List of Master theses topics at the Strategy Subject Area

Master theses are supervised by Professor Reitzig, Professor Koschat or Asst.Prof. Keck, depending on the topic.

However, most Master thesis candidates closely co-ordinate with other members of the subject area as well.

Find the updated list of topics (per 20 November 2018) here. You can apply for any of the topics listed under

'Available Topics'.Only those listed separately as previous topics/completed theses are no longer available.

 

Available Topics

Topic Track Contact partners at Dept. Brief Description Supplementary Information &
Pre-requisites
NEW (20.11.). Big-data driven business models – an empirical analysis of their distribution and success in the D/A/Ch region Science & Practice Prof. Markus Reitzig Big-data (BD) has been described as the new “crude” of modern business. Used in combination with techniques referred to as machine learning (ML), it has the potential to enhance (narrow) artificial intelligence (AI). Business models drawing on large, unstructured data, often (but not always) combining it with ML have spawned a large variety of business models and lead to firm foundings across the globe. The D/A/CH market is developing rapidly, too, however, little systematic knowledge on where BD driven business models have entered the most and successfully exists until today. The goal of the thesis is (1) to develop a systematic characterization of different types of BD-driven business models (including those involving ML/AI), (2) provide a detailed disaggregated empirical overview of its dissemination across industries in D/A/CH through original data collection, (3) and a preliminary analysis of performance of different business models across industries. * Successful completion of at least one class on empirical methods and classes on statistical analysis at Master level at the Strategy Subject Area (or passing of equivalent classes elsewhere leading to familiarity with the design of experimental studies and handling of statistical analysis pertaining to experimental results using software - e.g., Stata, SPSS, R etc.).
* Excellency in all required prerequisites.
* Willingness and ability to complete the Master thesis in due course
* Optimally: demonstrated prior affinity/experience in management consulting
NEW (05.11.). Novel forms of organizing in political decision-making Science & Practice Prof. Markus Reitzig Politics is one of the oldest and best known processes of group decision-making. Despite it affecting more individuals than hardly any group-decision making process, however, its contemporary scientific analysis within political science departments largely unfolds in disciplinary isolation without embracing the advances made in adjacent disciplines. Notably, insights from the field of organizational design in how to re-design decision-making structures in the presence of novel mass-connecting technologies, the rise of novel coordination instruments (e.g. blockchain), and the complexity of task interdependencies at regional and national levels appear underrepresented in the discourse of designing political systems for future societies.
This thesis is dedicated to structuring extant thinking in the field of political science, contrasting it with current thinking in the field of organizational design, and shedding qualitative empirical evidence on key questions to be developed in the course of the work.
* Successful completion of at least one class on empirical methods and classes on statistical analysis at Master level at the Strategy Subject Area (or passing of equivalent classes elsewhere leading to familiarity with the design of experimental studies and handling of statistical analysis pertaining to experimental results using software - e.g., Stata, SPSS, R etc.).
* Excellency in all required prerequisites.
* Willingness and ability to complete the Master thesis in due course
* Optimally: demonstrated prior affinity/knowledge to topics in the realm of political science
NEW (05.11.). IT-based Decision-Support Tools in General Management – supplies for and demands of mid-level managers in Germany, Austria, and the CEE Practice Prof. Markus Reitzig IT-based decision-support tools are increasing in importance for general managers. The goal of this thesis is to provide an in-depth empirical overview of the current supplies and demands for related products in Germany, Austria, and the CEE against the particular backdrop of recent developments in the sector (digital transformation, big data driven business models, etc.). *Successful completion of at least one class on data collection/analysis at Master level, Subject area Strategy (or passing of an equivalent class elsewhere leading to familiarity with the design of empirical studies, handling of statistical analysis software - e.g., Stata, SPSS, R etc.).
*Skills in setting up online questionnaires.
*Excellency in all required prerequisites.
*Interest (and optimally experience) in management consulting.
*Interest in novel technologies relevant to business (big data, internet of things, etc.).
* Willingness and ability to complete the Master thesis
Experiments on flat collaboration architectures Science & Practice Prof. Markus Reitzig/Valentina Richter, MSc Organizations across sectors are realizing the need to create robust peer-to-peer collaboration without relying on hierarchy.
Agile teams, non-hierarchical organizations, “holacracies”, inter-departmental collaboration, inter-firm alliances- in each case their root objective is to create effective collaboration without relying on layers of authority and bosses, but also without losing accountability.
This thesis is dedicated towards experimentally testing if and how effective flat collaboration architectures can be fostered using the insights of prior research by Puranam, Alexy, and Reitzig (2014).
The work complements ongoing research at the Strategy Subject Area.
*Successful completion of at least one class on experimental methods and classes on statistical analysis at Master level at the Strategy Subject Area (or passing of equivalent classes elsewhere leading to familiarity with the design of experimental studies and handling of statistical analysis pertaining to experimental results using software - e.g., Stata, SPSS, R etc.).
*Affinity towards/entrepreneurial attitude when organizing and conducting experimental studies in corporate and non-for profit settings
*Excellency in all required prerequisites.
Experiments on smart team architectures Science & Practice Prof. Markus Reitzig/Valentina Richter, MSc Organizations across sectors are realizing the need to create robust peer-to-peer collaboration without relying on hierarchy.
Agile teams, non-hierarchical organizations, “holacracies”, inter-departmental collaboration, inter-firm alliances- in each case their root objective is to create effective collaboration without relying on layers of authority and bosses, but also without losing accountability.
This thesis is dedicated towards experimentally testing if and how effective smart team architectures can be fostered using the insights of prior research by Puranam, Alexy, and Reitzig (2014).
The work complements ongoing research at the Strategy Subject Area.
*Successful completion of at least one class on experimental methods and classes on statistical analysis at Master level at the Strategy Subject Area (or passing of equivalent classes elsewhere leading to familiarity with the design of experimental studies and handling of statistical analysis pertaining to experimental results using software - e.g., Stata, SPSS, R etc.).
*Affinity towards/entrepreneurial attitude when organizing and conducting experimental studies in corporate and non-for profit settings
*Excellency in all required prerequisites.
Skill-Based sorting in GitHub – a complementary survey study Science Prof. Markus Reitzig/Inna Smirnova, MSc GitHub constitutes the world’s largest platform hosting open source software (OSS) repositories (projects). The goal of this thesis is to collect primary information on a selected sample of contributors (programmers) and relate these motivations to the contributors’ skill profiles as measurable from secondary data (notably Stack Overflow), to shed light on the question as to which motivations lead to what type of contributor self-selection onto projects. The work complements ongoing research at the Strategy Subject Area. *Successful completion of at least one class on data collection/analysis at Master level, Subject area Strategy (or passing of an equivalent class elsewhere leading to familiarity with the design of empirical studies, handling of statistical analysis software - e.g., Stata, SPSS, R etc.).
*Skills in setting up online questionnaires.
*Skills in analyzing large-scale secondary data.
*Excellency in all required prerequisites.
Interest in high technology.

*Other: Supervision can only be guaranteed until October 2018. Candidates should plan on handing in their thesis until October 2018.
Multiplex network formation in peer production communities – an empirical study within GitHub and StackOverflow Science Prof. Markus Reitzig/Inna Smirnova, MSc Peer production communities rely less on the nature of formal (authoritative) structures to pass on information than they do on informal, networked structures. The goal of this thesis is to collect primary information on a selected sample of GitHub contributors (programmers) and StackOverflow contributors on their perceptions of what constitutes tie formation at various levels, and how these are potentially interlinked. The work complements ongoing research at the Strategy Subject Area. *Successful completion of at least one class on data collection/analysis at Master level, Subject area Strategy (or passing of an equivalent class elsewhere leading to familiarity with the design of empirical studies, handling of statistical analysis software - e.g., Stata, SPSS, R etc.).
*Skills in setting up online questionnaires.
*Skills in analyzing large-scale secondary data.
*Excellency in all required prerequisites.
*Interest in high technology.

*Other: Supervision can only be guaranteed until October 2018. Candidates should plan on handing in their thesis until October 2018.
Current supplies, demands, and ongoing developments in the Strategy Consulting Sector in Austria and the CEE .(THIS THESIS IS SUPPOSED TO BE JOINTLY ADDRESSED BY TWO STUDENTS) Practice Prof. Markus Reitzig Strategy Consulting – the external advisory on devising novel and improving existing businesses – has undergone significant change over the past years in lead markets such as the United States and Germany. The goal of this thesis is to provide an in-depth empirical overview of the current supplies and demands for strategy consulting services/products in (a) Austria and (b) the CEE against the particular backdrop of recent developments in the sector (digital transformation, big data driven business models, etc.). *Successful completion of at least one class on data collection/analysis at Master level, Subject area Strategy (or passing of an equivalent class elsewhere leading to familiarity with the design of empirical studies, handling of statistical analysis software - e.g., Stata, SPSS, R etc.).
*Skills in setting up online questionnaires.
*Excellency in all required prerequisites.
*Interest (and optimally experience) in management consulting.
*Interest in novel technologies relevant to business (big data, internet of things, etc.).
*Optimally (but not compulsory) native language skills relevant to the CEE region
Individual skills in group-based innovation Science Asst. Prof. Steffen Keck

The ability to create innovative and creative solutions to problems is a key success factor for organizations. Most activities related to innovation are carried out by groups rather than single individuals posing the question to what extent groups are able to take optimal advantage of the skills that their individual group members possess. The goal of this theses is to explore this question and identify factors that facilitate or hinder groups to do so. The thesis will include planning, conducting and analyzing a controlled experiment with a sample of student participants. *Familiarity with the design and analysis of behavioural experiments (e.g., from classes in the Strategic Management major).

*Ability to conduct a statistical analysis of quantitative data (e.g., with SPSS or STATA).

*Willingness and ability to independently recruit participants and conduct a behavioural experiment.
Knowledge transfers in groups Science Asst. Prof. Steffen Keck

Individuals in organizations are often members of several work groups at the same time and might also perform a number of tasks individually. As a consequence it is of fundamental importance that groups not only collectively develop the necessary skills and knowledge to successfully solve a particular problem, but also transfer that knowledge to individual group members who can then apply it when working on their own, or pass on that knowledge to members of other groups. The goal of this thesis is to explore the conditions under which such group-to-individual knowledge transfers are effective. To explore this question this thesis will include planning, conducting and analyzing a controlled experiment with a sample of student participants. *Familiarity with the design and analysis of behavioural experiments (e.g., from classes in the Strategic Management major).

*Ability to conduct a statistical analysis of quantitative data (e.g., with SPSS or STATA).

*Willingness and ability to independently recruit participants and conduct a behavioural experiment. The Impact of E-Platforms on International Trade
The Importance of E-Platforms in Austrian B2B Firms' Business Relations Practice Prof. Martin Koschat *You need to have completed at least one course with Prof. Koschat
The Impact of European Union Rules on European Businesses Practice Prof. Martin Koschat *You need to have completed at least one course with Prof. Koschat

 

Previous Topics

Please find some of our previous topics (i.e. completed theses) here (available in the library):

  • Functional Diversity in Teams
  • The Impact of CEO Cultural Intelligence on Beer Producers' Export Propensity
  • Shareholder Activism and Generalist CEOs: An Empirical Analysis
  • Effects of authority structures in small groups, solving exploration and exploitation tasks
  • Rational enough to know better, confident enough to ignore anyway
  • Striving for status: The influence of tenure on productivity within the Top 20 Business Schools in the U.S.
  • The Influence of the the Top Management on New Product Innovation
  • The Challenges of a Small Slovak Company within the confines of the European Union
  • When does functional diversity affect team performance?
  • Performance feedback and risk taking - the role of CEO loss aversion and confirmation bias
  • Managerial Representation and Decision-Making in Systemic Industries
  • Performance assessment in groups: Comparison of the expression of overplacement in groups and individuals
  • CEO Attention Before and During the Financial Crisis
  • A General Theory of Systemic Industries
  • The emergence of organisational design in new ventures: n ethnographic study in the online booking industry
  • Empirical evidence of the connection between the CEO's charisma and a firm performance in the context of the U.S. commercial banking sector
  • Viennese CEOs make great international business: cornerstones of their success
  • Generalist CEO vs. Specialist CEO: Risk-taking behavior in response to performance feedback
  • The Renaissance of Electromobility - The Case of Tesla
  • Effect of universities research groups' sizes and hierarchy on their performance: evidence from Austria and Germany
  • The influence of CEO social class background on risk taking, individualism and collectivism
  • Mutual Influences on the Exchange of Information during Group Decision-Making Processes
  • Narcissistic CEO's Impact on NPI Rates
  • What determines market reactions to CEO announcements?
  • The staging of start-up and its interference with motivational issues and the skill-task match of non-founding employees
  • Cooperation Patterns: A study in the area of management, strategy and organization in the top 40 business schools in the US
  • The emergence of organizational design in new ventures: an ethnographic study in the food industry
  • Intuitive and Analytical Judgements in Management: The Effect of Expertise in Decision Making
  • The Effects of Geographic Dispersion on Startup Founding Teams
  • Shareholder Activism: Analysis of Implemented Shareholder Proposals
  • Group Decision-Making in Organisations
  • A Sequential Model of Strategic Information Exchange for Group Decisions in Organizations
  • Performance consequences of the top executive turnover in the wake of new CEO appointments