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MAN 770 Research Seminar (Fall 2018)

MAN 770 Research Seminar (Fall 2018)

Strategic Management, Entrepreneurship, and Digitalization in Family Firms


Course Outline

This research seminar covers current research at the intersection of strategic management research, entrepreneurship, and family firms. A particular focus is put on research on digitalization and the role of CEOs. Students will discuss and reflect upon questions such as “Are family CEOs superior performers?”, “What does it mean to be "married-to-the-firm"?”, or “Are founder CEOs more overconfident than professional CEOs?”, “How to master digital transformation in family firms?” and “What is the social context of firm ownership?” This is an advanced course to be taken towards the master’s end in preparation for the master thesis.


Learning Outcomes

The goal of the course is twofold. First, it is designed to help participants gain access to the main topics and theories intersecting strategic management, entrepreneurship, & family business research. We will read and discuss 14 seminal articles, and simulate an academic conference in class. This familiarizes participants with the state of the art research, its designs & methods, and the respective current academic debate. The second goal of the course is to familiarize students with the core techniques of scientific work in business studies. This includes developing a research idea, evaluating its contribution, obtaining data, performing analyses using STATA, and reporting results in article and presentation format.



Course capacity is limited. Registration via the student portal ( is mandatory (Open until 26 August,2018). Additionally, apply to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by sending your student ID, transcript of grades, and CV & motivation letter (both 1 page). Application deadline: 26 August, 2018


Place & Time

Please refer to the course syllabus for details. 



The course consists of three components: I. Student presentation, II. discussion, and III. final assignment (details below). Each component accounts for one third of the course grade.

Please refer to the course syllabus for details. 


Persons in Charge

Instructor: AkadR. Dr. Jan-Philipp Ahrens, Dipl.-Kfm.

Tutor: Baris Istipliler, M.Sc.

Secretary: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Course Load and Language

ECTS: depending on your course of study

Language: English


Readings & Resources

Please refer to the course syllabus for details. 


Further Information

Please note: This term, this course is neither coordinated nor instructed by the MCEI Team but by an MCEI affiliated assistant professor at the Institute for SME Research (see persons in charge section). Please contact the instructors or the secretariat's office in case of further questions on content, admission or course outline. Students with projects qualifying for a Master Thesis Inside the Venture in the MCEI accelerator-scheme can apply with any other research seminar and can be granted exceptions from the MAN 770 requirement.


Schedule (Spring 2018)

Please refer to the course syllabus for details. 

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  • University of Mannheim
  • Institut für Mittelstandsforschung
  • Gründerverbund
  • ESF
  • Europäische Union
  • Baden-Württemberg - Ministerium für Finanzen und Wirtschaft
  • Absolventum