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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.