Organisation and Development of Business Families – Prof. Dr. Heiko Kleve takes over new WIFU Foundation Chair

Das WIFU wächst

 

Since July 1, 2017, Prof. Dr. Heiko Kleve has been supporting the team of the Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU) at Witten/Herdecke University in research and teaching on the characteristics of family businesses. He was appointed to the newly established WIFU Foundation Chair for Organisation and Development of Business Families. Prof. Kleve contributes a great academic experience to WIFU. He recently taught and researched as a professor of sociological and socio-psychological foundations of social work at the Fachhochschule Potsdam. From 2013 to 2017, he was head of the Department of Social and Educational Sciences. Furthermore, he was also director of the Master’s degree program in Social Work with Families, as well as the scientific director of the further training courses on systemic case management, systemic coaching and systemic constellations. He received his doctorate in sociology in 1998 at the Freie Universität Berlin. Prof. Kleve has been an advisor, mediator, coach and supervisor for individuals, groups, teams and companies for 20 years and has authored numerous specialist publications.

WIFU is very happy to welcome our newest team member!

Call for Paper by the Journal of Business Ethics: “Values, Spirituality and Religion: Family Business and The Roots Of Sustainable Ethical Behavior”

Family Businesses, Sustainability and Ethics

 

The Witten Institute for Family Business is very happy to announce a new Call for Paper by the Journal of Business Ethics on the topic “Values, Spirituality and Religion: Family Business and The Roots Of Sustainable Ethical Behavior”. Dr. Giovanna Campopiano, assistant professor at the Chair of  Business Administration and Family Entrepreneurship, will be co-editing this special Issue. The other editors are: Joseph H. Astrachan (Kennesaw State University), Massimo Baù (Jönköping International Business School) und Claudia Binz Astrachan (Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts).

The Call for Paper focuses on the need to take a closer look at ethics, values and the role that religion and spirituality play in influencing ethical behavior in the family business context.

Please find detailed information under the following link: Journal of Business Ethics.

We look forward to all submissions!

New WIFU study “Behavioral and Cultural Aspects of German Family Firms Internationalizing to China and India” published

Family Businesses in China und Indien

 

The importance of internationalization into fast-growing emerging markets such as China and India has grown dramatically in recent decades, also effecting family businesses. China and India are the largest markets in Asia and have shown considerable growth in the past decade. German family businesses have recognized this trend and since then have become increasingly active regarding the internationalization into these markets, not least in order to grow outside the stagnating Western markets.

The new WIFU study, which was developed in cooperation with DEG, shows that German family businesses have made substantial investments in order to build up a strong presence in China and India. Both markets have great potential for growth, especially through government-sponsored investment programs. The prejudice that China and India are mere low-wage countries in which Western companies can produce cost-effectively has long been outdated. On the contrary, German family-owned companies are primarily focused on capturing the local market.

The study is part of a large-scale research project, which is planned for four years and examines various aspects of the internationalization process of family businesses. The aim is to give owners and managers of family businesses important insights into complex strategic internationalization processes.

The complete English study and a German summary are available in the download section.

Prof. Dr. Tom A. Rüsen appointed Visiting Professor by Lucerne School of Business

 

WIFU is extremely proud to announce that Prof. Dr. Tom A. Rüsen has been awarded the title “Visiting Professor” by Lucerne School of Business. The status “Visiting Professor” is given by the university as recognition for the substantial contribution of a guest in the field of teaching or research. It is also an expression of the appreciation the institution has for the collaboration with the recipient. Prof. Rüsen has been the lecturer and moderator of the annual Family Business Forum, which is organized by the Institute of Business and Regional Economics (IBR) of the university.

The Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts is one of seven universities of applied sciences in Switzerland. It was founded in 1997 under the Intercantonal Council of the University of Applied Sciences and Arts of Central Switzerland (FHZ). The Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts fulfils its mandate in the four areas of education, continuing and executive education, applied research and development, and services. The bachelor’s and master’s degree programmes follow the requirements of business, culture and civil society and prepare students for the needs of the job market. Because of its research activities and specialised services, the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts is an important and reliable partner for enterprises in the private sector, federations/associations and public authorities.

21.06.2017: WIFU lecture series with Prof. Dr. Alessandro Minichilli from Bocconi University

The Italian Experience

Rigor & RelevanceOn the 21st of June 2017, Prof. Dr. Alessandro Minichilli from Bocconi University will continue this semester’s lecture series. He will cover the topic Family firms‘ governance, strategy, and performance: the Italian Experience”.

The family business debate has originally focused its attention on the performance differences between family and non-family firms, while recently shifting attention to performance heterogeneity across different types of family enterprises. Along this avenue, the investigation of governance characteristics has been one key drivers of such heterogeneity. Related to this, recent literature and practice is delving into a better understanding of the peculiar decision-making process that drives family firms towards some strategic decisions instead of others, with their respective performance consequences.

To nurture this debate, Bocconi University has developed since 2009 a comprehensive Observatory on all the almost 10,000 family controlled firms with revenues larger than 20 million. Leveraging on the great heterogeneity of family firms characterizing the Italian context, this lecture while summarize some of the most established findings on the relations between family firms’ governance choices, strategic decisions, and firm performance. Also, some of the most updated figures on the last release 2016 of the Observatory will be presented. The lecture will end with a discussion on the generalizability of those findings to other contexts, and hence with new ideas for research and practice.

Prof. Minichilli is Associate Professor at the Department of Management and Technology at Bocconi University (Milano, Italy). His research interests cover: governance mechanisms in family-controlled companies, corporate governance and boards of directors, board evaluations, top management teams and corporate elites as well as career profiles of CEOs and leadership.

The lecture will be held in English and begins at 6 pm in the Liz Mohn Room (1.153) at Witten/Herdecke University. The participation is free of charge.

More information about the lecture series can be found in our event category.

24.05.2017: WIFU lecture series with Dr. Rania Labaki from EDHEC Business School

Emotional Dynamics

Rigor & RelevanceOn the 24th of May 2017, Dr. Rania Labaki from EDHEC Business School will start this semester’s lecture series. She will cover the topic Emotional Dynamics in the Family Business”.

Emotions are part of every family and every business. For family business members, emotions are more complex as they flow from the family to the business and vice-versa, impacting their lives, their families, and their businesses. There is currently scarce research and increasing interest on the topic of emotions in the family business. New emotional constructs are being developed, refined or adapted from other fields of research. Still, grey areas on the emergence of emotions, their transfer from one system to another, their dynamics, and their influence remain. This lecture will lay down the state of knowledge in the field towards future directions of the research agenda for scholars interested in the topic. Building on illustrative examples of family businesses, it will also suggest a tentative roadmap for family business stakeholders to help them predict, identify, analyze and address emotional dynamics for the good of personal development, family health and business sustainability.

Rania Labaki is Associate Professor of Management at EDHEC Business School where she teaches and conducts research at the intersection of the fields of finance, entrepreneurship and family business. She serves as Director of the EDHEC Family Business Centre (EFBC) and the Academic Director of the Family Business Global Executive MBA. She is actively associated with the leading international organizations specialized in family business education, research, and advising. She serves as Board Member of the International Family Enterprise Research Academy (IFERA), Scientific Committee member of FBN France, FBN Levant and Women in Family Business (WIFB), Program Committee member of the Family Firm Institute (FFI) and Advisory Board Member of the New York City Family Enterprise Centre (NYCFEC). She is also the co-editor of the Entrepreneurship Research Journal. Her current interests revolve around the relationship between the family’s emotional dynamics and the entrepreneurial and financial behavior of family businesses with a focus on the next generation.

The lecture will be held in English and begins at 6 pm in the Liz Mohn Room (1.153) at Witten/Herdecke University. The participation is free of charge.

More information about the lecture series can be found in our event category.

11.01.2017: WIFU lecture series with Prof. Dr. Anita Van Gils of Windesheim University of Applied Sciences

Innovation in Family Firms

Rigor & RelevanceOn January 11 2016, Prof. Dr. Anita Van Gils of Windesheim University of Applied Sciences will continue this semester’s lecture series. She will cover the topic Innovation in Family Firms. Prof. Van Gils is Professor of Family Enterprises at the Dutch Centre of Expertise in Family Business of Windesheim University of Applied Sciences and Assistant Professor at the Department of Organization and Strategy of Maastricht University.

In this lecture, Dr. Van Gils will discuss why a strategic focus on innovation is important and which specific challenges family firms will have to deal with in today’s fast changing economic environment. She will also discuss choices to be made with regards to the types of innovation to select and provide an overview of the findings of her research on family firms and innovation. These findings relate amongst others, to cooperative behavior in innovation projects, the important role of employees in this process and the added value of boards of directors. The session will conclude with an interactive discussion on implications for family business managers and family business researchers.

The lecture will be held in English and begins at 6 pm in the Senate Room (1.151) at Witten/Herdecke University. The participation is free of charge.

More information about the lecture series can be found in our event area.

WIFU organizes “International Family Business Research Forum” 2016

The Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU) organized the 2nd International Family Business Research Forum from 15th to 17th September 2016 in Naples and Capri.

Under the leadership of Prof. Dr. Andrea Calabrò, the WIFU organized the forum together with Prof. Alessandro Minichilli from Bocconi University and Prof. Donata Mussolino from University of Naples. National and international researchers were called to submit current papers and proposals to present them to an expert audience.

More than 51 papers/proposals were submitted and finally 23 participants from all over the world were invited to present their papers at the Forum. The format of the Forum was lively and interactive with active discussants and a written review feedback for each presenter. Another highlight was the special interaction and advice of Prof. Anita Van Gils from Windesheim University of Applied Sciences. Beside the ambitious work program, also the social program was a highlight to the participants. The promoters planned a wonderful day-trip to Capri where the participants had a chance to visit some family firms.

As result of the Forum two best papers were awarded with a prize sponsored by the WIFU:

  • BEST INSPIRATIONAL PAPER/PROPOSAL (500 €): The Janus face of CEO retention: CEO succession and performance under unity of ownership and control (Jan-Philipp Ahrens, Lorraine Uhlaner, Michael Woywode, Jan Zybura)
  • BEST PRACTICE-RELEVANT PAPER/PROPOSAL (500 €): The use of stock option in family firm (Claudia Arena, Simona Catuogno, Alessandro Cirillo, Luca Pennacchio)

Furthermore, 12 of the papers were selected to be published in a special issue of the Journal of Family Business Strategy (published in summer/autumn 2017).

The next Forum is already planned. It will take place at the Wirtschaftsuniversität in Vienna from 20th to 22nd September 2017.

2nd-family-business-research-forum

17.-25.07.2016: Chinese-German Next Generation Summerschool at WIFU

Learnings from German Family Businesses

 

From 17th to 25th July 2016 a group of 19 family business entrepreneurs and successors from Chinese family firms together with Prof. Lin Chen from Zhejiang University (Province Zhejiang, Hangzhou) visited the Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU). With this event the WIFU wanted to advance the knowledge transfer of German multi-generational family firms to Chinese family entrepreneurs. The contact to Chinese family firms developed during a research and study trip to China last year. Members of the WIFU visited more than 20 family businesses and started a co-operation with Chinese family business research institutions. The summer school was organized by the WIFU and the Zentrum Fort- und Weiterbildung. It offered stimulating mix of information, cultural events and insight into German family business culture. The group visited the following family businesses: Reifenhäuser GmbH & Co. KG, Detlef Malzers Backstube GmbH & Co. KG, Kirchhoff Automotive GmbH, Merck KgaA. Furthermore the professors of the WIFU presented one of their major research topics to the Chinese group:

18th July

Lecturer Prof. Dr. Arist von Schlippe
Topic: A short look at German family businesses;
Family Business: a fertile environment for conflict, Three incompatible logics of communication, Pragmatic paradoxes and emotional arenas

19th July
Lecturer: Prof. Dr. Andrea Calabrò
Topic: Internationalization and Growth in Family Businesses
Lecturer: Prof. Dr. Marcel Hülsbeck
Topic: Corporate Governance & Leadership

29th July

Lecturer: Prof. Dr. Tom A. Rüsen
Topic: Dynamics of crises in Family Business, Succession, Family Strategy and Shareholders Competence

As result further common activities, such as a research conference of German and Chinese family business researchers, are planned. Prof. Lin Chen welcomed this new opportunity for exchange and appreciated the efforts to give a comprehensive insight into German family business culture. And Prof. Calabrò from the WIFU stated: “It’s has been a very stimulating experience which has offered us the opportunity to welcome and actively interact with Chinese family business members. The seminars, work-groups and continuous interactions have surely triggered further thoughts, joint research-ideas and future projects. On the 19th of July, the get together between Chinese and German family business entrepreneurs has offered a unique context of exchange with a great international flavor.”

 

Chinese Summer School

Best Paper Award given to Prof. Dr. Andrea Calabrò

Family firm internationalization

 

GIKA AwardProf. Dr. Andrea Calabrò received the Best Paper Award of the Global Innovation and Knowledge Academy. The award was given to the article “Family firm internationalization: A configuration approach” that Professor Calabrò has written together with his international colleagues Sascha Kraus, Helge Mensching, Matthias Filser (University of Liechtenstein) and Cheng-Feng Cheng (Asia University).

The award was presented during the annual conference of the Global Innovation and Knowledge Academy, which took place from 20th to 23rd March in Valencia (Spain). Congratulations to the authors!

WIFU event calendar for family businesses

Events 2016

Kalender3

As of now, family businesses and all interested parties can find out about the most important, upcoming event dates 2016 on the homepage of the Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU).

The calendar of events includes not only WIFU events and WIFU cooperation, but also numerous congresses, forums and other types of events on the topics of family businesses and business families. The events aim at an intensive exchange of this type of company. On the listing of commercial training and further training was deliberately omitted.

In addition to a monthly, yearly or agenda view the calendar also provides information on the various events as well as links to the organizing universities, institutions, associations, and societies. Through a color scheme the user can directly detect matching events for him, such as scientific or practical formats.

For the events calendar, please click here.

New results from international WIFU research project released

Entrepreneurship practices of family businesses

 

 

Andrea CalabròRecognized as the most wide-spread and enduring form of business organization, family businesses have been increasingly considered as object of research studies aimed at investigating how business families pass on the entrepreneurial mind-sets and capabilities that enable their firms to create new streams of wealth across many generations, in order to achieve continued growth and continuity. The international research project STEP” (Successful Transgenerational Entrepreneurship Practices) investigates this particular issue.

The STEP project is a global research initiative that conducts research on entrepreneurial processes in family businesses and business families. The Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU) is among the pioneering universities that started this project in 2005 together with ESADE Business School (Spain), HEC Paris (France), Jönköping International Business School (Sweden), Bocconi University (Italy), University of St. Gallen (Switzerland), and Babson College (USA). Nowadays the project has a global outreach, involving 43 affiliated research institutions present in five regions in the world – Europe, Latin America, Asia, North America, and Africa. Since its inception, STEP accounts for 120 case studies of global family businesses, 16 summits, a book series with Edward Elgar Publishing on Transgenerational Entrepreneurship, and several research results at leading conferences and in international peer-reviewed journals.

From September 2013 to February 2015 all universities around the world conducted a global survey simultaneously. Under the direction of Prof Dr Andrea Calabrò, owner of the WIFU chair for Business Administration and Family Entrepreneurship, WIFU coordinated the German survey. The survey collects the point of view of family business leaders offering a quantitative dataset, thus contributing to further understand how family businesses successfully employ entrepreneurial practices. The first report, that is now completed, provides a range of information about the involved family businesses, such as size, age, industry, generations involved, ownership and control, board of directors, and entrepreneurial practices.

Detailed information about the STEP project can be found on our research pages.

The Quantitative Survey Results can be downloaded here.

WIFU is growing – Two new scholarship holders

Academic growth!

 

Since 2013, the WIFU Foundation awards annual scholarships to promising young scientists in the field of family business research. Now two new postdoctoral fellows were accepted: Dr. Thomas Urban and Dr. Axel Walther.

Thomas UrbanNew at the Chair for Leadership and Dynamics in family businesses, which is hold by the academic director of WIFU Prof. Dr. Arist Schlippe, is Dr. Thomas Urban. Dr. Urban studied History, English and Public Law at Ruhr University Bochum. After receiving his doctorate degree in modern history in 2005, he worked as a research assistant at the economic and corporate history departments of the universities of Bochum, Bonn, and Cologne. His research and teaching focused on family businesses. Examined family businesses include Franz Haniel & Cie., Tengelmann Warenhandelsgesellschaft KG and ThyssenKrupp. As a fellow of the WIFU Foundation he will be doing research on crisis strategies, daughters and community involvement of family businesses from a historical perspective.

Axel WaltherDr. Axel Walther will take up his scholarship at the Department of Business Administration and Family Entrepreneurship of Prof. Andrea Calabrò. After studying political science, business administration and sociology at the Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz, Dr. Walther worked as a researcher at the Reinhard Mohn Institute for Corporate Governance and Corporate Governance at Witten/Herdecke University. His dissertation dealt with the selection processes in management bodies from a behavioral perspective. His research interests cover the areas of strategic management, organizational behavior and behavioral corporate governance.

 

Detailed information on the scholarships of the WIFU Foundation is available here.

New WIFU research cooperation with DEG

Internationalization behavior of family businesses

 

Andrea CalabròThe Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU) is happy to announce a 3-year research cooperation with the Deutsche Investitions- und Entwicklungsgesellschaft (DEG) to investigate the internationalization behavior of family firms to China and India. Under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Andrea Calabrò – an expert in the field of internationalization – his team will develop a broad study based on 90 personal interviews with family firms from Germany, China and India. An interim report of every country involved captures the key findings of each, which will then be contrasted in the final report to provide practical implications for family firms, being or planning on going international to culturally distant markets.

Internationalizing has gained crucial relevance for German family firms over the past decades and especially being present in the two BRIC countries China and India has proven to be inevitable to many. For several reasons that range from market pressures to succession considerations, numerous family firms have already taken the step to China and/or India and the trend continues. It is vital for research and practice to further investigate the process to provide advice and enable a learning process between the different businesses and cultures. The aim of the study is to analyze the internationalization process of German family firms to China and India with a special focus on the challenges and key triggers of successfully setting up business relationships in these culturally distant but highly relevant markets. In order to not only approach this topic one way, the scope of the study also intends examining the internationalization behavior of 30 Chinese and 30 Indian family firms to German speaking countries. This way, it will be possible to find potential behavioral patterns of family firms regarding internationalization and extract key learnings for future endeavors of family firms going international.

The project is not only of highest relevance for practitioners and especially the DEG, who is specialized in supporting family firms in their internationalization process, but also for the scientific research community concerned with this topic. The team around Prof. Calabrò is highly motivated and convinced that this unique study will enhance the knowledge on internationalization of family firms and provide significant implications for the future.

We are looking forward to the cooperation!

Merry Christmas from the WIFU team!

The WIFU wishes all its friends and supporters a Merry Christmas and a good start into the year 2016.

A special thanks to our supporters and partners, without their personal, financial and substantive commitment our work would not be possible.

We look forward to make the next year equally successful with you!

Greetings from Witten

Your WIFU team!

Das WIFU wünscht frohe Weihnachten

Giovanna Campopiano awarded with FFI Honorable Mention Award

 

During the 2015 Global Conference about “Myths & Realities in the family enterprise field” hosted by the Family Firm Institute (FFI) Dr. Giovanna Campopiano was awarded the “Honorable Mention” award together with Alfredo De Massis (Lancaster University) and Francesco Chirico (Jönköping University). The honored paper is named “Firm philanthropy in small- and medium-sized family firms: The effects of family involvement in ownership and management” and was published in the Family Business Review (Vol. 27, No. 3, p. 244-258).

FFI_London 2015_Award ceremony Dr. Campopiano

Congratulations!

Taking over the Family Business – New volume added to WIFU Scientific Series

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The Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU) published the 16th volume in its “Scientific Series”.

Why do successors opt for a career in their own family business? These and other questions are examined by the latest volume of the WIFU Scientific Series “Taking over the Family Business – A Career Developmental Perspective on male and female succession” by Dr. Dominique Otten-Pappas.

The study investigated the hitherto largely ignored perspective of the successor on succession as career decision process. Grounded on family business and career development theory, insights gained from the qualitative analysis of 16 in-depth interviews with successors were used to develop a successor profiling tool. It is composed of three main elements: the succession decision as process, influences of facilitating and inhibiting factors as well as underlying successor commitment over time. A gender sensitive perspective was adopted in order to account for gender differences during tool development. The tool developed offers a practical contribution by helping young family business members to consider succession in relation to their career development.

The 16th volume of the series was published with Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht and is available on its website and in well-stocked bookstores.

WIFU among the 25 best business schools for family businesses

 

The Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU) is one of the leading centers for family business research in Germany, according to “Family Capital”.

The “Family Capital” magazine has published its list of the 25 world’s best universities in the field of family business. Besides world-famous, highly respected institutions such as Harvard Business School, Kellogg School of Management and London Business School, two German universities made it into the ranking: Witten/Herdecke University (UW/H) and Zeppelin University (Friedrichshafen). The Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU), which belongs to the Faculty of Economics of the UW/H, is the leading centre for family business studies and research in Germany. The journal praises its well established reputation and links with many of the country’s famed family businesses.

The artricle written by Family Capital can be found here.

WIFU contribution honored with IFERA Best Paper Award

Family Firm Performance

 

During this year’s IFERA conference, which took place in Hamburg from June 30 to July 3 2015, the following WIFU contribution was awarded the Best Conference Paper Award for FirstTime Presenter.

Rosalia Santulli, Andrea Calabrò and Carmen Gallucci*: How do Different TMT Configurations affect Family Firms’ Performance? The Mediating Role of Organic and Acquisitive Growth Strategic Choices.

The WIFU congratulates its winners very much and looks forward to more successful publications in international cooperation.

IFERA-Award_Calabrò, Santulli, Gallucci

*Salerno University

WIFU growth further – New Scholarshipholder at Law Chair

The WIFU is pleased to announce further academic growth

Since 2013, the WIFU-Foundation awards annual scholarships to promote young researchers in the field of family entrepreneurship. Now the second scholarship holder – Sönke Bock – was accepted at the Chair of Business Law, Labour Law and Law of Family Businesses of Prof. Dr. Katharina Uffmann. Overall, the WIFU-Foundation has thus already awarded six scholarships.

 

Sönke BockSönke Bock studied law with additional economic education at the University of Bayreuth from 2009 to 2014. As emphasis he chose business and tax law. During his studies he went through a series of internships at prestigious law firms in Munich and Kiel. For the duration of his studies at the University of Bayreuth Sönke Bock got a scholarship as part of the Max WeberProgram of Bavaria awarded by the Scholarship Foundation of the German people (Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes). He also received a scholarship from e-Fellows.net online. As a fellow of the WIFU Foundation he researches on the topic Corporate Law approaches to resolution of stalemates in the shareholders’ meeting“.

Family Business Review Best Article Award – Honorable mention for WIFU paper

 

This year’s Family Business Review Best Article Award committee has selected for honorable mention recognition the paper “Firm Philanthropy in small-and medium-sized family firms: The effects of family involvement in ownership and management”, authored by Giovanna Campopiano (WIFU), Alfredo De Massis (Lancaster University) and Francesco Chirico (Jönköping University).

The committee has expressed that “The paper is novel in that the authors investigate a part of corporate social responsibility which so far has not been analyzed, and the topic of firm-level philanthropy provides a scholarly reach beyond the field of family firm research. The empirical methods are sound and recognize the heterogeneity among family firms.”

Congratulations to the winners. The awards will be presented at the 2015 Family Firm Institute (FFI) Global Conference in October.

 

Article:

Campopiano, G., De Massis, A., & Chirico, F. (2014). Firm philanthropy in small- and medium-sized family firms: The effects of family involvement in ownership and management. Family Business Review, 27(3), 244-258.

The article can be found on the homepage of the Family Business Review.

 

 

12.-13.06.2015: WIFU hosts 1st International Family Business Forum

Call for Papers

 

It is our pleasure to announce the first International Family Business Forum which will be held at Witten/Herdecke University and is hosted by the Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU) on the 12th and 13th of June 2015.

The aim of this Forum is to try to reconcile such negative and positive views of family firms, understanding the role of theories and contexts in guiding more insightful research on family firms. Indeed, theory is crucial for the advancement of a field, as it allows scholars to explain and predict phenomena of interest.

We encourage international scholars – with particular attention to PhD students and young researchers – to submit their ideas and work in progress at different stages. Given the developmental nature of the Forum, we encourage submissions of:

  1. Research ideas/proposals
  2. Extended abstracts
  3. Draft of papers
  4. Full papers

All submissions should be sent electronically to: andrea.calabro@uni‐wh.de. The deadline is May 1st 2015. Authors will be notified on the acceptance by May 5th 2015. More details can be found in the official Call for Papers.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact Prof. Calabrò directly. Feel free to share this call for papers with anyone whom you think might be interested.

Calendar of events for family businesses – Now available!

Important dates for 2015

 

Kalender3From now on family businesses and other interested parties can catch up on the most important, still pending event dates in 2015 on the homepage of the Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU).

In addition to institute and cooperation events, the calendar includes numerous conferences, forums and other types of events regarding family businesses and business families. The recorded events give the opportunity for an intensive exchange of this type of business. The collection of commercial and further training was deliberately omitted.

In addition to a monthly, annual and agenda view the calendar also provides information on the various events as well as links to the organizing universities, institutions, associations and clubs. By an appropriate color scheme, it is also possible to directly detect the matching events such as scientific or practical formats.

The event cakender can be found here (in German only, international events are included).

Honorary Professorship for Dr. Tom A. Rüsen

 

Tom RüsenThe Faculty of Economics of Witten/Herdecke University decided to honor Dr. Tom A. Rüsen, Executive Director of the Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU), with the title of an “Honorary Professor”. With this act, the involvement of Dr. Rüsen in the university’s education is appreciated which he conducts in addition to his CEO position at WIFU and WIFUFoundation.

For more than six years, he regularly offers at least one course per semester. Thus, the RESA” seminars for restructuring and reorganization of companies are both liked and feared among students, because they require a commitment that goes beyond what is normally required in a seminar: Based on a real case students have to muster all their skills in order to design a recovery plan for the endangered companies from Saturday afternoon until the next morning a situation in which one’s own ability, but also the deficitsare very clearly demonstrated to the participants.

As part of the 21st sponsor’s meeting of the WIFU in Dortmund, Dr. Rüsen was officially awarded the honorary professorship by the management of Witten/Herdecke University. After the introductory words of the president, Dr. Martin Butzlaff, Prof. Dr. Rudolf Wimmer, Vice President of the University and founding professor of WIFU, held a moving laudation. Prof. Dr. Birger Priddat, Dean of the Faculty, handed the official certificate to Dr. Rüsen.

The WIFU is delighted with the deserved honor and congratulates its managing director most heartily.

 

New scholarship holder at WIFU researches on legal forms of family businesses

 

Tobias Begemann Since 2013, the WIFU Foundation annually awards scholarships to promising young scientists in the field of family entrepreneurship. Tobias Begemann, the first scholarship holder at the Chair of Business Law, Labour Law and Law of Family Businesses hold by Prof . Dr. Katharina Uffmann, was accepted at the end of 2014.

Tobias Begemann studied  law at the University of Bayreuth from 2006 to 2011. He took an additional education in economics and completed a specific language training in English. After a very successful completion of the first state examination, he completed his legal preparatory training in Berlin with stops at the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology, in a prestigious international law firm and in the legal department of a company in Sydney (Australia). After completing his preparation service with the second state examination, he was accepted as a scholarship holder of the WIFU Foundation. He will now conduct research on “The SE & Co. KGaA as a legal form for family businesses”.

You can learn more about Tobias Begemann on his employee profile.

Detailed information on the WIFU scholarships can be found here.

The associated press release is filed in our PR section.

Award for outstanding teaching – Prof. Dr. Katharina Uffmann honored

The Student Council of the Law Faculty, University of Bayreuth, awarded the prize for outstanding teaching to Prof. Dr. Katharina Uffmann.

The prize is awarded annually since 2011 to (former) academic staff in the fields of law and economics and honors the outstanding commitment of the person concerned in university teaching. The winners are nominated by all students of the Faculty of Law and selected in a public meeting of the Student Council. The students honor those faculty members who conduct an especially high effort in their lectures to convey complex or strenuous topics.

Prof. Dr. Uffmann has excelled last year in a special way,” said Jonas Lieuwe Jousma, CEO Bundesverband rechtswissenschaftlicher Fachachaften e.V. Hardly anyone achieved to convey content in a way that, on the one hand, increases interest in the topic, and on other hand, with such joy and commitment that no student wants to miss a lecture “And further: “The students feel taken seriously in her lectures, appreciate her excellent preparation and student-friendly way. The fact that the students still were challenged nevertheless let them realize even clearer how quickly they received new knowledge. In recognition of this achievement, the Student Council is proud to give this award to Prof. Uffmann.”

Preisverleihung Prof. Uffmann_klein

 

 

Prof. Andrea Calabrò appointed Associate Editor for the Journal of Family Business Strategy

Two Honors for Family Business Researcher

 

AC_kleinBecause of his outstanding scientific achievements, especially on an international levelProf. Andrea Calabrò, Ph.D. was appointed Associate Editor of the “Journal of Family Business Strategy“. The journal was first published in 2005, and has been published by the leading scientists in the field of family business research ever since. It is one of the highest quality and most influential journals in its field.

We are also proud to announce that Prof. Calabrò was awarded the “Excellent Reviewer Award 2014″ of the international journal Family Business Review”. The annually awarded “Excellent Reviewer Award” distinguishes members of FBR editorial review board who have rendered outstanding performance in reviewing papers. This year the award went to Witten/Herdecke University among others.

For more information, please contact Jessika Koentjoro as well as the websites of the Family Business Review (https://fbr.sagepub.com/) and the Journal of Family Business Strategy (https://www.journals.elsevier.com/journal-of -family-business strategy /).

12.11.2014: WIFU Lecture Series with Prof. Gupta-Biener

“Analyzing Growth of Family Businesses in India“

 

Rigor & RelevanceOn November 12, 2014 Prof. Dr. Neena Gupta-Biener of the FH Joanneum in Graz will hold the opening lecture on this semester’s lecture series. She will cover the topic Analyzing Growth of Family Businesses in India”. Prof. GuptaBiener holds the Chair of International Management at FH Joanneum Graz. Her research interests include cultural influences on management styles and management decisions, tacit knowledge management in transnational corporations, and intercultural communication.

The lecture will be held in English and begins at 6pm in the Senate Room (1.151) at Witten/Herdecke University. The participation is free of charge.

More information about the lecture series can be found in our event area.

 

WIFU research output – New publications in JBE and FBR

Giovanna CampopianoIt is our pleasure to announce that two new publications were realized in high-quality top journals (Journal of Business Ethics and Family Business Review) as of lately. Both articles were written by Giovanna Campopiano, one of our assistant professors.

The two articles explore a very important topic in family business research as they focus on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and family philanthropy. The two articles have high practical implications and the knowledge on this topic can be used to do further analyses within German family businesses in the near future.

The articles in detail:

1- Campopiano, G.: Corporate Social Responsibility Reporting: A Content Analysis in Family and Non-family Firms. In: Journal of Business Ethics, DOI 10.1007/s10551-014-2174-z.

The Journal of Business Ethics has an impact factor of 1.253 and a FT 40. It is one of the 40 journals used by the Financial Times in compiling the prestigious Business School research rank.

2- Campopiano, G.: Firm Philanthropy in Small- and Medium-Sized Family Firms: The Effects of Family Involvement in Ownership and Management. In: Family Business Review, DOI: 10.1177/0894486514538450.

The Family Business Review has an impact factor of 2.622 and is one of the leading journals in the research field of family businesses.

 

The articles are available through the Journals’ web sites:

New WIFU image trailer – Watch now!

An Institute made by family businesses for family businesses

 

The WIFU is very happy and very proud to present his first very own image trailer. The film was made in spring and summer of 2014 with assistance from our professors, friends and sponsors. Special thanks goes to our agency CP/COMPARTNER, without their help the realization of the film would not have been possible.

The image trailer can be found either in our video section here on the homepage or on our very own You Tube channel.

 

Enjoy watching!

International Family Business Research – New interactive WIFU map

As of now, scientists, family business owners and anyone interested can get information about the most important international research institutions in the field of family businesses on the homepage of the Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU).

As a pioneer and oldest research institution on the subject of family businesses in Germany, the WIFU sees it as its task to ensure transparency in this area. With the map to the leading universities, institutes and institutions worldwide it would like to give a global view on the one hand and on the other hand contribute to the formation of global research network in the field of family business.

The map includes not only a world view but also a list of all research institutions sorted by the respective countries. In addition to the address information of the respective facilities, the individual contact persons are listed with their contact information. In addition to the event calendar the research map is another offering with which the WIFU would like to expand its services for family entrepreneurs, scientists, media representatives and other interested parties.

The map is available here.

Map

Private Equity in Family Businesses – New WIFU article in Journal of Family Business Strategy

“Stepping into the buyers’ shoes”

 

The new article, published by Olivver Ahlers (WIFU), Andreas Hack (WIFU) and Franz W. Kellermanns (University of North Carolina), deals with the topic of Private Equity Investments in family businesses.

An increasing number of families are selling their businesses to private equity (PE) investors. A key question is what the family firm is worth without the family as part of the business. The article provides a buyers’ perspective on the valuation of the family firm and argues that prior family involvement provides the PE buyer with a distinct landscape of real options that require consideration. While the buyer gains real options for external (economic) value creation as a result of family departure, family exit after the sale triggers a loss of family dependent real options, which may subsequently reduce economic value for the new owner. Consequently, these two opposing effects need to be considered when accounting for the central role of the family and whether these effects result in an increased or decreased valuation of family firms.

The article is available via the internet page of the Journal of Family Business Strategy.

New publication in WIFU Scientific Series: Buyouts of family businesses

Family businesses can successfully survive the generational change even without successors

 

Cover Band XVThe Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU) publishes the now 15th volume in the “Scientific Series about Family Businesses.

Goal of many family businesses is to sustain their business throughout generations. The transfer of ownership and leadership from one generation to the next means continuity and should secure the future. But therein lays a paradox. The goal of longevity is threatened precisely by the process that is inevitable for the longevity: the succession. On the one hand companies experience stability by the succession. On the other hand, the continuation of the current strategy may threaten the existence of family businesses.

The different ways that family businesses choose for their future security, is examined by the new volume of the WIFU Scientific Series “Buyouts of family businesses corporate governance, strategic change and growth” by Thomas Götzen. The author focuses on the increasingly popular form of succession in the context of buyouts, i.e. the takeover of the company by employees or external managers. The results show how the transfer of ownership and management to non-family members can trigger a strategic change and affect the growth of the family business.

The book is available on the homepage of the publisher Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht.

 

Newly appointed professorship – Katharina Uffmann takes over WIFU law chair

Legal aspects in family businesses

 

Witten/Herdecke University appoints Prof. Dr. Katharina Uffmann to the chair of commercial law, employment law and family law of the Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU).

Since May 1, 2014 Katharina Uffmann supports the team of the Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU). After studying law with additional economic education at the University of Bayreuth and the passing of both legal state exams in Bavaria (2003 and 2006), she worked as a research assistant at the Chair for civil law, labor, tax and social law at the University of Bayreuth until April 2014. In 2009 Katharina Uffmann earned her doctorate at Bayreuth University with honors, where she also habilitated in February 2014 for the subjects civil law, labor law, commercial and company law as well as capital market law. With her interdisciplinary postdoctoral thesis “Interim Management” she has entered new territory from a legal perspective. The temporary employment of external specialists and managers is a largely unknown field in jurisprudence despite its widespread use. Prof. Uffmann has firstly explored, explained and systematized this economic phenomenon from a legal perspective. With her habilitation topic she has also built a bridge to legal issues of family businesses.

The teaching and research at WIFU Katharina Uffmann will support, particularly in the following areas of law: The Civil Law, the individual and collective labor law as well as the commercial, corporate and capital market law. Her research interests lie in the field of law of general business conditions, legal issues of flexible forms of employment, as well as issues of corporate governance and compliance, in each case specifically for family businesses.

Detailed information about the research and teaching area for business law, labor law and family businesses, can be found here.

 

Economics Faculty awards honorary doctorate to Prof. Sharma Pramodita

 

The Faculty of Economics of Witten/Herdecke University awarded Prof. Dr. Pramodita Sharma from the University of Vermont witha an honorary doctorate together with the Witten Institute for Family (WIFU) on June 24, 2014.Around 80 international invited guests appeared to attend the ceremony in the auditorium of Witten/Herdecke University on Tuesday night. The ceremony was opened by Prof. Dr. Martin Butzlaff, President of Witten/Herdecke University, and Dr. Tom A. Rüsen, executive director of the WIFU, who greeted the honorary doctor and all guests cordially.

Prof. Dr. Arist Schlippe, academic director of WIFU, gave a heartfelt and emotional speech in honor of the guest of honor, in which he praised the academic, but especially the personal commitment of Prof. Sharma. Afterwards the Dean of the Faculty of Economics Prof. Dr. Birger P. Priddat presented Prof. Sharma with the certificate of appointment, who gratefully accepted this special award. In her subsequent lecture she gave a detailed insight into the past, present and future of international family business research.

Representing the family businesses, Dr. h. c. Helmut Kostal (Leopold Kostal GmbH & Co. KG) praised the guest of honor and explained how her work affects entrepreneurial practice and what specific assistance he could draw for his own succession process from it.

Ehrenpromotion_Gruppenbild

In the picture (from left to right): Prof. Dr. Birger Priddat, Dr. h. c. Helmut Kostal, Prof. Dr. Martin Butzlaff, Prof. Dr. Dr. h. c. Pramodita Sharma, Prof. Andrea Calabrò, Ph. D., Prof. Dr. Katharina Uffmann, Prof. Dr. Marcel Hülsbeck, Prof. Dr. Arist von Schlippe, Dr. Tom A. Rüsen

25.06.2014: Rigor & Relevance Lecture with Dr. Christina Lubinski, Copenhagen Business School

Psychological Ownership in Family Business: A Historical Perspective

 

Rigor & RelevanceOn June 25 2014 Dr. Christina Lubinski of the Copenhagen Business School, Denmark will hold the opening lecture of this summer semester’s Rigor & Relevance Lecture Series with her ​​presentation on the topicPsychological Ownership in Family Business: a Historical Perspective. Dr. Lubinski is an Associate Professor at the Centre for Business History of the Department of Management, Politics and Philosophy at Copenhagen Business School. Her research interests include the historical perspective of companies, international corporate governance and family business research in general.

Christina Lubinskis lecture deals with formal and informal characteristics of concentrated family ownership. The historian shows how ownership structures changed in post-war German family businesses and what consequences this had for the success and failure of German family businesses. She also analyzes the property not only as the basis of contractual relations, but also discusses how the family as a social institution influenced owner practices and the self-understanding of shareholders. Family members have by no means necessarily the same interests. Conflicts of interest and consensus decision making, however, are embedded in a family, which seperates family ownership fundamentally from different other ownership structures. In order to understand psychological ownership in family businesses Dr. Lubinski studies family businesses in their concrete historical context, namely the Federal Republic of Germany from 1945 to present. Using selected case studies she also shows the influence of family dynamics and early socialization experiences on the development of German family businesses.

We would be pleased to welcome you in Witten/Herdecke University. The lecture is being held in English and will start at 6 pm in room 1.151.

Please find more information about the lecture series here.

22.05.2014: Club of Family Businesses “Central Ruhr Region”

Succession in family businesses Secure a life’s work, create a common future

 

FrühlingTogether with the Chamber of Commerce Central Ruhr the Witten Institute for Family (WIFU) invites to the “second Club of Family Businesses Central Ruhr Region”, which takes place on Thursday, May 22 2014 at 5 pm. at Friedr. Lohmann GmbH in Witten.

The “Club of Family Businesses Central Ruhr Region”, launched jointly with the Chamber of Commerce, dedicates each event to a typical issue of family businesses or business families. The second event the issue of succession in family businesses is illuminated.
The “Club of Family Businesses Central Ruhr Region” is aimed exclusively at members of business families and family businesses. We look forward to welcoming you at this event.

The information flyer including registration form can be found here. (German only.)

05.06.2014: Forum for Family Business – Women in Family Businesses

An empire is easy to rule – compared to a family!

 

The Forum for Family covers a typical question of family businesses or business families at every event. Following the concept of the Witten family business conferences, the Forum aimes exclusively at entrepreneurs and family members. Thus, a specially protected and private space for exchange is created, without irritation caused by the presence of, for example, counselors or press representatives.

The 22nd Forum for Family Business is called “Women in family – daughters in succession” and will take place on 05.06.2014 at Dr.-Ing. Ulrich Esterer GmbH & Co. KG in Helsa.

In addition to the practical contributions of Julia Esterer (Dr.-Ing. Ulrich Esterer GmbH & Co. KG ) and Caroline Countess of Wallwitz (fens Construction Company Ltd.) Dr. Tom A. Rüsen and Dominique Otten-Pappas will give an insight into the structures , as well as the processes of succession in the careers of various female and male successors. In a workshop unit the participants can examine their own position in the company and their attitude towards it. For agenda, registration form and more information see the information flyer.

 

Register now!

The information flyer, including registration form for the Forum can be found here. (German form only.)
Detailed information about the event series are available here.

The WIFU grows – New scholar at the WIFU

Junior scientist starts her work at the WIFU

 

gimenez_daniela_01The Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU) is glad to announce that a new scholar will now support the research and teaching area for Management and Entrepreneurship of Family Businesses.

The WIFU Foundation allocates each year scholarships for PhDs and Postdocs to promote excellent junior scientists in the research field of family entrepreneurship. The second scholar has been accepted by the WIFU Foundation. Daniela Giménez is supervised by Prof. Andrea Calabrò, Ph.D. at the Chair for Business Administration and Family Entrepreneurship since November 2013.

The research field of Daniela Giménez concentrates mainly on the fields of Management and Entrepeneurship of Family Businesses. Her research focus is the role of women in the strategy formulation and in management of family-owned small and medium-sized enterprises. In the respective research project she analyses on the one hand the importance of female leadership roles on a theoretical and empirical level to understand the phenomenon and its impact. On the other hand the research results are to be transferred and implemented to enhance strategies in the management of family businesses.

Daniela Giménez finished her Master in Business Economics at the Autnomous University of Barcelona in Spain. Furthermore she achieved an “International Master in Business Management” at the same university and a “Master Executive in Logistic Management” at the Escuela de Organización Industrial in Madrid, Spain.

The press release can be downloaded here.

Journal for Family Business Strategy – Special Issue “Family Business and Regional Development”

Call for Paper

 

In 2014 the Journal of Family Business Strategy will publish a special issue entitled “Family Business and Regional Development”. Among the guest editors is Rodrigo Basco, scholarship holder of the WIFU foundation. We would like to cordially invite you to consider participating in the special issue. The submission deadline is September 15th 2014.

The aim of this special issue is to examine the role of family firms in regional economic environments and to enhance our understanding of the ways family firms may (or may not) contribute to regional economic growth and development. This special issue will consider qualitative and quantitative empirical studies, case studies, and more theoretical and conceptual research contributions. The cross-disciplinary nature of current research on family firms suggests that a new understanding of the role family firms play in regional economic development will likely come from a melding of theory and research across fields like regional economics, regional studies, entrepreneurship, geography, business, management, political science, psychology, and sociology.

Please do not hesitate to contact Rodrigo Basco for more information. You may also access the Homepage of the Journal of Family Business Strategy.

New Master in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics

International studies

 

We are proud to announce that Witten/Herdecke University is now launching a new Master’s program in “Philosophy, Politics, and Economics” (MA-PPE) starting in April 2014. It is offered in English only and it is open to outstanding students from all over the world who are interested in excellent trans-disciplinary education on organizations and institutions in a global perspective. At the center of the program are three thematic areas: ‘Global Economic Development’, ‘Global Governance’, and ‘Philosophy and Society’. The program prepares the students for leading positions in political and social institutions and in NGOs, for jobs in organization development, for working in politics and economics-related consultancy and in other positions requiring a high degree of analytical competence at the interface between economics and politics. The program also constitutes an excellent basis for entering a Ph.D. program on issues at the interface of economics and political science, political philosophy and philosophy of economics.

International studies

 

The students receive high-quality training to develop an understanding of how economics and politics are embedded in social, political, and cultural affairs, and to become aware of the philosophical and ethical groundings of these. Some of the questions addressed by the program are: How do institutions and organizations shape economic and political processes? What is the role of transnational institutions and organizations in economic and political change? Which functions can informal and social networks fulfill in this context? What are the philosophical foundations of current economic and political science? How can the social contract of national communities be translated into wider international circumstances?

The best possible standards in teaching are offered by Witten/Herdecke University with its unique didactics: Students are encouraged to express their preferences for the designing of the courses, the classes are purposely kept small, and the ratio of professors to student is one of the best in Germany. An integral part of the program is the “Studium fundamentale”, which allows the students to broaden their intellectual horizon through a wide range of courses on history, music, archeology, sociology, art, and literature.
The city of Witten lies within the “Ruhrgebiet”, Germany’s largest urban agglomeration of some eight and a half million citizens. It combines a history of early industrialization with a beautiful landscape consisting of the Ruhr River, lakes, and wooded valleys, offering various sports and leisure opportunities. Its rich cultural life is even outreached by the opportunities in music, theatre, and arts in the directly adjacent cities of Bochum and Dortmund. Its central location allows travelling to the cities of Köln, Bonn, Frankfurt, Hamburg, and Berlin within 1 to 4 hours.

Witten/Herdecke will admit a very limited number of students every semester. Scholarships and the “Inverted Generations Contract” provide opportunities to finance the studies.

Please spread the word and help us to get applications from the best students from all over the world. Current applications will be accepted from November 1, 2013 through December 31, 2013 for the upcoming semester (starting April 2014).

Please find more information here.

 

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact the university:

Prof. Dr. Joachim Zweynert (International Political Economy): joachim.zweynert@uni-wh.de

Prof. Dr. Jens Harbecke (Philosophy of Science and Methodology of Economics): jens.harbecke@uni-wh.de

Prof. Dr. André Schmidt (Macroeconomics and International Trade): andre.schmidt@uni-wh.de .

Administrative Issues: monika.olivo@uni-wh.de

16.10.2013: Prof. Dr. Michael Woywode holds “Rigor & Relevance” lecture

CEO Successions in Family Firms: Should Predecessors Stay Active or Cultivate Roses?

 

Rigor & RelevanceProf. Dr. Michael Woywode of Mannheim University will hold the opening lecture of this winter semester’s “Rigor & Relevance” Lecture Series. Prof. Woywode is chair holder of the  “Lehrstuhls für Mittelstandsforschung und Entrepreneurship” and leader of the “ifM Institut für Mittelstandsforschung” at Mannheim University.

On the 16th of October 2013 Prof. Woywode will speak about the topic “CEO Successions in Family Firms: Should Predecessors Stay Active or Cultivate Roses?” Employing a unique data set on CEO successions, he analyzes the circumstances under which departing CEOs stay active within their enterprise subsequent to a CEO succession and highlight enterprise performance implications. He finds that the likelihood of predecessor activity is increased by family succession, nepotism and tacit knowledge, but reduced by the successor’s human capital,  successor’s ownership and corporate age. The performance impact of prolonged predecessor activity is positive for successors with low human capital, but turns negative with increased successor human capital. This negative impact is amplified by the degree of influence of the preceding CEO.

The lecture will be held in English and starts at 6 pm. in room 1.151 at Witten/Herdecke University. Admission is free.

Please find further information about the lecture in our event section.

 

New publication in the WIFU Scientific Series – Now available (in German only)!

Rhetoric as Instrument of Management in Family Businesses

The latest volume of the WIFU Scientific Series “Atmospheric Management – Rhetoric as Instrument of Management in Family Businesses” by Guido Hardieck is available since 17.07.2013. The 11th volume deals intensively with topics about efficient management in family businesses.

The question how entrepreneurial realities are shaped is not only for family businesses important. But especially in this entrepreneurial form where spoken language has a special importance it is an essential task for management to convince by means of language. These often neglected aspects of management are treated in the new volume of the WIFU scientific publication series. The aim of the publication is to create an analysis instrument as well as means for entrepreneurs to design speeches – the so called Scenic Radar. The instrument has three room axes that are deducted from conflict lines in family businesses and that integrate them at the same time: emotionality vs rationality, tradition vs progression and constructivity vs destructivity. According to the focus of the speech (parts) the Radar deflects or rather guarantees more or less concisely an orientation. The book is a rhetoric guideline for wording and style. It aims to give strategic knowledge for rhetoric mediation that is set before a speech.

Further information are available in the section „WIFU Scientific Series“. The book is available via the website of Vandehoeck & Ruprecht and in all book stores.

The Internationalization of Family Firms – New article in Family Business Review

The Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU) is pleased to announce that Professor Andrea Calabrò, Ph.D and Thilo Pukall, both from the Chair for Business Administration and Family Entrepreneurship, have  published an article in the renowned journal Family Business Review in June, which is the leading journal for family business research (2012 Journal Citation Reports® ranking: no. 19 out of 116 journals in business research, impact factor 2.622).

Professor Calabrò, Ph.D. and Thilo Pukall investigate in their article the current research status of the field of family firm internationalization. Based on a review and critical examination of 72 journal articles published from 1980 to 2012, the authors find that the literature focuses on four themes – family firm heterogeneity, internationalization processes, relationships and networks, and firm-level resources and capabilities – but that research findings are inconsistent. To reconcile inconsistent findings, the paper provides a theoretical framework for understanding the internationalization of family firms.

The framework proposes that internationalization is driven by triggers such as external board members and incoming generations, on the one hand, but is slowed down by the reluctance of family principals (family firm owners) to commit to the establishment of partnerships and the necessary learning about foreign markets. In the framework, the impact of such triggers and the reluctance to engage in international markets is reduced or enlarged depending on how family firm owners frame the performance of the business. If the business is performing below aspirations, family principals will be more likely to engage in internationalization efforts in order to improve the situation compared to non-family firms. If the firm is performing above aspirations, family business owners will be more likely to avoid internationalization in order to safeguard the current performance in comparison to non-family firms.

Find more information and a free download here: fbr.sagepub.com

Picture - Calabrò & Pukall

Shareholder competence in family businesses – Complete study available now!

Property entails obligations – across generations

 

Property entails obligations. This is set out in the German Constitution. Property also refers to ownership of businesses and shares. Therefor the Constitution addresses shareholders as business owners. The awareness of the role shareholders play specifically in family businesses and of their relevance has changed considerably in recent years. Competent shareholders may be valuable to a company and contribute to its survival, just as incompetent shareholders can jeopardize the company with bad decisions and lack of expertise.

Family shareholders frequently perceive their share in the business as borrowed heritage which they cultivate, preserve and develop with a very special sense of loyalty and concern.They need a wide range of specific core competences to perform their role as shareholders properly and do more than just rubber-stamping decision papers and receiving dividends. This expertise, these skills and abilities are required to successfully manage and preserve the family business and assets on a long-term basis.

Shareholder competences and their development are relatively new issues for family businesses and business families but nevertheless of great relevance in ensuring the survival of this type of business and successful transfer to subsequent generations. Little practice-oriented research has been conducted so far to these important and urgent topics. The purpose of the study at hand which is unique and the first of its kind in Germany is to highlight these important issues and underline the tremendous value which owner families may generate through systematic training and further education of owners. The study examines the following aspects:

  • requirement profile of shareholders in family businesses, and the challenges involved
  • specific competences and functions of active family shareholders, and ways to prepare them for the representation of their owner interests
  • existing experience with targeted training in and expansion of shareholder competence in business families
  • demands on competence training for shareholders, and how to meet them

The results of the study cast a positive light on attitudes regarding shareholder competence and measures initiated in family businesses in the German-language area to strengthen such competence. Most of the family businesses have realized the significance of shareholder competences and taken the required steps to promote a competence development. But the structures and degree of organization and professionalization of competence development are still not very pronounced in many of the owner families analysed in this study. This applies in particular to mature and old family businesses who seem to have the biggest backlog demand for competence development. This is why we offer suggestions for improvement and recommendations for action.

We hope that you will enjoy reading our study.

The complete english study is available for download in our Working Paper section.

WIFU team at EURAM 2013 Annual Meeting

Democratising Management – Istanbul 26th-29th June 2013

 

WIFU and faculty members as well as PhD Students from Witten/Herdecke University attended the European Academy of Management (EURAM) 2013 Annual Meeting (26-29 June Istanbul, Turkey) which has offered a platform to discuss the opportunities, the challenges and the processes related to democratising management across the wide range of topics related to this notion in a special setting between Europe and Asia. They have been involved in various activities such as: authors, discussants, chairpersons, doctoral colloquium attendees, track organizers, strategic interest group chair and executive committee member.

Organisers and attendees can look back on a very successful event. More information can be found here www.euram2013.com

foto

 

On the picture, from left to right: Prof. Andrea Calabrò, Ph.D (WIFU), Mariateresa Torchia, Ph.D (RMI), Nadine Wälder (RMI), Thilo Pukall (WIFU), Hannah Möltner (RMI), Axel Walther (RMI), Prof. Morten Huse, Ph.D. (RMI).

 

 

10.07.2013: Lecture “Turkish Family Businesses”

Between Rigor and Relevance in Family Business Research

 

Rigor & RelevanceProf. Dr.  Sibel Yamak Professor of Management and Director of the Social Sciences Graduate School at Galatasaray University. She has a doctorate degree in Organisation Theory from Bogazici University. Her publications which focus on business elites, top management teams, governance and corporate social performance have been published in peer reviewed journals such as British Journal of Management, European Management Journal, International Journal of Hospitality Management, Corporate Governance, Business and Society. In 2007, she received Emerald LiteratiNetwork award. She was a visiting scholar in different universities such as the Panthéon Sorbonne University, Louis Pasteur University, Manchester University among others. She is an editorial board member of British Journal of Management, Society and Business Review and Yönetim Araştırmaları Dergisi.

On the 10th of July Prof. Yamak will hold a lecture about “Turkish Family Businesses Groups; between state dependence and patriarchy” as part of the WIFU lecture series “Rigor and Relevance”. The evidence provided by a series of studies on family businesses will be presented in this seminar.  First, the characteristics of Turkish family business groups will be displayed. The impact of context in terms of state dependence and patriarchy will be portrayed and the repercussions on the structure and internal functioning of family businesses will be assessed. The staffing of upper echelons in family firms, corporate social responsibility practices, networking patterns are some aspects that will be illustrated during the seminar.

The lecture will be held in English and starts at 6 p.m. in room 1.151 at Witten/Herdecke University. The participation is free of charge.

18.07.2013: 18. Forum for Family Business – Growing Shareholder Group

We take the bull by the horns!

 

True to this motto each event in the event series „Forum for Family Business“ deals with a specific problem concerning family businesses or business families respectively. According to the concept of the Witten Congress for Family Businesses this forum addresses exclusively entrepreneurs or family members of family businesses. This creates a special protected atmosphere and a private space for the exchanging of ideas and information, without irritations through the presence of e.g. consultants or representatives of the press.

The 18. Forum for Family Business  deals with the topic “Growing Shareholder Group – Secure Decision-Making Ability – Support Solidarity”. The event discusses mainly the basic question how to handle a growing shareholder group and secure at the same time a balance between enterprise, family and ownership.

Apart from presentations from practice by Dr. C. L. Theodor Wupperman (Speaker of the Management Board of Wuppermann AG), Mattäus Niewodniczanski (Managing Director of the Bitburger Holding) and Matthias Beggerow (Member of the Shareholder Committee and Supervisory Board of the Bitburger Holding) there will also be expert presentations of the WIFU. Prof. Dr. Arist von Schlippe will explain fundamental questions that will arise while the shareholder group of a family business continues to grow. Torsten Groth will finally present by means of a best practice example the five core principles of a functioning (large) shareholder group.

 

Register now!

Flyer incl. registration form is available here.
Detailed information on the event series is available here.

24.06.2013: Presentation on the topic „Facilitation 2. Order – Application of systemic principles on social systems”

We cordially invite you to join the presentation on Monday, 24.06.2013 with the title „Facilitation 2. Order – Application of systemic principles on social systems”

The consultant and group moderator Helga Brüggemann (Systemic Consultation Duesseldorf) will describe the practical side of systems-theoretical knowledge in her long-time work with large social systems. Her major application areas are large German Family Businesses. In this context she is an expert in group interventions.

Further information about the work of Ms Brueggemann is available here:

www.systemische-beratung-duesseldorf

Topic: Facilitation 2. Order – Application of systemic principles on social systems
Expert: Helga Brüggemann
Date: 24.06.2013
Time: 18:00 – 19:00
Location: Universität Witten/Herdecke, Room 1.152

The presentation will be held in German. Participation is, of course, free of charge.

Study Shareholder Competences – Summary available now!

Property entails obligations – across generations

 

Property entails obligations. This is set out in the German Constitution. Property also refers to ownership of businesses and shares. Therefor the Constitution addresses shareholders as business owners. The awareness of the role shareholders play specifically in family businesses and of their relevance has changed considerably in recent years. Competent shareholders may be valuable to a company and contribute to its survival, just as incompetent shareholders can jeopardize the company with bad decisions and lack of expertise.

Family shareholders frequently perceive their share in the business as borrowed heritage which they cultivate, preserve and develop with a very special sense of loyalty and concern.They need a wide range of specific core competences to perform their role as shareholders properly and do more than just rubber-stamping decision papers and receiving dividends. This expertise, these skills and abilities are required to successfully manage and preserve the family business and assets on a long-term basis.

Shareholder competences and their development are relatively new issues for family businesses and business families but nevertheless of great relevance in ensuring the survival of this type of business and successful transfer to subsequent generations. Little practice-oriented research has been conducted so far to these important and urgent topics. The purpose of the study at hand which is unique and the first of its kind in Germany is to highlight these important issues and underline the tremendous value which owner families may generate through systematic training and further education of owners. The study examines the following aspects:

  • requirement profile of shareholders in family businesses, and the challenges involved
  • specific competences and functions of active family shareholders, and ways to prepare them for the representation of their owner interests
  • existing experience with targeted training in and expansion of shareholder competence in business families
  • demands on competence training for shareholders, and how to meet them

The results of the study cast a positive light on attitudes regarding shareholder competence and measures initiated in family businesses in the German-language area to strengthen such competence. Most of the family businesses have realized the significance of shareholder competences and taken the required steps to promote a competence development. But the structures and degree of organization and professionalization of competence development are still not very pronounced in many of the owner families analysed in this study. This applies in particular to mature and old family businesses who seem to have the biggest backlog demand for competence development. This is why we offer suggestions for improvement and recommendations for action.

We hope that you will enjoy reading the first summary of our study.

The complete translation of the WIFU study will be available by the end of April 3013.

The english summary is available for downloaded here.

26.-29. June 2013: WIFU is represented at the 13. EURAM Conference in Istanbul with an own group

Call for Papers – Family Business Research

 

On the occasion of the 13. EURAM Conference taking place in June (26.-29.) in Istanbul the Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU) is represented with an own Special Interest Group (SIG) dealing with the topic “Family Business Research”.

Within this group the following Tracks are offered:

  • Family Business Research – General Track
    Track Chairs: Thomas Markus Zellweger, Lorraine Uhlaner, Andrea Calabrò, Eddy Laveren
  • Entrepreneurship in Family Firms: an evolutionary and longitudinal perspective – Track
    Track Chairs: Cristina Cruz, Jörn Hendrich Block, Chiara Morelli, Lucrezia Songini
  • Family Business Governance – Standing Track
    Track Chairs: Wim Voordeckers, Donata Mussolino, Jolien Huybrechts
  • Innovative Family Firms – Track
    Track Chairs: Pramodita Sharma, Carlo Salvato, Alfredo De Massis, Federico Frattini

Further information can be found on the official website of the Family Business Research SIG.

15th of May 2013: Release of new volume in our successful WIFU scientific book series

Private Equity in Family Businesses

 

On 13th March 2013 the X. volume in our WIFU scientific book series will be released. The volume by Dr. Götz Müller deals with the topic Private Equity in Family Businesses.

Investments of private equity companies in family businesses gain an increasing relevance for both parties. In order to examine this phenomenon the author looks at changes in economic performance of family businesses due to private equity investments on the basis of eight case studies. Results show that performance has changed neutrally up to positively when private equity firms acquire the majority of shares in family businesses. Minority shareholding has not shown any significant changes.

Furthermore, results indicate that the examined majority shareholdings develop a strategy to support the individual performance of management to a high extent. This is mainly due to the fact that companies adapt increasingly to changing market and environment conditions and to new ways of business operation.

Further information will be available soon under WIFU-Scientific Series. The book will be distributed via the website of the publishing house Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht and will be available in specialised book stores.

21st March 2012: „impulse wissen on tour“ – Power of Story

Stories in Family Businesses

 

On 31st March 2013 “impulse wissen on tour” will take place for the fourth time. Together with the Witten Institute for Family Business impulse invites interested persons to participate in the event “Power of Story – About the Power and Stories of Family Businesses”. Prof. Arist von Schlippe and Dr. Mirko Zwack from WIFU and also the entrepreneur Carl-Julius Cronenberg and Wilfried Neuhaus-Galladé will take part in the discussion panel. The enterprise of Mr Neuhaus-Galladé is several hundred years old.

 

 

Further information about the event are available on the website of impulse Wissen.

Participation in the event is free of charge. Due to limited number of seats we kindly ask you to register under: ontour@impulse.de. The event is also open for non-subscribers.

15.-16. February 2013: 15. Congress for Family Business at Witten/Herdecke University

Topic: Identity

On 15th and 16th February 2013 the 15th Congress for Family Business will take place at Witten/Herdecke University. Again a highly motivated and competent team of UW/H students was responsible for the organisation of the congress.

The congress with the theme “Identity” offers participating family enterprises and entrepreneurial families the opportunity for an active exchange of information and opinions and to learn from each other’s experiences.

Further information, the official flyer and registration modalities are available here:

www.familienunternehmer-kongress.de

Download our new WIFU Working Paper

Values in Family Businesses

 

The latest publication in our WIFU Working Paper Series “The transmission of values in family businesses – Stories as form of communicating cultural values” by Dr. Mirko Zwack and Prof. Dr. Arist von Schlippe deals with the question, how stories contribute to the communication of cultural values in organisations, especially in family businesses.

First of all the authors define the general conditions for the communication of values based on the theory of organisational culture. In a second step these conditions are compared to narration theory. The results are illustrated by means of different stories that participating family businesses contributed to this project. The trans-generational momentum turns these family businesses into especially interesting research objects.

The WIFU Working Paper can be downloaded under Downloads for free.

As of now the WIFU Foundation offers scholarships

Wanted: junior scientists!

 

The WIFU Foundation offers scholarships to support junior scientists in family business research. Through the allocation of PhD and Postdoc scholarships the WIFU foundation wants to promote research, education and teaching in the field of family entrepreneurship for science and practice.

 

Detailed information and respective announcements are available here.

Apart from our scholarships the WIFU offers two further job vacancies. Current information on our job announcements are available here.

05.12.2012: 15. Forum for Family Business – Family Business and India

We take the bull by the horns!

 

True to this motto each event in the event series „Forum for Family Business“ deals with a specific problem concerning family businesses or business families respectively. According to the concept of the Witten Congress for Family Businesses this forum addresses exclusively entrepreneurs or family members of family businesses. This creates a special protected atmosphere and a private space for the exchanging of ideas and information, without irritations through the presence of e.g. consultants or representatives of the press.

The 15. Forum for Family Business deals with the topic Family Businesses and India and discusses the specific challenges German family businesses in India have to face as well as the characteristics and distinctive features of Indian family businesses.

Sign up now!



Our flyer in German incl. registration form is available here.

Our flyer in English incl. registration form is available here.

Further information about our event series Forum for Family Businesses is available here.

Information on the whole range of seminars and workshops of the WIFU can be found in the category Qualification.

29.11.2012: 14. Forum for Family Businesses

We take the bull by the horns!

 

True to this motto each event in the event series „Forum for Family Businesses“ deals with a specific problem concerning family businesses or business families respectively. According to the concept of the Witten Congress for Family Businesses this forum addresses exclusively entrepreneurs or family members of family businesses. This creates a special protected atmosphere and a private space for the exchanging of ideas and information, without irritations through the presence of e.g. consultants or representatives of the press.

The 14. Forum for Family Businesses deals with the topic Family Strategy and focuses on the specific challenges of (self-)management as entrepreneurial family.

Sign up now!



Our flyer incl. the registration form for the Forum Succession Management is available here.

 

Further information about our event series Forum for Family Businesses is available here.

 

Information on the whole range of seminars and workshops of the WIFU can be found in the category Qualification.

11th of October: 13th Forum for Family Businesses

We talk about hot-button issues!

 

Along this slogan, the Forum for Family Businesses focusses on one sensitive issue which confronts the entrepreneur family or the family enterprise on each event. Following the concept of the Congress for Family Enterprises, the forum is aimed exclusively at entrepreneurs, family members and top-ranking managers of family enterprises. The event is designed to facilitate close dialogue between a maximum of 25 participants and WIFU lecturers in a private, protected atmosphere.

The 13th Forum for Family Businesses highlights the topic “Succession Managemet” and deals with the specific challenges that business families have to face during a succession process.

Sign up now!

 

Our information flyer icluding the possibility to sign up can be found here.

For detailed information about the Forum for Family Businesses please click here.

The complete seminar and workshop program of the WIFU can be found in our qualification section.

Influence of ownership structure (International Business Review)

New publication by Prof. Andrea Calabrò

 

The new paper “The influence of ownership structure and board strategic involvement on international sales: The moderating effect of family involvement” by Andrea Calabrò, Mariateresa Torchia, Thilo Pukall and Donata Mussolino is now published in the International Business Review. The review is one of the leading  journals in the field of international management.

The paper contributes to the family business and the international business literature by analysing whether and to what extent different compositions of the ownership structure and degrees of board strategic involvement impact on the level of international sales of family and non-family businesses. The results from this study show the existence, in both in family and non-family businesses, of a positive and significant relationship between foreign investors’ ownership and the level of international sales.

The complete article can be found on the homepage of the International Business Review. For any questions please contact Prof. Calabrò or Thilo Pukall.

27th of November: “Master-Day” at UW/H – Sign up now!

A question of character!

 

On Tuesday the 27th of November 2012 from 2:30 to 8:30 pm the University Witten/Herdecke invites successful students and graduates that are aiming for a master studies program in business.

Get to know the UW/H from the inside – live and authentic.
In addition to general information about our two master programs „Management (M.A.)“ and „Family Business Management (M.Sc.)“, the active dialogue between professors, alumni, students and companies will be the main point of the day.

With our first “Master-Day” we create a platform for an intensive exchange of experiences with interesting personalities from science, business and society.

Detailed information and the possibility to sign up can be found under: www.uwh.de

21.09.2012: “Dynamics of Family Businesses“ WIFU Compact Seminar for Partners/Spouses

Interaction between logics of families, shareholders and enterprises

 

The dynamics of family businesses are not only limited to the enterprise and the group of owners. Every member of the family is more or less affected by the business affairs.

The partners or spouses of entrepreneurs or shareholders play a special role in this context.

 

  • They are often not that much involved in a formal way but informally they are of high importance as they care in the background for the well-being of enterprise and family.
  • The have to balance the interests of their own (small) family or partnership and the interests of the shareholder family.
  • They have to bear actively the decisions which they often cannot influence directly.

Register now!

 

You will find our information flyer including registration form here.

Further information about the seminar is available here.

Information on our complete range of seminars and workshops is available under the category Qualification.

Farewell to red wine circles and nepotism (Handelsblatt)

Dr. Tom Rüsen dealing with advisory boards of SMEs



The image of advisory boards has changed significantly in the past years. “Today advisory boards are more a kind of ‘sparring partner’ on equal terms who are invited by companies’ bosses to voice their opinion blatantly and to participate in decision-making processes on future strategic orientations of the enterprise. Advisory board members are frequently as powerful as regular supervisory board members of listed enterprises.

“The belief that advisory boards are merely accessories is outdated for SMEs,” says Tom Rüsen. “Those who have to make significant strategic decisions on a professional level, seek more and more advice from qualified external consultants who can stand up against the owner of an enterprise.

The full article (in German only) is available at Handelsblatt Online.

07.09.2012: “Family Strategy“ WIFU Compact Seminar for Managers of Shareholder Groups

Long-term survival measures!

 

Long-term success of a family business does not only depend on corporate strategies and products. The importance of the entrepreneurial family has increased in the past years – especially when the question arises how enterprises manage success in the long term. The enterprise and the owning family have to position themselves strategically, i.e. they have to draft a family strategy and act on it. This is particularly for growing shareholder groups a complex and time-consuming challenge of organisation and management.

 

Register now!

 

You will find our information flyer including registration form here.

Further information about the seminar is available  here.

Information on our complete range of seminars and workshops is available under the category Qualification.

24.08.2012 How to draft a Family Constitution? WIFU Compact Workshop for Shareholders

Family Constitutions on the Rise!

 

More and more owning families want to formulate a constitution and word a codex in order to secure solidarity, to strengthen decision-making ability or to avoid conflicts. For this reason the WIFU offers a compact workshop for shareholders with this topic.

 

Register now!

 

You will find our information flyer including registration form here.

Further information about the seminar is available here.

Information on our complete range of seminars and workshops is available under the category Qualification.

 

 

“Performance. Attraction. Responsibility.“ – The WIFU as guest on the AGP conference in Frankfurt

Employee Share Ownership – Future-oriented concepts of leadership for SMEs

 

The joint conference of the Arbeitsgemeinschaft Partnerschaft in der Wirtschaft (AGP e.V.) and of the Commerzbank AG in Frankfurt dealt with the topic of employee share ownership for SMEs.

Under the slogan “Performance. Attraction. Responsibility.” renowned family businesses presented their share ownership models. Furthermore, experts discussed the significance of employee share ownership with regard to future economic challenges of the enterprises.

The Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU) supported the event with an expert presentation. The Managing Director of the Institute Dr. Tom A. Rüsen examined in his presentation the attraction of family business as employer from a scientific perspective. The future challenges – especially for SMEs – were outlined during the following expert panel with representatives of renowned family businesses. Due to the growing tendency of SMEs to involve employees in the enterprise by means of employee share ownership its significance but also possible constraints were particularly discussed.

The detailed presentation of Dr. Rüsen is available on demand.

 

 

Deloitte Axia-Award 2012 and accompanying study: Growth Engine SMEs – Road to Success

The Witten Institute for Family Business is again partner of Deloitte in North-Rhine Westphalia for the Deloitte Axia-Award 2012. Each year the Axia-Award honours excellent SMEs in Germany. As the Axia-Award 2011 has been so successful, the application phase for the Axia-Award 2012 starts now. Under this year’s slogan “Growth Engine SMEs – Road to Success” Deloitte again honours SMEs that delivered an excellent and ground-breaking performance and are a motor for growth in Germany. This year the WIFU is again on the Award jury and furthermore carries out an accompanying study for North-Rhine Westphalia.

How and when to apply?

Enterprises that are at least partly family-owned can apply for the Axia-Award. Please use the online form for your application here. Additionally, the WIFU also carries out a scientific study where you can participate, irrespective of your award application. The results of this study will be analysed anonymously and serve the purpose to find implications for practice. The questionnaire for the study is available here.

You find an overview with all relevant information about the Axia-Award 2012 here and on the website of Deloitte & Touche here.

Deadline is August 17th, 2012.

Structural Risk and Mental Models in Family Businesses

Current article in the journal “Familienunternehmen und Stiftungen”

In their latest article for the journal “Familienunternehmen und Stiftungen” (edition 3/2012) Dr. Tom Rüsen (WIFU), Prof. Arist von Schlippe (WIFU) and Prof. Dr. Alberto Gimeno (ESADE Business School, Barcelona) find two explanatory approaches to emphasize the difference between family businesses and other corporate forms.

There is on the one hand the model of “structural risk” of family businesses and on the other hand the concept of “mental models” in entrepreneurial families.

The major categories of “structural risk” potentially relevant for the reduction of risks are institutionalisation, differentiation of roles, applied management practices, communication and succession. With respect to “mental models” the authors outline four different basic models: the patriarchal logic, the logic of a professional entrepreneurial family, the logic of an active owning family and the logic of a family of investors.

The full article (in German only) is available here.

The article was first published at Bundesanzeiger Verlag in the edition “Familienunternehmen und Stiftungen” (3/2012, pp 92-98)

Further information is available under www.betrifft-unternehmen.de/fus-online.

Lecture Series 04.07.2012: Prof. Frank Hoy (USA) on “Entrepreneurship in Family Business”

The Witten Institute for Family Business welcomes top-class scientists at Witten/Herdecke University

On the 04th of July 2012 at 6 pm. the institute welcomes Prof. Frank Hoy, Director of the Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Worcester, USA.
Frank Hoy is Director of Collaborative for Entrepreneurship & Innovation and Paul R. Beswick Professor of Innovation and Entrepreneurship School of Business at the Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI), Worcester, Massachusetts, USA. Professor Hoy’s research interests focus broadly on Entrepreneurship, Family Business and Franchising.

 

Under the title „Entrepreneurship in Family Business“ the Professor talks about how entrepreneurial activities – the search for and the discovery of opportunities and their profitable use – are developed and passed on in family businesses. Mainly, this involves the question how a family business supports and encourages entrepreneurial activities and entrepreneurial thinking. But the lecture will also cover the other side of this topic: How does a family business discourage those attempts and represses entrepreneurial needs of the business family? The detailed reflection of this phenomenon helps to gain insights in how a family business can support and benefit from entrepreneurial activities between generations and family members.

 

Date: 04th of July 2012
Time: 6 pm.
Place: “Senatsraum”, Witten/Herdecke University
The participation is free!

 

Please find further information about the Lecture Series in our event section.

Lecture Series 20.06.2012: Prof. Mary Barrett (Australia) on “Daughters in Family Businesses”

The Witten Institute for Family Business welcomes top-class scientists at Witten/Herdecke University

On the 20th of June 2012 at 6 pm. the institute welcomes Prof. Mary Barrett of the University of Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia.
Mary Barrett is Professor of Management of the Management Departments at the Faculty of Commerce at the award winning university. Professor Mary Barrett’s research interests focus broadly on the learning in and by organisation. The main topics are career development and leadership issues, especially in family business management and leadership and women in family business.

 

Under the title „Daughters on the stage: Women’s paths to family business leadership“ Mary Barrett talks about her own self-designed study in which she examines 13 successor processes. She asks: How women and especially daughters reached a leadership position in family businesses or even how they failed trying.

Date: 20th of June 2012
Time: 6 pm.
Place: “Senatsraum”, Witten/Herdecke University
The participation is free!

 

Please keep in mind the next date for the Lecture Series:

4th of July 2012: Entrepreneurship in Family Businesses
Speaker: Prof. Frank Hoy, Director Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Worcester, USA

 

Please find further information about the Lecture Series in our event section.

A solid base for a life’s work

A solid base for a life’s work

For family businesses the financing of their growth is more than just a question of strategy.
Dr. Tom A. Rüsen (managing director of the Witten Institute of Family Business) and Stefan Heidbreder (Foundation for Family Businesses) explain the Why in their interview with DZ Equity Partners.

Read the complete interview in the DZ Equity newsletter 2012/01 (in German only).

Publication: Family Businesses and Private Equity

The practical guideline “Family Businesses and Private Equity: Requirements, processes and results for the assignment of family-extern investors” („Familienunternehmen und Private Equity: Voraussetzungen, Prozesse und Ergebnisse beim Einsatz von familienexternen Kapitalgebern“) was published from the Witten Institute of Family Business (WIFU) of the University Witten/Herdecke and DZ Private Equity Partner in 2012.

The publishing house Haufe has now released a full and complete online article about the guideline in its category “Controller Knowledge” (“ControllerWissen”).

Abstract (in German only):
“Familienunternehmen nutzen fast ausschließlich traditionelle Finanzierungsformen. Dabei kann die Zusammenarbeit mit Private-Equity-Investoren auch für sie sinnvoll sein. Dabei sind jedoch einige Punkte sehr sorgfältig zu klären.

Was ist unter Private Equity zu verstehen?
Wie sieht der Private Equity Markt in Deutschland für Familienunternehmen aus?
Wie finden Familienunternehmen den richtigen Private-Equity-Partner?
Worauf ist bei der Zusammenarbeit mit Private Equity Investoren zu achten?”

Read the complete online article on Haufe.de (in German only).

The practical guideline “Family Businesses and Private Equity” can be downloaded here (in German only).

More practical guidelines for family businesses can be found in the download section of our page.

Family Businesses: Dear Relationship

Dr. Tom Rüsen of the Witten Institut for Family Business (WIFU) comments in Spiegel Online on the risks of relationship in business life. “The family is the greatest strength, but also the greatest risk for the enterprise.” Especially the topic ‘Succession’ bears much potential of conflict. Only 10 to 15% of family enterprises persist up to the fourth generation. The other enterprises are sold or go brankrupt. The reason of this failure are often quarrels within the family. “Up to 90% of the conflicts center on succession”, according to Rüsen. The conflict is already brewing if for example the legacy will be divided differently among siblings.

The whole article (in German only) can be found here.

Expert opinions of advisory boards are demanded

Dr. Tom Rüsen, Managing Director of the Witten Institut for Family Business (WIFU) comments in ZEIT ONLINE on the increasing importance of advisory boards. “The opinion that advisory boards have no real function is for many small and medium-sized companies outdated. Those who have to make strategic decisions on a professional level will more and more consult qualified external advisors who can also defy owners of enterprises.”

The whole article (in German only) is available here.

New WIFU-training programs for the family and family businesses

The seminars are directed primarily to the shareholders of family businesses, but also to other members of family businesses. “With this new offering of WIFU we follow the wishes of our friends and family businesses,” explains Dr. Tom A. Rüsen, managing director of WIFU.

More information you find here.

About Intuition and Intelligence to Survive in Family Businesses

“Don’t bother me with strategies. I have enough work in my own enterprise.” This citation of an interviewee marks the introduction of the thesis “Von Intuition und Überlebensintelligenz” [of intuition and intelligence of survival] of Dr. Philip Eigen, graduate of the Witten/Herdecke University and doctorate at the Institute for Family Business (WIFU).

Philip Eigen: Von Intuition und Überlebensintelligenz, Carl-Auer-Verlag, ISBN 978-3-89670-939-4

For further information please see here.

Prof. Andrea Calabrò, Phd., researches governance structures of family at the WIFU

Prof. Andrea Calabrò, Ph.D., from Italy is the new Professore of the Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU) at the University of Witten / Herdecke. He is an expert in the research on family business, especially with a focus on corporate governance and internationalization of family businesses. Since April 2011 Prof. Andrea Calabrò worked as a Visiting Professor, now is the appeal by the ministerial agreement finalized.

Here you will find the press release.

14th Congress for Familiy Business

The 14th Congress has addressed the topic of family business growth from the perspective of the family. In addition to the economic growth of the company were also dealing with a growing group of shareholders as well as the personal growth of the family members of thematic priorities of the Congress.

Experienced mentors of the Congressteam were Dr. Tom WIFU Rüsen, Professor of Arist Schlippe Benkhofer and Sebastian.

You can find more information about the conference for family.

Family Business Researcher are studying succession

Each semester the Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU) brings top scientists in the context of a lecture series on family business research at the University of Witten / Herdecke. On Wednesday, 11 January, is Prof. Dr. Eddy Laveren guest in Witten.

The whole article can be found at Der Westen.

For more information about the lecture series on family business research can be found here.

How family businesses benefit from foundations

Family businesses offer security and reliability, but after several generations, intra-family conflicts of interest can also threaten the existence of the company. Putting the fate of the company into the hands of a foundation, can solve such problems. Why this is the case is described in the sixth volume of the series from the Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU). Mittelstandsmanager.de writes about here.

The full article can be found here: Familienunternehmen und Stiftungen (german only)

M.Sc. “Family Business Management” receives “Land der Ideen” Award

On the 28th of June 2011 at a ceremony with over 100 guests the M.Sc. ‘Family Business Management’ received the ‘Land of Ideas’ award.

WIFU is very proud to have received such an award for the idea and realization of this unique course just 9 months after its launch.

The course „ Family Business Management“ (M.Sc.) is the first Master of Science in Germany in the field of managing family businesses. It is targeted at students who want to deal with the dynamics, interaction and challenges of family and business within a family business. During their studies, students learn to recognize early the particular risks and opportunities for this type of company as well as how to evaluate their importance and then take appropriate action to manage them.

The Economic Science Faculty of Witten/Herdecke University has consequently given the Masters course an interdisciplinary orientation: Economics, psychology, sociology and law are integral parts. These subjects are the basis for the conception of the Witten Institute for Family Business (WIFU), which is largely responsible for the conceptual design and execution of the courses of study.

Neuer Band in der WIFU-Schriftenreihe erschienen

 

Organisation der Unternehmerfamilie in Stämmen von Dr. Jakob Ammer.

 

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