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Why did we found the DCR Doctoral Program?

In the 19th century Karl Marx claimed in his eleventh thesis on Feuerbach: “The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways. The point, however, is to change it.”

Today´s world, though, is changing rapidly. It is changing at such a speed that it appears hard for politicians, managers, and other decision makers to stay oriented and to keep pace with the changes. What appears to be of outmost importance - not only for philosophers but for any decision maker - is to sense, understand, and interpret this change in order to actively shape the process of change and our future.

This challenge occupies center stage in the joint doctoral program “Dynamic Capabilities and Relationships” of the European University Viadrina in Frankfurt (Oder) and the German Graduate School of Management and Law in Heilbronn. Building on the work of David Teece, Kathleen Eisenhardt, Jeffrey Martin, and others we use the concept of dynamic capabilities in order to better understand and to further the proper handling of a rapidly changing world. Dynamic capabilities refer to a firm’s, organization´s or society´s abilities to deal with high velocity. Relationships among individuals and groups have a strong impact on these capabilities. Therefore we are keen on understanding the foundations of dynamic capabilities and how relationships affect their development.

Funded by the Dieter-Schwarz Foundation an international group of scholars – striving for scientific excellence – is working on this challenge of developing capabilities to cope with change, stay competitive, and make this world a place worth living. More About Us ...

Our approach is a very open one and we invite you to get involved in our exchange of ideas!

The program has meanwhile reached its final period (ending March 2020). The last group of PhD candidates has started their projects in April 2017 and there will be no further intake.


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Prof. Dr. Albrecht Söllner
European University Viadrina
Frankfurt (Oder), Germany
- Spokesperson of the DCR-Program -    
Prof. Dr. Tomás Bayón
German Graduate School of Management and Law,
Heilbronn, Germany
- Spokesperson of the DCR-Program -   



And the annual Faculty Recognition Award goes to:

Sadrac Cenophat and Abiodun Adegbile. Both fellows, almost finished with their PhD theses, were honoured for their outstanding scientific contributions at the Proposal Conference at the GGS in Heilbronn yesterday. Congratulations!

51st HICSS: Best Paper Award for Dr. Giorgi Shuradze

On January 5, 2018 Dr. Giorgi Shuradze presented a paper, titled “Data Analytics and Knowledge Integration Mechanisms: The Role of Social Interactions in Innovation Management” (co-authored with Prof. Heinz-Theo Wagner from GGS) at the 51st Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS). The paper received the best paper award by the Knowledge Innovation and Entrepreneurial Systems track (co-chairs: Murray Jennex from San Diego State University, and David T. Croasdell from University of Nevada).

ICIS 2017: Sarah Stanske presenting successfully in Seoul

The International Conference on Information Systems, best known as ICIS, took place at an exotic place this time, in Seoul. From Dec. 10th - 13th, participants were invited to join several events under the general theme "Transforming Society with Digital Innovation". DCR-members Heinz-Theo Wagner and Sarah Stanske set off to South Korea to present their research results. While Wagner presented his paper "The Impact of Digital Innovation on Path-Dependent Decision-Making: The Mediating Role of Risk Propensity and Opportunity-Threat Perception", Sarah joined a two-day workshop, where she collaborated with Karlheinz Kautz (RMIT Melbourne), an experienced scholar having already widely published in top-tier journals in the field of information systems, and presented a short paper at the end of the workshop. The paper focuses on platformization and the achieving of legitimacy of a digital innovation. With the help of their mentor Nick Berente (University of Georgia) they developed the concept of a “virtuous circle” and depicted the interplay between internal and external legitimacy. After presenting their paper to a panel of experienced editors of major IS journals, the team was ranked 5th out of 15. Because of this success and the editors’ confidence in the project, Karl and Sarah will continue in collaborating and will develop the paper further in order to submit it to a journal within the next year. Thanks to this success, the doctoral program gained international visibility as Sarah was subsequently invited to the prestigious CBS reception on the next day, during which she could make more connections to some of the most respective universities in the field of information systems. The DCR program would like to thank the ICIS community for their support. Special thanks go to Nick Berente who organized this workshop and provided many scholars the opportunity to find new collaborators and to start exciting new projects.