric approaches. In particular, mutual learning is stimulated, and the implementation resistance reduced.

Keywords: Collaborative innovation; Fellowship programmes; Public innovation; Digital transformation.


Battle of Realities – a Qualitative-Empirical Analysis of the Use of Augmented and Virtual Reality in Sales

Daniel Schachtsieck, Ruhr University Bochum (Bachelor thesis)
Junior Management Science 7(5), 2022, 1361-1374

Many companies are unaware of the possible uses of augmented reality and virtual reality and the resulting potential. Current research also shows large gaps in this area. The aim of this work is to develop a decision-making aid for their use in sales. In addition, a general understanding of the application of both technologies in sales is to be created and specific potentials are to be revealed by analyzing them against the background of selected criteria in different sales areas. For this purpose, a qualitative empiricism is carried out in the form of expert interviews. Finally, implications for practice are derived in an assignment matrix with application examples. This paper shows that companies are already successfully using the technologies in different sales areas and that salespeople are aware of their added value. The use of the technologies will increase, as will the user acceptance of the customers, due to the progressing generational change. By combining theoretical basics with expert knowledge from practice, the work expands the level of knowledge about the use of augmented reality and virtual reality in sales.

Keywords: Augmented reality; Virtual reality; Digitalization.


The Effect of Micro-Entrepreneurship on Migration Plans of Young Adults in Rural Sub-Saharan Africa and the Mediating Role of Subjective and Economic Well-Being

Christian Stöhr, Technical University of Munich (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 7(5), 2022, 1326-1360

Entrepreneurship can make a valuable contribution to global poverty reduction. However, poverty is often narrowly defined in terms of income and gross domestic product. Thus, a deep understanding of the impact of entrepreneurship on the development of the Global South cannot be obtained. To address this issue and uncover the transformative potential of entrepreneurship, this paper proposes a model in which both economic and subjective well-being mediate the relationship between micro-entrepreneurship and migration plans of young adults in rural sub-Saharan Africa. The results provide tentative evidence of a negative impact of micro-entrepreneurship on migration plans. Further, it is shown that subjective well-being explains part of the negative association between micro-entrepreneurship and migration plans. While those results hold for entrepreneurs in low-income countries and agricultural entrepreneurs, no evidence is found for entrepreneurs in middle/high-income countries and non-farm entrepreneurs. Contrary to expectations, the mediating role of economic well-being is not significant for either the entire group of micro-entrepreneurs or its subgroups. Finally, economic and subjective well-being as measures of poverty alleviation are found to be positively correlated.

Keywords: Entrepreneurship; Migration; Subjective well-being; Sub-saharan africa.


How Can Fairness Tools Impact the Understanding of Fairness and the Processes Within a Machine Learning Development Team?

Cosima Friedle, London School of Economics and Political Science (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 7(5), 2022, 1289-1300

Over the last years, a wide spread of Machine Learning in increasingly more, especially sensitive areas like criminal justice or healthcare has been observed. Popular cases of algorithmic bias illustrate the potential of Machine Learning to reproduce and reinforce biases present in the analogous world and thus lead to discrimination. The realisation of this potential has led to the creation of the research stream on fair, accountable and transparent Machine Learning. One aspect of this research field is the development of fairness tools, algorithmic toolkits that aim to assist developers of Machine Learning in identifying and eliminating bias in their models and thus ensuring fairness. The literature review on fairness tools has revealed a research gap in the impact of these on the understanding of fairness and the processes within a development team. Thus, the aim of this research was to investigate the impact that fairness tools can have on the notion of fairness and the processes in a development team. Therefore, a case study with a development team of a large, globally operating corporation has been conducted. Applying Kallinikos´ theory of technology as a regulative regime and Oudshoorn and Pinch´s idea of the co-construction of users and technologies on the empirical findings revealed two important conclusions. Firstly, it shows that fairness tools act as regulative regimes by shaping the understanding of fairness and the processes within a development team. Secondly, this character of fairness tools as regulative regimes needs to be understood as part of the coconstruction process between the technology and the developer.

Keywords: Machine learning; Fairness; Fairness tools; Regulative regime of technology; Co-construction of user and technology.


Convincing investors: A study of personal, adapted storytelling and strategic behavior in entrepreneurial fundraising

Pauline Tilla Rittstieg, Technical University of Munich (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 7(5), 2022, 1193-1223

This inductive study explores the process, through which legitimacy is established for financial resource acquisition, by analyzing the accounts of 15 entrepreneurs on their storytelling and fundraising strategies. The findings show that consistent personal storytelling, venture story adaptation, and strategic behavior increase a venture’s chances of receiving financial investments. Taking an entrepreneur-centric perspective in analyzing the practical implementation of cultural entrepreneurship theory, the findings have strong theoretical implications. They suggest extending the model of cultural entrepreneurship to include entrepreneurs’ behavior throughout the resource acquisition process. They further contradict the theory that a venture’s legitimacy only depends on its existing resources, suggesting that it is also based on the venture’s founder’s storytelling skills and behavior. As for practical implications, the findings show that investment decisions are not purely fact-based but influenced by investors’ emotional involvement and the hype around the venture among investors, which are both a consequence of skillful storytelling and strategic behavior. The study illustrates several effective storytelling and fundraising strategies, providing practical examples for each.

Keywords: Venture legitimacy; Fundraising; Fundraising strategy; Storytelling; Cultural entrepreneurship.


Digital Innovation in Corporations: Deriving a Practical Framework for the Measurement of Success of Digital Innovation Units

Marcel Schemmel, Technical University of Munich (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 7(4), 2022, 1098-1132

Confronted with entirely new challenges resulting from digital technologies, established corporations increasingly set up dedicated digital innovation units (DIUs) to foster digital innovation and to explore opportunities for the digital future. Although DIUs recently face criticism with regards to their performance and impact on the core organization, literature lacks in suitable approaches to assess the success of DIUs. Therefore, we derive a practical framework for the measurement of success of DIUs in the course of this research project. We develop this framework by identifying critical success factors (CSFs) and key performance indicators (KPIs). Subsequently, we merge our results with existing literature. To determine these CSFs and KPIs, we designed an explorative, qualitative-empirical case study research approach. The research design is based on a mixed-method approach that combines semi-structured interviews as core component with a supplementary survey. Conducting nine cross-industry case studies, we identified 16 CSFs and 38 objective related KPIs. Thus, the framework derived in this thesis contributes to practice and literature by addressing the existing gap in DIU and performance measurement research.

Keywords: Digital innovation units; performance measurement; critical success factors; key performance indicators; qualitative case studies.

Demand Estimation for Solar Photovoltaics in the United States – An Instrumental Variable Approach

Veronique Clara Bukow, Technical University of Munich (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 7(3), 2022, 643-667

Worldwide the demand for solar photovoltaics (PV) has increased significantly over the past decades. This was driven by a price reduction for solar PV systems. A two-stage least squares linear regression yields insights into the price sensitivity for residential customers in the U.S., and California in particular. The specification includes instrumental variables as well as fixed effects to account for the common issues of endogeneity and data heterogeneity in demand estimation problems, respectively. The variation in the sales tax rate on solar PV and the movements of polysilicon spot prices are used to instrumentalise PV price changes. The regression results imply an inelastic demand with a long-term price elasticity of -0.443, accounting for differences over state and time. Investigating price elasticities for various income groups shows that lower-income customers react more strongly to price changes compared to those with relatively high income (-0.521 vs. -0.195). Likewise, regions with lower population density are more sensitive to price changes (-0.473 vs. -0.338). Besides price, installation costs and technological efficiency majorly impact the system size installed. Results of this study can provide data-driven guidance to efficient policy design and pricing strategies.

Keywords: Price elasticity; solar photovoltaic; instrumental variables; demand estimation.

Unraveling the Process of Knowledge Integration in Agile Product Development Teams

Julia Haselsteiner, Johannes Kepler University Linz (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 7(2), 2022, 354-389

Agile product development seems to be the solution for many companies to drive innovation and shorten time-to-market, but what mechanisms lie behind the promises of faster development times and more innovative products? Defined as locus of innovation and driver of dynamic performance, the concept of cross-functional knowledge integration and the organizational learning literature have the potential to provide answers here. Recent empirical studies imply that knowledge integration happens on multiple levels that influence each other, and that environmental uncertainty leads to changes in the knowledge integration process. However, the interplay of individual-level and group-level knowledge integration has not yet received adequate attention and prior studies do not show how knowledge integration changes over shorter periods of time. This paper takes a grounded theory approach to explore the knowledge integrating mechanisms in two agile product development teams. The resulting iterative process model shows how agile teams integrate diverse contributions of individual team members into a new product, how internal and external factors trigger alterations in knowledge integration practices, and how agile teams adapt to changes in coordination and collaboration demands.

Keywords: Agile product development; knowledge integration; cross-functional teams; organizational learning.

The Hidden Influence of Cognitive Processing Style on Consumers’ Intention to Adopt Innovative Products

Vanessa Isabel Paape, RWTH Aachen University (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 7(1), 2022, 112-133

It is a central aim of Product Innovation Management to find the factors that influence consumers’ decision to adopt innovations. In this quantitative, empirical thesis, I illuminate a new, irrational side of consumers’ intention to adopt product innovations by drawing on Novelty Categorization Theory. I analyse the research question: Does the situational, dichotomous and cognitive factor processing style (global vs. local processing) (i) affect consumers’ intention to adopt innovations and does the effect (ii) vary depending on different levels of consumers’ personal predisposition to resist innovations? I recruit participants from the crowdsourcing platform Amazon Mechanical Turk (MTurk) and test the effects by means of multivariate, linear regression analysis. With this thesis I contribute to theory by altering the Innovation Decision Model and contribute to practice by uncovering a factor that can be utilized for the invention of new marketing instruments.

Keywords: Product innovation management; innovation resistance; local and global processing; consumer behavior; innovation decision model.

What Drives the B2B Platform Economy? A Qualitative Examination of Current Trends, Success Factors, and the Road Ahead

Inga Stange, Technische Universität Berlin (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 7(1), 2022, 1-31

Over the past decade, digital platforms have disrupted traditional industries, causing markets to shift and established companies to rethink their business models. While this mainly applied to consumer-oriented sectors so far, it is now assumed that business-to-business (B2B) industries will be the next to join this major transformation wave. From an information system perspective, this study examines which characteristics and modes of operation are responsible for a B2B platform to succeed. By making use of a multiple-case study, drawing on semi-structured interviews with decision-makers from German B2B platform initiatives, and a descriptive report of its current landscape, the paper provides a holistic overview of the multitude of influencing factors on the design of a B2B platform as well as its drivers and barriers. The study contributes to existing literature by consolidating the fragmented state of research and conceptualizing platform considerations into three stages of platform evolution. Its findings suggest that B2B platforms are subject to different mechanisms than their consumer-oriented counterparts and advises platforms to position at the interface of the digital and traditional world by being simultaneously collaborative, simple, scalable, secure, and trusted.

Keywords: Platform economy; B2B platforms; two-sided business models; digital platforms.

Is Visiting the ESB Website Deteriorating the Air Quality of our Countries? A Statistical Analysis of the Relationship Between Air Pollution Levels and Information & Communication Technologies

Katharina Isabella Kühn, ESB Business School Reutlingen (Bachelor thesis)
Junior Management Science 6(4), 2021, 839-851

Information and communication technology (ICT) is often praised for reducing emissions, however, data centres enabling these
technologies have a high energy demand which produces emissions due to CO2-intensive energy production. The purpose of
this paper is to investigate whether a relationship between ICT categories and air quality exists and how ICT affects it. This
will contribute to a greater understanding of how to mitigate the effect of the rise of new digital technologies.
This paper examines the effects of ICT aspects (Knowledge, Technology, Future Readiness) on air quality in 57 countries by
using multilinear regression. The results show that a linear relationship between ICT factors and air quality exists. Technology
has a negative effect on air quality, whereas Future Readiness has a positive effect. The effect of Future Readiness on air
quality is almost twice as high compared to Technology. A relationship between Knowledge and air quality, as proposed in
the literature, could not be proven by the model. It can be concluded that this combination of findings provides some support
for the conceptual premise that the net effect of ICT on air quality might be positive and that the share of the total carbon
footprint of the ICT sector might have been forecasted too high.

Keywords: Information technology; air quality; energy consumption; sustainability.

The M&A Behavior of Family Firms

Jinhao Shu, WHU – Otto Beisheim School of Management (Bachelor thesis)
Junior Management Science 6(4), 2021, 673-699

The present study aims to identify the driving acquisition goals of family firms’ acquisitions and analyse the role of innovation
in these acquisitions. Therefore, the study deploys a qualitative approach investigating 15 German family firms to derive
patterns within the qualitative data. As a result, the study proposes 14 propositions, which mainly suggest a co-existence of
multiple goals in acquisitions. Similarly, the propositions argue that the goals related to the categories of expansion, market
competitiveness and innovation are decisively driving the acquisitions undertaken by family firms. The study further proposes
that the acquisition of innovation is a critical key to the success of family firms and a means to an end for achieving other
related goals such as the survival of family firms. Beyond getting a broader understanding of the acquisitions made by family
firms, the study shows further avenues for research in the field of family firms’ M&A activities.

Keywords: Family Firm; Innovation; Mergers & Acquisitions; Drivers of Mergers & Acquisitions; Acquisitions Motives; Acquisition Goals; Innovation in Mergers & Acquisitions.

The Impact of Community Involvement on Game Life-Cycle: Evidence based on Gaming Platform Steam

Tim Leonard Hermes, Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich (Bachelor thesis)
Junior Management Science 6(3), 2021, 547-567

Later stages of the product life-cycle are characterized by diminishing sales and declining prices. Especially firms with substantial product development costs, as is the case in the video game industry, are dependent on long product life-cycles to amortize initial costs. This confronts firms with the fundamental challenge of maintaining the value of their product from the consumer’s perspective and thus delaying the natural price decline. We investigate whether product features that facilitate community involvement and interaction are an effective means to keep the product stimulating and relevant in the long run. Using extensive data from the PC video game market, we show that the inclusion of interactive, community-engaging features allows firms to both charge higher prices and delay the natural price decline of their product. However, for one of the investigated features we find the opposite effect, which we explain by subsequent analysis. Thereby, we gain valuable insights into the importance of robustly designed incentive systems in community-focused features. Our findings could help firms in their efforts to design attractive and economically viable products with prolonged life-cycles.

Keywords: Product life-cycle; digital goods pricing; user communities; co-creation; digital gaming platforms.

Coping with Sales Pressure – A Literature-based Analysis of Strategies for Coping with Stress in Sales

Vanessa Heinzel, Ruhr University Bochum (Bachelor thesis)
Junior Management Science 6(2), 2021, 279-298

Although the stress level of employees has increased by 20% in recent years, the topic of stress receives little attention in marketing and sales research. Based on Lazarus’ Transactional Stress Model, this paper identifies causes and consequences of stress in sales and examines the effectiveness of different coping strategies for stress. Results show that role conflict and ambiguity cause stress. Stress has negative effects on job satisfaction, performance, and commitment of a salesperson. In terms of coping with stress, problem-focused coping strategies are more suitable than emotion-focused strategies because they help to actively control stressful situations. The results offer managers two options to avoid the consequences of stress: Addressing causes and fostering characteristics that increase the use of problem-focused coping strategies, such as an employee’s self-efficacy expectancy. Future research should examine additional factors influencing coping strategy choice, such as work environment, and effects of this choice on mental and physical health.

Keywords: Stress; Coping; Sales.

The Reciprocal Connection Between Identity and Consumption: A Literature Review

Benjamin Sassonko, University of Augsburg (Bachelor thesis)
Junior Management Science 5(2), 2020, 246-261

Consumer identity has been an integral part of marketing and psychology research for decades, resulting in an extensive stream of literature. The main purpose of this paper is twofold: First, to accentuate the reciprocity between identity and consumption, a relationship that has been insufficiently addressed in marketing literature. Second, the core papers in this field are reviewed to propose an overarching framework for grouping past and future research. The paper identifies three fundamental concepts that are at the core of the framework: (1) Identity Construction: the process of mentally forming one’s identities that constitute the self-concept; (2) Self-Expression Through Consumption: conscious and strategic consumption decisions for identity-expression; and (3) Identity-Effects on Judgments: static effects of chronically salient identities and dynamic effects of primed identities on decisions. This framework will help identify potential avenues for future research.

Keywords: Identity consumption reciprocity; Consumer behavior; Consumer identity; Consumer identity literature review.

Value Co-Creation: Eine Analyse von Treibern und Gestaltungsansätzen für B2B- vs. B2C-Kunden

Felix Konstantin Steinhardt, Free University of Berlin (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 5(1), 2020, 81-117

Value Co-Creation (CC) wird eine hohe Bedeutung zugesprochen, da sie ermöglicht, Kunden aktiv in die Wertschöpfung von Unternehmen einzubeziehen und so neue Produkte und Dienstleistungen zu kreieren, die optimal auf Bedürfnisse abgestimmt sind. In dieser Arbeit werden Beweggründe bzw. Treiber für die CC-Teilnahme aus Kundensicht identifiziert. Dies geschieht anhand exemplarischer Szenarien mit quantitativen Auswertungen. Hierbei wird erstmalig auf Gemeinsamkeiten und Unterschiede der Bedeutung der Treiber von CC bei business-to-business-Kunden (Geschäftskunden) vs. business-to-consumer-Kunden (Privatkunden) im direkten Vergleich eingegangen.Was bewegt die Kunden dazu, sich an anbieterinitiierten CC-Aktivitäten zu beteiligen?Wie unterscheidet sich die Bedeutung dieser Treiber für beide Kundentypen B2B vs. B2C im Detail? Bei B2B-Kunden werden hierfür zwei Betrachtungsebenen unterschieden: die organisationale, strategische Ebene des gesamten Unternehmens („firm-level“) und die individuelle Perspektive der Mitarbeiter eines Unternehmens, welches Geschäftskunde ist („individuallevel“). Zusäzlich werden praktische Gestaltungsansätze für CC diskutiert. Die Ergebnisse tragen zum tieferen CC-Verständnis bei und geben dabei Anhaltspunkte für die Initiierung von CC-Projekten.

Keywords: Co-Creation; Customer Engagement; B2B-Treiber; B2C-Treiber; Kundenmanagement.

Die Legitimation einer Innovation durch Cultural Entrepreneurship – Explorative Fallstudie eines symbiotischen Zusammenspiels zwischen einem Start-up und dessen Schlüsselkunden

Leona Schink, Leuphana University Lüneburg (Bachelor thesis)
Junior Management Science 4(3), 2019, 433-459

Die „Cultural Entrepreneurship“ Literatur untersucht wie Start-ups die „Liability of newness“ durch kulturelle Überzeugungsleistungen überwinden, wobei meist Entrepreneure in der aktiven und die Bezugsgruppen (z.B. InvestorInnen) in der passiven Empfängerrolle gesehen werden. Die Fallstudie eines vom Start-up Tonio und dessen B-to-B Schlüsselkunden Turner Broadcasting System (TBS) durchgeführten und auf Tonios innovativer Technologie basierenden Pilotprojektes untersucht, wie Tonio sich bei TBS legitimiert und vor allem, wie interne Dynamiken innerhalb des Schlüsselkunden den Legitimationsprozess beeinflussen. Eine qualitative Inhaltsanalyse von Leitfadeninterviews, unternehmensinternen Dokumenten sowie frei zugänglichen Medienartikeln legt offen, dass sowohl Tonio, als auch interne Allianzpartner innerhalb von TBS in einer symbiotischen Zusammenarbeit aktiv für die Legitimation der innovativen Technologie gezielte kulturelle Überzeugungsarbeit leisten. So nutzt TBS bei der an interne Stakeholder gerichteten Überzeugungsarbeit beispielsweise Identitätsmechanismen, wie symbolische Handlungen, Narrative und Analogien, die in der vorherigen Phase ebenso von Tonio genutzt wurden, um TBS als Kunden zu gewinnen. Anschließend übernimmt Tonio Legitimationsarbeit von TBS zur Akquise neuer Kunden. Mit diesen Ergebnissen trägt diese Studie zum Verständnis von Innovationsprojekten als über Organisationsgrenzen hinweg fungierende Symbiosen bei.

Keywords: cultural entrepreneurship; legitimacy; new ventures.

The Influence of Cryptocurrencies on Enterprise Risk Management – an Empirical Evidence by the Example of Bitcoin

Maximilian Bölstler, University of St.Gallen (Bachelor thesis)
Junior Management Science 4(2), 2019, 195-227

This thesis analyzes the influence of cryptocurrencies in the context of risk management by considering the emerging risk
factors of Bitcoin as a payment method. By means of an empirical analysis through an online survey, the current operational
dealing of incoming Bitcoin funds, the risk awareness of the potential threats, and the corresponding control activities
implemented by companies accepting Bitcoin payments have been examined. The results reveal that the risks of this new
technology-based payment method have not been extensively evaluated and that there exists a partially significant lack of
know-how. Therefore, the risks are either not at all or improperly addressed by a majority of the organizations. However,
the exchange rate risk and the cyber risk, which is a strongly linked to the administration of cryptocurrencies, represent the
most significant related risk factors associated with cryptocurrencies in recent times. To ensure an appropriate operational
dealing with cryptocurrencies, the author presents a risk control matrix based on the results of the analysis and discusses control
activities to mitigate these emerging threats. Finally, a holistic Cryptocurrency IC Framework (following the COSO 2013
IC Framework) is presented, with the objective of effectively and efficiently developing and maintaining systems of internal
control with regard to cryptocurrencies.

Keywords: Blockchain; digital assets; Bitcoin; cryptocurrency; IC framework; enterprise risk management.

Word Embedding, Neural Networks and Text Classification: what is the State-of-the-Art?

Estevan Vilar, ESCP Europe (Bachelor thesis)
Junior Management Science 4(1), 2019, 35-62

In this bachelor thesis, I first introduce the machine learning methodology of text classification with the goal to describe the functioning of neural networks. Then, I identify and discuss the current development of Convolutional Neural Networks and Recurrent Neural Networks from a text classification perspective and compare both models. Furthermore, I introduce different techniques used to translate textual information in a language comprehensible by the computer, which ultimately serve as inputs for the models previously discussed. From there, I propose a method for the models to cope with words absent from a training corpus. This first part has also the goal to facilitate the access to the machine learning world to a broader audience than computer science students and experts. To test the proposal, I implement and compare two state-of-the-art models and eight different word representations using pre-trained vectors on a dataset given by LogMeIn and on a common benchmark.

I find that, with my configuration, Convolutional Neural Networks are easier to train and are also yielding better results. Nevertheless, I highlight that models that combine both architectures can potentially have a better performance, but need more work on identifying appropriate hyperparameters for training. Finally, I find that the efficacy of word embedding methods depends not only on the dataset but also on the model used to tackle the subsequent task. In my context, they can boost performance by up to 10.2% compared to a random initialization. However, further investigations are necessary to evaluate the value of my proposal with a corpus that contains a greater ratio of unknown relevant words.

Keywords: neural networks; machine learning; word embedding; text classification; business analytics.

Market reactions to the servitization of product offerings – An event study on the software as a service model

Jaakko Nurkka, Technical University of Munich (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 3(2), 2018, 121-150

Servitization is transforming traditional manufacturing and product-oriented firms across industries in many ways. One of these transformations concerns the business models of firms that transform from selling products to provisioning products as a service with product-service systems (PSS). I analyze this form of servitization in the software industry, where the software as a service business model is becoming the standard for most start-ups as well as some big enterprises like Adobe and Autodesk. Event study methodology is applied to 359 software vendors’ announcements of new software as a service offerings between 2001 and 2015, analyzing how installed base, parallel business models and partnerships with external service providers influence the reaction in the stock price of the software vendors. I find that “as-a- service” business models are not perceived as a substitute but rather as a complement for perpetual product sales and that collaboration with specialized service providers for the delivery of the new offering is rewarded by the stock market. I explain the findings with organizational inertia within the software vendors’ organization as well as that of their customers. The findings are used to discuss how companies can manage the inertia by developing new product lines for the PSS model, offering perpetual product sales in parallel and cooperating with third party service providers for the service delivery.

Keywords: SaaS, Software-as-a-Service, Servitization, Business model transformation, Stock markets

Similar Chords, Different Tune? The Effects of Different Solution Formulations on the Identification of Collaborative Opportunities in Selective Revealing: A web-based Experiment

David Burgschwaiger, Vienna University of Economics and Business (Bachelor thesis)
Junior Management Science 3(2), 2018, 80-120

As selective revealing is being recognized as a new means to find collaboration partners, little attention has been paid on how selectively revealed solutions are best formulated in order to be positively perceived. Prior research has highlighted that technological gatekeepers, i.e. individuals with who handle the R&D communication network and hence potential recipients of revealed knowledge, rely on cognitive and perceptual abilities during the recognition and evaluation of novel technologies. To enrich existing knowledge about opportunity recognition in selective revealing, this study took a cognitive perspective and intended to explore the effects of different formulated revealed solutions on the identification of collaborative opportunities. By priorly manipulating the superficial and structural commonalities of two revealed solutions conducted in collaboration with industry experts, I designed a 2*2 within-subject experiment to validate whether such an induction of analogies increases the percipience of a selectively revealed opportunity. The data, which was attained during an online-experiment with university students from different fields of studies also included individual factors such as prior knowledge about markets and technologies, creative ability (proxied by divergent thinking test and creative self-efficacy) and other demographic characteristics. The gathered data was analyzed through a linear-mixed effect model to capture the repeated design of the experiment. The computation illustrated that relational commonalities between a market and a revealed solution considerably improved the perception about a revealed solution and the willingness to engage a collaboration. In addition, the results demonstrated that superficial similarities facilitate the retrieval of analogies from structural commonalities. For the individual factors, the provided evidence could not support the initial hypotheses that individual creativity and prior knowledge positively moderate the effects of superficial and structural similarities. Contrarily, the results revealed negative moderating effects of creativity and the field of study. Despite further research is necessary, this study delivered implications for both ends of the information flow in selective revealing by conjointly examining the effects of selectively revealed opportunities and personal traits, and enriched this field of study through comprehending the drivers of early action in open innovation and strategic renewal.

Keywords: Selective Revealing, Opportunity Recognition, Open Innovation, Analogical Reasoning, Gatekeepers

Unternehmensreputation von Onlineunternehmen

Regina Ulrike Endres, Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 3(1), 2018, 38-87

Die Reputation gilt als einer der wichtigsten immateriellen Vermögenswerte eines Unternehmens. Zahlreiche Studien konnten die positiven Auswirkungen einer guten Reputation für die Stakeholder eines Unternehmens belegen. Jüngste Studien identifizieren die Reputation einer Onlinefirma als wichtigen Einflussfaktor auf das Vertrauen gegenüber einem Onlineunternehmen, auf die Reduzierung von Datenschutzbedenken sowie des wahrgenommenen Risikos. Diese Faktoren fördern die Bereitschaft zu kaufen und private Daten preiszugeben – zwei zentrale Erfolgsfaktoren von Unternehmen im Onlinebereich. Diese Arbeit widmet sich der Frage, welche Aspekte die Reputation von Onlinefirmen formen und ob sich diese vom Offlinebereich unterscheiden. In Ermangelung eines adäquaten Modells für Reputation im Onlinebereich wurde sich des bewährten Corporate Reputation Modells nach Schwaiger (2004) bedient, das traditionell für den Offlinebereich entwickelt wurde. Auf Basis von qualitativen Interviews und durch eine umfangreiche Literaturanalyse wurde dieses Modell um online-spezifische Indikatoren ergänzt. Das neu entstandene Modell wurde in einer quantitativen Onlineumfrage sowohl anhand Online- als auch Offlinefirmen getestet. Eine explorative Faktorenanalyse gibt Aufschluss über die zugrunde liegende Faktorenstruktur. Die PLS-SEM Analyse zeigt, dass im Onlinebereich vor allem eine große Kundenbasis und Empfehlungen von Freunden und Bekannten auf die Bildung der Reputation positiv Einfluss nehmen. Im Offlinebereich konnten hingegen das Erscheinungsbild der Firma und ein gutes Management als Haupteinflussfaktoren identifiziert werden.

Keywords: Company Reputation, Corporate Reputation, PLS-SEM Model, Onlinefirmen, E-Commerce

Blockchain technology and IP – investigating benefits and acceptance in governments and legislations

Jean-Maxime Rivière, Technical University of Munich (Bachelorarbeit)
Junior Management Science 3(1), 2018, 1-15

The blockchain, as underlying technology of Bitcoins, has implications that reach far beyond the original intent as virtual currency. In this paper, we investigate how blockchain technology can be encompassed in the innovation process and bring huge benefits to the patent system as well as copyrights, trade secrecy, defensive publications, and open innovation. We further explore the institutional support for the technology necessary for a successful implementation, in form of legislations and governmental projects. We find out that numerous authorities have started voting favorable legislations and recognizing the technology as a valid public ledger. Ultimately, we confirm our findings by interviewing three actors involved in the innovation process.

Keywords: Bitcoin, Blockchain, Intellectual property, Legislation, Innovation

Analyzing Dynamic Capabilities in the Context of Cloud Platform Ecosystems – A Case Study Approach

Kevin Rudolph, Technical University of Berlin (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 2(3), 2017, 124-172

Dynamic capabilities (DCs) refer to a firm’s abilities to continuously adapt its resource base in order to respond to changes in its external environment. The capability to change dynamically is crucial in business ecosystems that are composed of a variety of actors.

Amazon Web Services (AWS), the leader in the cloud platform industry, is a promising cloud platform provider (CPP) to show a high degree of dynamic capability fulfillment within its highly fluctuating ecosystem. To date, the full scope of dynamic capabilities in cloud platform ecosystems (CPEs) has not been fully understood. Previous work has failed to deliver a combined perspective of explicit dynamic capabilities in cloud platform ecosystems applied on an in-depth practical case.

With our mixed-method case study on the AWS ecosystem we deliver a thorough understanding of its sensing, seizing and transforming capabilities. We generate a set of strategy management frameworks that support our expectations, lead to unexpected insights and answer the questions of what, how, why and with whom AWS uses DCs. In detail, we provide an understanding about DC chronological change, DC network patterns and DC logical explanations. Our research is based on a self-compiled case study database containing 16k+ secondary data pages from interviews, blogs, announcements, case studies, job vacancies, etc. that we analyze qualitatively and quantitatively. We find out that AWS develops and holds a large set of interacting dynamic capabilities incorporating a variety of ecosystem actors in order to sustain tremendous customer value and satisfaction.

The thesis infers significant theoretical and practical implications for all CPE actors, like partners, customers, investors and researchers in the field of IT strategy management. Managers of all CPE actors are encouraged to critically evaluate their own maturity level and complement a CPP’s DC explications in order to boost business by implementing sensing, seizing, transforming and innovating capabilities.

Keywords: Dynamic Capabilities, Cloud Platform Ecosystems, Innovation Capabilities, Mixed-Methods Case Study, Amazon Web Services

Explaining the Success of user-centered Design – An Empirical Study across German B2C Firms

Nadine Chochoiek, Technical University of Munich (Master thesis)
Junior Management Science 2(1), 2017, 81-116

This study focuses on the widely spread concept of User-Centered Design (UCD) and tries to answer the question why it is so popular. On the one hand, it is of interest to reveal the nature of UCD, especially in terms of the methods used, the types of users involved and the stages the involvement takes place. On the other hand, this paper aims to find out about the success of UCD projects as well as the organizational context that is beneficial for UCD. To do so, several streams of scientific literature in the field of UCD as well as organization theory are reviewed and the results of an empirical study conducted among UCD experts in Germany are analyzed. The theoretically derived characteristics could mainly be confirmed by the insights of the study. Moreover, several hypotheses concerning the influence of the organizational context using established constructs (IT competence, UCD competence, customer orientation, innovativeness, exploration and exploitation as well as the top management team) towards the project success in an UCD setup are proposed and tested by the means of a multiple factor analysis. By analyzing open comments concerning the facilitators and obstacles of UCD activities deeper insight into the daily business of UCD experts can be gained. A comparison between two subsamples split according to their project success score yield interesting results concerning different motives, types of integrated users and the locus of the user integration. This study has been created in collaboration with the user research and user experience (UX) consulting agency ‘Facit Digital’ who are based in Munich, Germany.

Keywords: User-Centered Design, User Integration, Exploration, Exploitation, Empirical Investigation

Necessity is the Mother of Invention: Rise of Creativity due to Constraints

Meruert Sagindyk, Technical University of Munich (Bachelor thesis)
Junior Management Science 1(2), 2016, 1-19

Due to its unique nature, creativity it is an inseparable part of an innovative outcome. While creativity and innovation are significant indicators of organizational present and future success, it is reasonable to introduce an organizational approach to promote both phenomena. Since work environment is rarely abundant, a very special way of enhancing creativity is discussed and analyzed, known as “less is more”. This novel view refers to the ability of demonstrating creative thinking under a restriction of the favorable conditions. The prior interest of this Bachelor’s thesis is to reflect the possible positive impact of scarcity of time, budget, and monitoring on the level of creativity. Constraint-based creativity is indeed a real-life phenomenon, though limitations alone may rarely provide an enhancement of creative thinking and thus require supplementary effects.

Keywords: Constraints, Creativity, Innovation, Scarcity, Invention

Go to article page