We act according to the basic principle of integrative research. The foundation for transdisciplinary expansion was laid when the WIFU was founded with its consistent interdisciplinary orientation. The team grasps the problems and challenges of family businesses and business families in all their complexity. This enables the linking of disciplines as well as theory and practice as the methodological approach of our research.
- System theories of family businesses/business families
- Transdisciplinary research
- Diverse topics
- Worldwide network
- Foundational research
- Unique access to the field
- Exemplary methodical expertise
TWO UNIQUE FEATURES CHARACTERISE RESEARCH AT WIFU:
The strategic positioning of the WIFU is consistently geared towards business families. That is why we speak of Family Impact in Focus. All chairs research family businesses – in particular, the family side of family businesses (business families) – and consider entrepreneurship under the psychosocially influential category of sustainable management. Research and teaching as well as practical development at the institute follow this special focus.
The research strategy of the WIFU is transdisciplinary, thus combining different scientific disciplines as well as theory and practice. The consideration of research objects is, therefore, integrative and multi-perspective, located between the social and economic as well as psychological, anthropological and historical perspectives. No national or international university institute that deals with family businesses has such a broad focus as the WIFU.
Strategic positioning of the WIFU
CURRENT RESEARCH PROJECTS
Current research projects of the Witten Institute for Family Business can be found here:
Since September 2022, the WIFU has been a member of the European Family Business Research Centers Network (EuFBC), an association of 21 organisations that play a leading role in the field of family business research in Europe. The EuFBC was founded to strengthen international scientific exchange on the topic of family businesses. Every fortnight, a study is presented in a one-hour lunchtime seminar, followed by detailed feedback and discussion. Further information is available here.
Dr Anne Katarina Heider will be pleased to respond to your questions.
Since 2022, the WIFU has had a research cooperation agreement with the Center of Excellence on Family Business & Entrepreneurship at the Foundation for Research, Education and Development (FRED) in Mysuru, India. The centre focuses on research, consulting and education in family businesses and business families. Among the relevant topics are family strategy, succession and family business in a cultural context. To further deepen our cooperation, the WIFU and the FRED are organising a joint conference, ‘Fusion through Conversation’, in September 2023 in India and inviting contributions by academics from different disciplines, consultants and members of business families. Further details can be obtained here: www.fredindia.org or from PD Dr Tobias Koellner.
WIFU GRADUATE COLLEGE AND WIFU RESEARCH CAMP
THE WIFU GRADUATE COLLEGE
The WIFU GRADUATE COLLEGE uniquely addresses the societal, economic and social relevance of family entrepreneurship.
The aim of the GRADUATE COLLEGE funded by the WIFU Foundation is to prepare young scholars, particularly doctoral candidates, for academic careers in Germany and abroad. By integrating nationally and internationally renowned researchers, the GRADUATE COLLEGE networks with the WIFU in the international research landscape of the family business field.
Further information on the contents of the WIFU GRADUATE COLLEGE and the application procedure can be found here (only available in German):
THE WIFU RESEARCH CAMP
The WIFU Research Camp on family businesses and business families is designed for doctoral candidates and postdoctoral students striving for academic careers in the field of family business studies. A central component of the WIFU Graduate College, it is open to doctoral candidates who are enrolled in a doctoral programme, are about to enrol for a doctorate or have already completed their doctoral studies and are seeking habilitation. The programme offers young scholars opportunities to share the latest state of their research, learn from the field and network in close collaboration with other family business researchers.