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New DFG Research Training Group to be established at the University of Passau

The German Research Foundation (DFG) is setting up 14 new research training groups (RTGs) throughout Germany to further support researchers at the early stages of their career. The DFG gave the University of Passau the go-ahead for one such RTG.

From October 2022, the Research Training Group "Digital Platform Ecosystems" will be the University’s pivotal hub for leading-edge, international, and interdisciplinary research and advanced academic qualifications around a central phenomenon of the digital economy.

The Passau Research Training Group "Digital Platform Ecosystems (DPE)"

Digital platform ecosystems are both the basis for fundamentally novel data- and knowledge-intensive business models and a key phenomenon of the digital economy: AirBnB, Amazon, Uber, Google and Microsoft are well-known examples of platforms that form such digital ecosystems. The Research Training Group "Digital Platform Ecosystems (DPE) – Digital Platform-Based Value Creation and its Implications for Data Exchange, Organisation and Socio-Economic Development" seeks to address the research question of "What are the idiosyncratic characteristics of digital platform ecosystems and what are their implications for the transformation and design of economic value-creation architectures as well as for overarching socio-economic and regulatory developments?"

Starting in October 2022, the DFG will fund numerous doctoral and postdoctoral researchers at the University of Passau for four and a half years. They are guided by nine doctoral advisors, including Spokesperson Professor Jan Krämer and Deputy Spokesperson Professor Andreas König, who jointly planned and initiated the RTG over the past three years, and Professors Stefan Bauernschuster, Michael Grimm, Carolin Häussler, Hannah Schmid-Petri, Jan Schumann, Thomas Widjaja, and Dr Daniel Schnurr.

"We are very pleased and grateful for this opportunity to establish Passau as a hub for research on digital platforms", said Professor Jan Krämer. "Our approach is truly unique. We are tackling digital platforms from a combination of disciplines and different perspectives, including information systems, business administration, economics, and communication science. One important focal point of our research is on the societal challenges and opportunities that emerge with these platforms – for industrialised countries and developing countries alike. There have long been calls for such an overarching perspective, but so far no-one has truly adopted and advanced such a discipline-crossing approach to this level of consistency. This is both surprising and problematic because digital platform ecosystems are already having a tremendous impact on nearly all sectors of the economy, and their implications for society as a whole are staggering."

Professor Andreas König added: "I think the first thing we'll do is celebrate – and then we'll immediately begin preparations so that we can hit the ground running next year. We want to attract the cream of the crop of critically thinking and creative doctoral students, and we believe that with our combined expertise, our RTG is certainly attractive. Notably, the generous funding will also enable us to invite even more colleagues from around the world, who are at the top of their respective fields, to Passau. This will bring us one step closer to realising our vision of our University as a leading research centre on the societal implications of digitalisation."

President Professor Ulrich Bartosch thanked all those involved in the proposal and emphasised that "being granted the DFG Research Training Group Digital Platform Ecosystems is a wonderful success for the University of Passau as a whole. Our researchers indeed establish Passau as a hotspot for one of the essential acceleration processes for economic development."

"In demonstrating this level of research excellence in this highly competitive application process, we have reached an important milestone for our university", said Professor Robert Obermaier, the University of Passau's Vice President for Research, adding: "My thanks and congratulations go to all academics involved and the administrative staff supporting them. This was truly an outstanding team performance. And the best thing is: We can now offer excellent young researchers the best possible conditions for starting their career in science for several years."

Professor Schumann, Dean of the School of Business, Economics and Information Systems – which is home to eight of the nine applicants – said: "The DFG grant for the Research Training Group is excellent news. It really highlights the research excellence at our school. There will be many fascinating events and doctoral courses, which will vastly enrich and drive our research forward over the coming years."

Research Training Groups offer doctoral researchers a focused research programme and a structured training strategy as a framework in which to complete their doctorate. Their aim is to prepare doctoral researchers for the complexities of the job market in science and academia and simultaneously to encourage early scientific independence. The DFG currently funds a total of 218 RTGs. For an overview, visit the German Research Foundation's website.

Doctoral advisors

Professor Stefan Bauernschuster

researches empirical evaluation of political measures

How do political measures influence decisions made by individuals and families?

@SBauernschuster

How do political measures influence decisions made by individuals and families?

@SBauernschuster

Professor Stefan Bauernschuster has held the Chair of Public Economics of the University of Passau since 2013. Moreover, he is a research professor at the ifo Institute in Munich, CESifo Affiliate and a member of the Social Policy Committee of the German Economic Association.

Prof. Dr. Michael Grimm, Inhaber des Lehrstuhls für Development Economics

Professor Michael Grimm

researches technological change in developing countries

What are the measures that enable developing countries to participate in global market processes?

What are the measures that enable developing countries to participate in global market processes?

Professor Michael Grimm has held the Chair of Development Economics of the University of Passau since 2012. Prior to this, he held the posts of Professor of Applied Development Economics at Erasmus University Rotterdam, Visiting Professor at Paris School of Economics and Advisor for the World Bank in Washington, D.C. (United States).

Prof. Dr. Carolin Häussler

Professor Carolin Häussler

researches co-operation and innovation

How can we use and increase the innovative strength of fluid organisations?

@CaroHaeussler

How can we use and increase the innovative strength of fluid organisations?

@CaroHaeussler

Professor Carolin Haeussler has held the Chair of Organisation, Technology Management and Entrepreneurship since 2011 and has been bringing researchers from all over the world to Passau with the International Centre for Economics and Business Studies.

Prof. Dr. Andreas König

Professor Andreas König

researches organisational change and executives’ personalities and communications

How do established organisations and their leaders respond to the discontinuities that emerge with digitalisation?

How do established organisations and their leaders respond to the discontinuities that emerge with digitalisation?

Professor Andreas König has held the Chair of International Management of the Faculty of Business, Economics and Information Systems, University of Passau, since 2013. His research output is published in leading international journals such as Administrative Science Quarterly, the Academy of Management Review and Research Policy.

Prof. Dr. Jan Krämer

Professor Jan Krämer

researches the regulation of the Platform Economy

What conditions are required on the internet to create competition and innovation?

@kraemer_

What conditions are required on the internet to create competition and innovation?

@kraemer_

Professor Jan Krämer has held the Chair of Internet and Telecommunications Business of the University of Passau since 2014 and is a Research Fellow at the Centre on Regulation in Europe (CERRE), a Brussels-based think tank.

Prof. Dr. Hannah Schmid-Petri, Inhaberin des Lehrstuhls für Wissenschaftskommunikation an der Universität Passau.

Professor Hannah Schmid-Petri

researches public debates – both on line and off

How are digitalisation issues publicly discussed and what consequences does that have for political processes?

How are digitalisation issues publicly discussed and what consequences does that have for political processes?

Professor Hannah Schmid-Petri is the holder of the Chair of Science Communication at the University of Passau and leads the Fraunhofer 'Science Communication' research group, which is based at the Fraunhofer Cluster of Excellence 'Integrated Energy Systems' CINES. She analyses public discussions on political issues such as digitalisation and climate change.

Portrait von Dr. Daniel Schnurr, Leiter der Forschungsgruppe Data Policies

Dr. Daniel Schnurr

researches data policies in digital markets

How should we design data access from a technical, economic and regulatory perspective?

@daniel_schnurr

How should we design data access from a technical, economic and regulatory perspective?

@daniel_schnurr

Daniel Schnurr leads the research group Data Policies at the University of Passau. He received his Ph.D. in Information Systems from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, where he previously studied Information Engineering and Management (B.Sc. & M.Sc.). He is the principal investigator of the research project 'Data Neutrality & Open Access: Coherent Economic Policies for the Digital Economy' that is coordinated by the Bavarian Research Institute for Digital Transformation. His current research focuses on digital platforms, data sharing and competition with artificial intelligence.

Professor Jan Schumann

Professor Jan Hendrik Schumann

researches B2C relationships

How does it affect people when firms pass on their data?

How does it affect people when firms pass on their data?

Professor Jan Hendrik Schumann has held the Chair of Marketing and Innovation of the University of Passau since 2012. Since July 2013, he has also worked a director of the Institute of Market and Economic Research.

Professor Thomas Widjaja

Professor Thomas Widjaja

researches secondary data use

What changes when companies develop new services using customer data?

What changes when companies develop new services using customer data?

Professor Thomas Widjaja has held the Chair of Business Information Systems since 2016. Previously, he gained his doctoral and postdoctoral degrees at TU Darmstadt.

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