Ethics, law & information society

The increasing digitalization of traditional business models as well as the emergence of completely new business models based on digitalization is one of the core challenges for entrepreneurial activities and brings about changes at social, organizational and individual level. In particular, legal and ethical issues increasingly arise in this area. The research area "Ethics, Law & Information Society" sheds light on this development from a business, a legal as well as an ethical point of view. Thus, the areas Human Resources, Mergers & Acquisitions, Law & Ethics, Asymmetric Information as well as Life-long Learning are examined.


Personnel Management

People traditionally play a central role in companies. Developments in the direct and indirect environment of companies are increasingly causing both practice and science to question previous practices and basic assumptions. Trends and less predictable disruptive developments have an impact on the current and future design of basic functions such as personnel recruitment, development, deployment, incentive design and leadership. Among other things, increasing international networking and digital developments are a driving force behind this change. The challenges of such changes for society, companies and employees are subject of this research field.

Mergers & Acquisitions

The relevance of Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A) for companies is consistently high and will increase in the future, especially for technology and innovation adoption as well as business model innovation. Nevertheless, M&A is still a less well-understood topic in research and practice. Despite decades of intensive research efforts, the success rates of M&A have not yet increased and, above all, the challenges of digitalization in M&A have so far only been marginally considered. Through the activity in the research field, not only a contribution to scientific research but also a strong practical transfer shall be made.

Against this background, the SMA Research Lab was founded as a joint research institution of the University of Innsbruck and the Management Center Innsbruck in the field of Corporate Strategy, Mergers & Acquisitions. The Lab's research activities make an important contribution to scientific discourse and at the same time actively support companies in overcoming their strategic challenges.

Law & Ethics

The relationship between European law and ethics in general and in the field of digitalization in particular is an increasing subject of discussions in research and practice. The activities in the research field "Law & Ethics" are intended to support the development and application of innovation in the field of digitalization (in particular in the field of AI) through value-based guidelines for action.

Named after one of the founding fathers of the European Union (EU), Jean Monnet, the EU supports professorships specializing in EU studies through its Erasmus+ program. MCI professor Markus Frischhut, holder of a Jean Monnet Chair from 2016 to 2019, has once again been awarded a Jean Monnet Professorship from 2019 to 2021, focusing on ethics and values with a particular focus on aspects of digitization.

Asymmetric Information

The aim of research in the field of asymmetric information is the innovative and interdisciplinary investigation of specific situations of asymmetric information distribution. In addition to the purely scientific analysis of the corresponding phenomenon, effective business-oriented concepts for practice are to be developed in accordance with the respective findings, which minimize efficiency losses as a consequence of asymmetric information.

Life-long Learning

Research in the field of Life-long Learning is concerned with the challenges that digitalization poses for individual and organizational development today and in the future. The necessary continuous adaptation to the new requirements of individuals and organizations alike places the topics of knowledge management and competence development in the information society into the focus of our research. In addition, (digital) workplace learning and learning trends in vocational education and training, such as e-learning, blended learning, collaborative online learning or learning analytics, are the subject of this research field, which aims both at the scientific treatment of these topics and at their practical implementation.

Markus Frischhut
FH-Prof. Dr. Markus Frischhut, LL.M. Professor & Study Coordinator European Union Law +43 512 2070 - 3632

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EU Values & DIGitalization for our CommuNITY (DIGNITY)
2019 - 2022

Project Lead:
FH-Prof. Dr. Markus Frischhut, LL.M.

Mag. Daniel Degischer

Under the umbrella of the UN Global Compact, the UN's Principles for Responsible Management Education (PRME) initiative was founded in 2007. In 2011, MCI has joined PRME, to promote responsible management education and is also a founding member of the PRME-DACH Chapter. Taking such a holistic approach in education is also part of MCI's mission, which thrives, amongst others, on responsibility towards society. Named according to one of the EU's founding fathers, Jean Monnet, the European Union (EU) is supporting activities in the field of EU integration under its Erasmus+ programme. Within this context, the EU has established a Jean Monnet chair on European integration & ethics from September 2016 to August 2019. Based on this previous chair on ethics, in September 2019 the EU has established a new Jean Monnet Chair on EU values and digitalization, which is again generously co-funded by Erasmus+. This chair closely cooperates with ethucation (an independent network for etchics and bioethics), as well as with SETup (support for social entrepreneurship).

Project homepage:

Digitalisation Strategy & Change in the Craft Trade Sector
2019 - 2020

Project Lead:
FH-Prof. Dr. Maria Rabl

Mag. iur. Julia Waldegger, BA

Mag. Christiane Aufschnaiter, Bakk. Phil.

In the project "Digitization & Change in the Crafts", the MCI is developing a strategy to exploit the potential of digitization in the crafts sector together with Riedle Installationen GmbH. First, MCI conducts interviews to evaluate the current situation in the company. Then, the MCI and Riedle Installationen GmbH develop goals and concrete implementation options in workshops. Moreover, the MCI supports Riedle Installationen GmbH in implementing the digitization strategy. In addition to process optimization and the introduction of digital tools, the focus of the project is on supporting the change process.

  • Bauer, F., Schriber, S., Degischer, D., & King, D. R. (2018). Contextualizing speed and cross-border acquisition performance: Labor market flexibility and efficiency effects. Journal of World Business. doi: 10.1016/j.jwb.2018.01.001
  • Walsh, M., Kittler, M. G., & Mahal, D. (2017). Towards a New Paradigm of Healthcare: Addressing Challenges to Professional Identities through Community Operational Research. European Journal of Operational Research, 268(3), 1125-1133.
  • Frischhut, M. (2019). The Ethical Spirit of EU law. Cham: Springer International Publishing. Open access:
  • Rattrie, L. T., Kittler, M. G., & Paul, K. I. (2020) Culture, Burnout and Engagement: A Meta‐Analysis on National Cultural Values as Moderators in JD‐R Theory. Applied Psychology, 69(1), 176-220.
  • Farrell, W. C., & Phungsoonthorn, T. (2020). Generation Z in Thailand. International Journal of Cross Cultural Management.

  • Balafoutas, L., Czermak, S., Eulerich, M., Fornwagner, H. (2019, Jänner). Incentives for dishonesty: An experimental study with internal Auditors. Paper presented at the HHS research Seminar of the School of Economics, Stockholm.
  • Faeth, P. & Kittler M.G. (2019) Hostile Environments and Expatriation: Contextualising Demands and Resources. Paper presented at the 45th EIBA Annual Conference 2019, Leeds, UK. (What Now? International Business in a Confused World Order, 13 – 15 December 2019)
  • Walsh, M., Kittler, M.G., Antwi, J. Mthethwa, K. & Robbins, M. (2018) Strengthening Health Systems: A Salutogenic Community Operational Research Perspective. Paper presented at the OR60 Operational Research Society Annual Conference, Lancaster, UK.
  • Frischhut, M. (2018). The relationship of EU law and science: with a special emphasis on the precautionary principle. VBE group workshop "Science and Proven Experience in the Legal Regulation of Risk”, May 28th, Lund University, Sweden. DOI: 10.13140/RG.2.2.21190.98880.
  • Mosenhauer, M. (2019, February). Salience and Management-by-Exception. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Royal Economic Society, Warwick, UK