Submitted on 08/10/2020

"Tough times don’t last but tough people do" - Meet Yassir Al Masoudi and read his acknowledgement

DCR fellow Yassir Al Masoudi submitted the Alpha version of his doctoral thesis "Business Models in the Eyes of National Culture: A Cross-Cultural Study" in July 2020. He is now looking for a matching postdoctoral position all over Germany while implementing some minor suggestions his supervisors proposed. 

It is our big pleasure to share Yassir's acknowledgement and dedication with you. Be prepared to meet a strong and warm-hearted character. Yassir has experienced severe trials and storms in his live and pulled through building resilience and a positive mindset. It is true: He grew tremendously as a confident and independent researcher during his PhD. He also grew as a person at peace with himself and the challenges he encountered. To quote our Alumni Abiodun Adegbile: "Always remember that tough times don’t last but tough people do" – and Yassir is tough and strong, for himself, his son, his wife and his whole family back in Yemen. 


My PhD dissertation has been an arduous and long journey characterized by inner maturation, on both a professional and personal level. Indeed, I believe that the path of obtaining my PhD has been a formative and memorable experience whereby I have been growing as an independent and self-confident researcher. And yet, it would have been impossible to complete my PhD dissertation without the full support and great help of many individuals. I, therefore, would like to take this opportunity to extend my heartfelt thanks and express my profound gratitude to all of them.

Foremost, I am grateful to Allah for all the blessings that He has given me. Indeed, “And my success is not but through Allah. In Him do I put my trust and to Him do I always turn” (Qur'an 11:88).

I am greatly indebted to my supervisors, Prof. Dr. Jochen Koch and Prof. Dr. Heinz-Theo Wagner, for their supervision and guidance. Prof. Dr. Koch’s illuminating views, friendly advice, and, of course, considerable expertise in qualitative research have been absolutely essential for the completion of this dissertation. Prof. Dr. Wagner has always been available for feedback on either the initial draft of my PhD project or the other projects. Undoubtedly, without their constructive criticism, infinite patience, and precious time, this PhD would not have been done.

I would also like to acknowledge the Dynamic Capabilities and Relationships (DCR) faculty members, Prof. Dr. Albrecht Söllner, Prof. Dr. Martin Eisend, Prof. Dr. Markus Vodosek , Prof. Dr. Tomás Bayón, and my supervisors for their informative research method courses and seminars, as well as their constructive comments during the proposal conferences.

Further, I would like to express my appreciation to the fellow doctoral students for their fruitful discussion and intellectual companionship. Indeed, I have learned a lot from them.

In addition, I would like to thank the DCR administrative staff for their great support. Especially, I would like to say "Dankeschön" to Ms. Anja Rillcke for her big help and prompt response regarding the different issues that arose during my PhD journey.

Furthermore, I would like to express my sense of gratitude towards the managers and informants in the three restaurants. Despite the fact that they have been very busy, they actually managed to generously find time for my interview and follow-up questions. They further allowed me to make direct observations and access to a range sources of materials during the data collection process. My grateful thanks also go to Mr. Belal Alsanhani for his assistance in facilitating the process of data collection at Hadramout restaurant in Jordan.

My PhD study has been fully funded by the Dieter Schwarz Foundation. I would like to extend my sincere thanks to the foundation in appreciation of their generous support.

Last but not least, I would like to thank my family and my friends for their emotional support. Despite the current critical situation in Yemen, my family members- parents, brothers, sisters, grandparents, uncles, and mother-in-law- kept providing me with emotional support. May Allah bless my mother Iman and my father Yahya and keep all my family members safe. Of course, I am lucky to have my beloved wife Halah and my fine son Sam with me in Germany. From the bottom of my heart, I thank you Halah for giving me power and motivation. The fact that you keep believing in me is a source of my strength and confidence. May Allah reward you and help you fulfil your aspirations. My thanks go to my father-in-law, brother-in-law and, especially, my sister-in-law Hanoaf for their emotional support. Finally, I give my thanks for my friends, particularly those who kept asking me the same question several times: When will you submit your PhD dissertation?


For my late two brothers, Hussein and Abdelsalam, whose surprising and tragic death occurred while I was doing my PhD. May their souls rest in peace.

For my son, Sam, who was born while I was doing my PhD. I sincerely wish that one day he would draw a lesson from his father’s story so as to create his own future.