Doctorate of Business Administration

Research Updates

Latest update 09.07.2024

Understanding the Basics of Startup Development Organizations

Allison Piper Kimball (07.2024)

Allison Piper Kimball

Allison Piper Kimball


The rapid rise of the entrepreneurship and start-up ecosystem since the early 2000s led to the development of various start-up development organizations (SDOs) designed to assist founders at various stages. With a growing number of SDO options and limited resources and time, founders may have difficulty selecting an appropriate SDO with which to engage. Similarly, the complex nature of this space makes it difficult for investors to assess the role of SDOs concerning start-up risk factors and odds of success. Both science and practice have yet to identify factors of SDOs that contribute to their performance. Two issues that serve as barriers to identifying success factors are that scientific studies are limited and terminology is inconsistent. Therefore, it remains unclear whether engagement with an SDO increases start-ups’ success and, in turn, a positive return on investment to the investor. This chapter contributes to the literature by identifying differentiating features of SDOs and outlining current evaluation and comparison methods. The chapter concludes with future research topics that will further our understanding of factors critical to SDO performance.

Competitiveness of Unique Venues in Multicultural Spaces in South Korea: A Grounded Theory Approach

Lee Hyoungjoo, Broillet Alexandra, Kim Boyoung (07.2024)

Lee Hyoungjoo

Lee Hyoungjoo


This study explores the expanding phenomenon of unique venues in multicultural spaces as locations for business events, focusing on a grounded theory approach to identify factors and strategies that enhance the competitiveness of unique venues within these spaces. 23 venue managers related to the unique venue businesses in South Korean multicultural spaces were interviewed, and the collected interview results were analyzed. The analysis revealed that multicultural spaces are engaging in unique venue businesses for brand promotion and creating new revenue opportunities. Additionally, they employ interaction strategies based on their intrinsic competitiveness to enhance cometitiveness among various companies. This study, based on grounded theory in South Korea, shows limitations in generalization, and future research should verify the models derived from this study through global venue perspectives and actual case studies. Meanwhile, excellent managerial capabilities of venues can strengthen professional services, the uniqueness of local and natural environments can contribute to the development of package products utilizing external environmental resources, and the excellence of internal resources can lead to the development of customer experience programs using these resources, thereby further enhancing competitiveness. As a result, it provides mplications that marketing capabilities are improved and regional networks are expanded, ultimately leading to increased business events.

Link to Journal of Creativity and Innovation.

Knowledge Capital and Stock Returns during Crises in the Manufacturing Sector: Moderating Role of Market Share, Tobin’s Q, and Cash Holdings

Chaeho Chase Lee, Erdal Atukeren, and Hohyun Kim (06.2024)

Chae Ho Lee

Chae Ho Lee


This study analyzes the impact of knowledge capital (KC), a key element of firms’ innovation and competitiveness, on stock returns during economic crises when sustainable competitiveness becomes particularly important. We analyze the impact of the Global Financial Crisis and COVID-19 as economic crises, focusing on manufacturing industries with a high proportion of investment shifts from physical capital to KC. Our findings indicate that KC is positively associated with stock returns during the Global Financial Crisis and COVID-19. This positive relationship is strengthened by the firm’s ability to leverage KC, as measured by greater product market share, higher Tobin’s Q, and larger cash holdings. This study emphasizes the protective role of KC during the economic crisis when the market pays more attention to corporate sustainability and provides implications to corporate managers and investors.

The Impact of Knowledge Capital and Organization Capital on Stock Performance during Economic Crises: The Moderating Role of a Generalist CEO

Chaeho Chase Lee, Hohyun Kim, and Erdal Atukeren (03.2024)

Chae Ho Lee

Chae Ho Lee


This study examines the relationship between intangible capital (IC) and stock performance during the two recent crisis periods, the GFC and COVID-19. By categorizing IC into Knowledge Capital (KC) and Organizational Capital (OC), we analyze the impact of each capital on the crisis return in the manufacturing sector. The results show that a greater KC and OC are significantly associated with higher crisis returns during both periods. In addition, we find evidence that generalist CEOs strengthen this relationship while specialist CEOs do not. Within firms led by a generalist CEO, the CEO’s tenure positively moderates the association between each factor of intangible capital and crisis period returns. This study emphasizes the pivotal role of KC and OC as a protective buffer against external shocks, particularly when the market pays more attention to corporate sustainability.

Overseas Market Expansion Strategy of the Global Electronic Components Company Based on the AHP Analysis of Factors in Technology, Organization, and Environment Context: A Case of Samsung Electro-Mechanics

Won Chang Cho, Erdal Atukeren, and Hyosook Yim (10.2023)

Won Chang Cho


The overseas market expansion strategy is important for achieving competitive advantage and sustainable growth of global electronic component companies. Although the global electronic component market has grown rapidly recently, research focusing on the innovation strategy of global electronic component companies’ expansion into overseas markets is scarce. This paper defines the key factors that influence the success of a global electronic component company’s overseas market expansion strategy based on the Technology, Organization, and Environment (TOE) framework and quantitatively identifies the relative importance of factors at the technology, organization, and environmental levels through Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) analysis. As a case study, we analyze Samsung Electro-Mechanics, which has grown as a global electronic components company through an overseas market expansion strategy in recent decades. As a result of the analysis, among the three top factors defined as key factors, the technology factor was evaluated as the most important factor, and among the subfactors of the technology factor, “R&D Availability”, and “Production Availability” were analyzed as the most important influencing factors. These analysis results suggest that global electronic component companies can achieve successful results when they pursue overseas market expansion strategies by prioritizing technology development and focusing on growth strategies suited to the market environment. This study is meaningful as an academic study focusing on the overseas market expansion strategies of global electronic component companies and makes a practical contribution by providing management implications that can be taken by electronic component companies seeking to expand overseas markets.


Plausible futures for the Norwegian offshore energy sector: Business as usual, harvest or rebuild?

Espen Stoknes, Iulie Aslaksen, Ulrich Golüke, Jorgen Randers, Arild Garnåsjordet. (2023)

Professor Ulrich Golüke


The global energy transition from fossil to low-carbon energy challenges the future of the Norwegian petroleum sector, a major factor in the country’s economy, now facing financial climate risk and long-term declining demand, particularly for gas to the EU. What energy policies can assist transition into a low-carbon society? We explore three investment scenarios for the Norwegian offshore energy sector from 2020 to 2070: 1) Business as usual, 2) Increasing cash-flow by harvesting existing petroleum fields and cutting investments (Harvest-and- Exit), or 3) Rebuilding with green offshore energy investments. In a new economic model, we compare impacts on key macro- and sector-economic variables. We find that rebuilding by investing moderately in green offshore energy production could reverse the extra job decline that a quicker phase-out of petroleum investments would incur. The impacts on the Norwegian sovereign wealth fund – Government Pension Fund Global – and on gross domestic product (GDP) per capita are insignificant to 2050 and positive by 2070. The simulated investments and economic results can be compared with observations to constitute forward-looking indicators for energy transitioning in producer countries.


Entrepreneurial CEO’s Intended Public Language Clarity as a Strategic Tool for Corporate Communication: Linguistic Analysis of Automotive Industry Leaders

Kim, S. (2023)

Dr. Sehoon Kim


Despite various efforts in management studies, the literature has neglected to explore the strategic use of public language, defined as the external communication by the CEO, in entrepreneurial settings. This study hypothesizes that entrepreneurial strategic intent leads to the intended clarity to achieve the desired business goals on a theoretical basis of upper echelons theory, sense-making and active audience theory. The analytical procedure included linguistic analysis for readability and simplicity of the public language of Tesla and four other incumbents based on the corpus spoken by CEOs under official settings. The findings reveal that Tesla’s CEO delivered intended clarity, delivering the most comprehensible information to the stakeholders, as hypothesized in the research design. This article contributes to the literature by suggesting a novel S-P-I model that investigates the ‘Strategic intent– Public language–Intended clarity’ flow. Managerial implications advise organizations adequately manage their public language to have desired results.


Contradictory realities and competing perspectives: how discourses in education shape the teacher-self

Rose (06.2023)

Dr. Patrick Allen Rose


This Foucauldian case study examines how dominant discourses in education operate to subtly constitute teachers as normalized subjects by producing knowledge and inducing techniques of power. The retellings of high school teachers are examined to demonstrate how they reconcile their own personal experiences and professional ethics with the static ideal images projected by competing political discourses. It is found in the localized context of a single American high school that public policy, technology, and teacher discourses represent teachers in certain ways and compel them to self-regulate themselves such that they internalize and reify imposed norms. However, teachers resist and alter these discourses to produce other possibilities for the critical teacher subject positions they actually occupy. A model is proposed to illustrate how different representations of the teacher-subject emerge from the collision, distribution, and legitimatization of these discourses. This study brings into view the ways teachers powerfully question and resist the constraints placed upon their conduct and draw on their personal relationships with each other to constitute their own professional identities.


Governance Structures: Enabling Social Entrepreneurial Organizations in South Africa to Operate Sustainably

Human (05.2023)

Dr. Corlea Johanna Human


The purpose of this paper is to determine what kind of governance structures would enable Social Entrepreneurial Organizations (SEOs) in South Africa to operate sustainably. The focus is on the multi-dimensionality of governance, with the dimensions of policy, operations, and legal structures being deliberated according to priorities, opportunities, and challenges. Qualitative research was used as methodology to answer the research question. A multiple method approach included four embedded units of analysis as part of a descriptive survey, completed by 39 respondents from four SEOs based in three South African provinces as well as nine in-depth, semi-structured interviews, in a single case study. Findings showed that although the dimensions of policy, operations and governance structures are severely fragmented, the kind of governance structures that SEOs need to operate sustainably, are new and revised policies, operations that are well managed according to an integrated value chain, and flexible legal structures that allow for the generation of revenue to create pattern breaking and sustainable solutions. The synergistical overlap of governing through trust, the capacity of the state, and the two-sided business model, forms an enabling of governance structures, thereby compensating for the fragmented dimensions, and enabling SEOs to govern sustainably.


M&A valuation for going concern: A case study using Samsung electronics’ adjusted EBITDA Multiple

Jee Woung Hong, Jan Erik Meidell & Hyun-Jung Kim, (05.2023)

Dr. Jee Woung Hong


This study analyzes the limitations of EBITDA (Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization) Multiple from the perspective of the going concern principle. A new Adjusted EBITDA Multiple that complements the limitations of the EBITDA Multiple is generated and applied to real-world cases for comparison. EBITDA Multiple is used to assess if the target company is undervalued or overvalued; adjusted EBITDA Multiple is used to determine the time taken to recover the total acquisition cost of a company in an M&A transaction. Samsung Electronics, South Korea’s leading tech firm, is used as a case study to analyze financial information between 2017 and 2021. The result varied with the M&A decisions. Investment decisions in M&A are made considering the assets (debt + capital) to be assumed with the acquisition and additional investment costs for the target’s sustainable management. We propose a new valuation method for recovering M&A investment costs, considering the long-term sustainable growth of the acquired company.


Effects of Board Independence on Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Financial Consequences: Evidence from South Korea

Kim, SJ, Kim, H & Atukeren, (E 2023)

Dr. Sang Joon Kim

Dr. Sang Joon Kim


Because of climate change issues, greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions have been emerging as an important research topic in recent years. This study examines the role of corporate governance in reducing GHG emissions by focusing on board independence. We use the industry fixed effect panel regression model to analyze data from 156 listed South Korean firms during the period from 2011 to 2019. Our results suggest that board independence is related positively with the reduction in GHG emissions. In addition, our evidence shows that firms with higher levels of GHG emissions have better financial performance, but board independence weakens the relation. Our findings imply that an independent board tends to focus on balancing the firm’s financial versus environmental performance. This quantitative study contributes to our understanding of the effects of corporate effects on firms’ GHG emissions and their financial consequences. The findings have implications for corporate managers and policymakers with respect to choosing corporate governance structures that reduce GHG emissions effectively.


Innovating Knowledge and Information for a Firm-Level Automobile Demand Forecast System: A Machine Learning Perspective

Kim, S. (2023)

Dr. Sehoon Kim


Accurate demand forecasting is important for automotive manufacturing and sales planning because it allows firms to minimize costs and improve their effectiveness. Based on the limitations of existing literature, this paper seeks to establish a novel machine learning-assisted hybrid-input automobile demand forecast model by focusing on the research gaps in input data, methodology, and the scope of demand forecast. To achieve the research aim, the firm-level forecasting performance of the machine learning algorithms based on the hybrid micro-/firm-level (endogenous) and macro-level (exogenous) factors were analyzed to present the optimal approach. The study collected and used monthly vehicle sales and related firm-level data from South Korea from 2011 to 2020. Linear regression, neural network, random forest, stochastic gradient descent, and ensemble learning were used to build the models and verify significant input features using the RReliefF algorithm. The paper presents significant theoretical and managerial contributions that advance the methodological frameworks in the auto demand forecasting literature based on the ML-assisted hybrid-input model, highlighting less well-known endogenous factors that affect company precision to enhance businesses’ practical operations.


Predicting and Managing Supply Chain Risks

Lucchetta, F. (2023)

Business School Professor of Practice Francesco Lucchetta


In recent years, we have seen how the supply chains of all companies around the world can be challenged by events of varying nature and magnitude. The prevention of these events, and the risks associated with them, is crucial not only for the continuity of a business but also for its survival. The objective of this paper is to provide clear guidance on how to identify and predict supply chain risks and avoid or greatly limit their impact on the value chain of companies. Approaching the subject in a typical 3D manner (discover, develop, deploy), the text aims to provide a toolkit that can be readily applied, especially for companies of production and supply of goods, and easily customized to the specific needs that each enterprise normally has. The paper explains how to create a process for recognizing and identifying risks that may affect an organization; how to prioritize them by quantifying each risk by magnitude and likelihood of occurrence; how to mitigate them through targeted actions for each type of risk; and how to create a risk-sensitive working environment and anticipate its prediction and detection.


Congratulations to BSL’s DBA student Sang Joon Kim, and co-author Professor Dr. Erdal Atukeren for their publication in Finance Research Letters available at Science Direct !

“Does the market’s reaction to greenhouse gas emissions differ between B2B and B2C?
Evidence from South Korea”


Dr. Sang Joon KIM


This paper analyzes the relationship between greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and the financial performance of business-to-business (B2B) or business-to-consumer (B2C) organizations. We find that Tobin’s q is positively associated with higher GHG emissions for B2B firms, implying that GHG emissions reduction is regarded as a necessary cost. Meanwhile, a negative relationship is found for B2C firms, which may be due to consumers responding to climate change issues. These findings contribute to our understanding of the heterogeneous relationship in the existing literature. The evidence also implies on the policy level that more stringent regulatory pressure may be required for B2B firms to reduce their GHG emissions.


Congratulations to BSL’s DBA student Jeewong Hong (홍지웅), and co-author Professor Dr. Jan Erik Meidell for the publication of their case study with the National Research Foundation of Korea!

“A Case Study on Company Valuation using Adjusted EBITDA Multiple from a Mergers and Acquisitions Perspective”

Dr. Jee Woung-Hong

Dr. Jee Woung-Hong


From a mergers and acquisitions (M&A) perspective, this study applies the existing EBITDA (Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization) multiple and a new adjusted EBITDA multiple to real cases and compares the indicators. The new adjusted EBITDA multiple is a novel valuation method created by supplementing the shortcomings and limitations of the existing EBITDA multiple, which can help decision-making from an M&A perspective. The adjusted EBITDA multiple indicates the time needed to recover total acquisition-related costs when acquiring a company. We analyze the financial information of Hyundai Motor Company and NAVER Corporation from 2017–2021 and find that the further expenditure, in addition to the initial acquisition cost, is necessary to manage the company sustainably. M&A and stock investment decision-making has differing goals and therefore requires different company valuation methods. In the case of stock investment, the objective of the investment is to gain capital from the increase in the stock price of the target company. However, it is important to make decisions regarding M&A in consideration of the acquiring company’s going concern point of view. This study aims to introduce a valuation methodology that can provide practical help to M&A decision-making rather than stock investment.


Curious about how to bridge generational divides at work? 

Our Doctoral candidate Denise Roberson has co-authored and published an HBR article on December 23rd 2022 about that topic: 

3 Strategies to Bridge Generational Divides at Work

BSL Doctoral candidate Denise Roberson


Strategic orientation, innovation, and the effects of entrepreneurial support mechanism in SMEs in South Korea: an application of subject-mechanism-performance congruence model

Kim, S. (2022)

Dr. Sehoon Kim


This study investigates the causal relationships among strategic orientation, innovation, and entrepreneurial support mechanisms. Strategic orientation is significant for innovation, and support mechanisms are organizational processes that mediate the innovation generating path. This study hypothesizes that the support mechanism consists of Culture, Structure, Reward, and Procedure and advances the existing theory, exemplifying an SMP (subject-mechanism-performance) framework based on empirical data collected through a national survey for 3,085 SMEs in South Korea. The findings suggest that strategic orientation affects innovation, and tangible interventions such as Procedure, Reward, and Structure might be differently applied from Culture to nurture innovative outcomes of SMEs.


Congratulations to Prof. Dr. Sascha Nick for his latest co-authored publication titled:

“Towards True Climate Neutrality for Global Aviation: A Negative Emissions Fund for Airlines”

by Dr. Sascha Nick and Philippe Thalmann


What would it take for aviation to become climate-neutral by 2050? We develop and model a trajectory for aviation to reduce its CO2 emissions by 90% by 2050, down to a level where all residual emissions can be removed from the atmosphere without crowding out other sectors that also need negative emissions. To make emitters pay for the carbon removal, we propose and model a negative emissions fund for airlines (NEFA). We show that it can pay for the removal of all CO2 emitted by aviation from 2030 onwards, for a contribution to the fund of USD 200–250 per ton CO2 emitted. In our baseline simulation, USD 3.3 trillion is invested by the fund over 40 years in high-quality carbon removal projects designed for biodiversity and societal co-benefits. While we do propose a number of governance principles and concrete solutions, our main goal is to start a societal dialogue to ensure aviation becomes both responsible and broadly beneficial.


Congratulations to Professor Dr. Mario Saba for his latest co-authored publication titled:

“The Recursive Theory of Knowledge Augmentation: Integrating human intuition and knowledge in Artificial Intelligence to augment organizational knowledge”

Professor Dr. Mario Saba

Over a period of five years, a European research team in Information Systems including Dr. Mario Saba, Professor and Doctoral Supervisor at BSL, studied the behavior of a prehistoric man who lived in southern France between 600,000 and 90,000 years ago.


To augment organizational knowledge with Artificial Intelligence.

In this research, published on October 26th  in the international journal Information Systems Frontiers (Impact Score: 6.81), they developed a recursive theory of knowledge augmentation in organizations called the KAM model.

It is based on a synthesis of extant literature and a four-year revised canonical action research project. The research project aimed to design and implement a human-centric AI to solve the lack of integration of tacit and explicit knowledge in a French scientific research center.

They offered the possibility to integrate experts’ intuition and domain knowledge in AI in an explainable way. Indeed, their findings show that organizational knowledge can be augmented through a recursive process enabled by the design and implementation of human-in-the-loop IAI.

The article that has been published in the journal Information Systems Frontiers and can be found on Springer since October 16th 2022:


A Global Entrepreneurship Efficiency Benchmarking and Comparison Study based on National Systems of Entrepreneurship and Early-Stage Business: A Data Envelopment Analysis Approach

Kim, S. (2022)

Dr. Sehoon Kim


National Systems of Entrepreneurship is defined as a nation’s resource allocation structure leading to entrepreneurial behaviors. However, the existing indicators of national framework conditions may have limitations in comparing the entrepreneurial efficiency of countries. Based on institutional theory, this paper presents a model to examine the efficiency of entrepreneurial activities stemming from the given conditions of a country and find benchmarks based on data envelopment analysis by scrutinizing inputs and outputs with static efficiency, dynamic efficiency, and strategic quadrant analysis. For this purpose, the study utilizes the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor dataset from 2015 to 2020 for 24 countries and presents the research questions regarding the differences in global entrepreneurial efficiencies, the countries for benchmarking, and the implications for entrepreneurial activities. The research implications suggest that diversifying the views on entrepreneurial efficiency may be valuable, and policymakers may focus on institutional conditions and entrepreneurial efficiency regarding the activity of early-stage businesses.


Congratulations to Professor Dr Ganesh Nathan who has just published a new article about the meaningfulness at work:

“Meaningfulness at Work: Wellbeing, Employeeship and Dignity in the Workplace”, published in The IUP Journal of Soft Skills, Vol. 16, No. 2, June 2022, pp. 16-42

Prof Nathan has published several research papers in various topics: ethical innovation and governance, CSR, multi-culturalism, cross-cultural management, global governance etc. Most of the papers can be downloaded freely from and the total reads and downloads have exceeded 30’000 on this platform. Total citations have exceeded 100.

A paper ‘A non-essentialist model of culture: Implications of identity, agency and structure within multinational/multicultural organizations’ from Prof Nathan (2015) published by the International Journal of Cross Cultural Management has been widely read.

We recommend reading the above paper “A non-essentialist model of culture” that counts more than 20’000 reads on


Professor Doctor Erdal Atukeren becomes an Editorial Board Member of journal Springer Nature

Professor Dr. Erdal Atukeren has become an Editorial Board Member of the journal “Springer Nature: Business and Economics (SNBE)” upon invitation. Professor Dr. Atukeren will be an associate editor for several papers per quarter.

Dr. Erdal Atukeren, teaches at:

  • Swiss Business School (SBS)
  • University of Applied Sciences Institute
  • Business School Lausanne (BSL)

Professor Dr. Atukeren has also become a Guest Editor for a Special Issue of the MDPI journal “World”. The theme of the Special Issue is: “The World under COVID-19: Innovation, Risk and the Challenge of Global Economic Development”.

Special Issue “The World under COVID-19: Innovation, Risk and the Challenge of Global Economic Development”

A special issue of World (ISSN 2673-4060).

SciProfilesGuest Editor

1. SBS Swiss Business School – University of Applied Sciences Institute, CH-8302 Kloten (Zürich), Switzerland
2. BSL Business School Lausanne, CH-1022 Chavannes (VD), Switzerland
Interests: macroeconomics; applied econometrics; energy economics; economic development; sustainability; art markets
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Share This Special Issue

Dear Colleagues,

We are organizing a Special Issue entitled “The World under COVID-19: Innovation, Risk and Challenge of Global Economic Development” of the journal World, which is a multidisciplinary and open-access journal devoted to past, present, and future links between economic, political, social, and/or environmental issues. More information about the journal can be found at

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused changes in the social, technological, economic, environmental, political, legal, and ethical environment (STEEPLE) of societies and businesses to varying degrees. The pressing global challenges of digital transformation, climate change, and meeting the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) took on a new dimension under COVID-19. As an unanticipated shock, the COVID-19 pandemic put economies and societies under much stress and brought about further discussion and research, not only in risk management but also in innovation management areas, such as open innovation. A key concept to emerge from the COVID-19 experience is the degree of “resilience” in the systems.

This Special Issue aims to publish findings and observations regarding the relationship between the COVID-19 pandemic and global development with a focus on risk management, innovation management, and resilient systems in areas covering, but not limited to, the following: economic development; SDGs; sustainability; finance; economics; strategic management; supply chain and logistics, marketing and advertising; organizational behaviour; human resource management; labor economics and industrial relations; project management; tourism and hospitality; health services, public health; education; resource and environmental economics, and cultural economics.

We encourage the submission of notes, reviews, original research articles, empirical studies, conceptual papers, short communications, systematic reviews, and case studies targeting any of the above areas, and especially the papers related to the experience of COVID-19 for developing countries .

Prof. Dr. Erdal Atukeren
Guest Editor


Welcome Message from the Scientific Director and Program Administrator from BSL-aSSIST Dual Doctoral Program

Dear BSL-aSSIST Dual Doctoral Program Students:

안녕하세요! I welcome you to the BSL-aSSIST Dual Doctoral Degree Program in Business Administration. As the Scientific Director and the Program Administrator of the BSL-aSSIST Dual Doctoral Degree Program on the BSL side, I will be your main contact person at BSL Business School Lausanne.

The BSL-aSSIST Dual Degree Doctoral Program in Business Administration is unique. In addition to obtaining a Ph.D. degree from aSSIST, Seoul Business School, you obtain a Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) degree from BSL upon successful completion of the degree requirements. The DBA program at BSL is designed to combine your many years of high-level professional experience with academic rigor and research to provide novel solutions to business problems at the industry level.

The BSL-aSSIST Dual Doctoral Degree Program offers many opportunities for students to meet and interact with BSL faculty and with other students in the program. BSL organizes Doctoral Acceleration Weeks (DAW) twice a year – in May and in November. During the DAWs, you can present your work-in-progress, listen to other students’ presentations and learn from the feedback they get, and follow lectures by BSL faculty on various aspects of the doctoral research and thesis writing process. Participation in DAWs is voluntary and not mandatory, but it is highly recommended to make the most out of your doctoral studies and research. You can attend the DAWs in person at BSL or online. Some of your fellow students from previous intakes took this opportunity to visit Switzerland and have face-to-face meetings with their BSL Supervisors and Faculty in addition to establishing personal or business contacts with other students in BSL’s DBA program.

I thank you again for choosing the BSL-aSSIST Dual Doctoral Degree Program in Business Administration to advance your professional career with rigorous academic research that will bring novel industry-level insights and transformation prospects. I wish you all the best and much success during your studies and in your doctoral research.

Kind Regards.


Dr. Erdal Atukeren

Professor & Scientific Director and Program Administrator, BSL-aSSIST Dual Doctoral Degree Program


Corporate risk and greenhouse gas emissions: evidence from Korea

Sang Joon Kim & Hohyun Kim (2022)

Dr. Sang Joon Kim

Dr. Sang Joon Kim


Concerns regarding climate changes and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions have been growing in recent years. Nonetheless, firms are claiming their business burdens in GHG reduction. This study examines whether and how corporate risk is associated with GHG emissions. The previous literature suggests two opposing hypotheses regarding the association. Firms may invest in environmental issues only when firms do not face severe risks in the market. In contrast, environmental efforts could be made strategically to win market competition. By using a firm-level GHG emission dataset in Korea, we find that firm- and market-level risks are positively associated with GHG emissions, supporting the former hypothesis. This result is robust to several measures of corporate risks and GHG emissions. This study provides policy implications related to GHG emissions reduction.


Innovating workplace learning: Training methodology analysis based on content, instructional design, programmed learning, and recommendation framework

Kim, S. (2022)

Dr. Sehoon Kim


The quality of sales processes is crucial in automotive and directly related to the firm’s competitive advantage and financial success. Sales training is the most prevalent intervention to guarantee quality and productivity. Extant literature has attempted to measure training effectiveness adequately, and the Context, Input, Process, and Product evaluation (CIPP) model has been a popular approach. This study endeavored to advance current literature and suggest a novel effectiveness framework, Content, Instructional design, Programmed learning, and Recommendation (CIP-R). The framework was applied to examine three different methodologies-traditional, pure digital, and hybrid training-collecting 583 instances from the automotive sales training conducted from 2019 to 2020 in South Korea. The findings advocate the importance of human elements, the role of efficacy, and self-determination in generating learning transferability, leading to performance in the digital age.


DBA Graduate: Dr. Corlea Human


The purpose of the Thesis Dissertation  was to determine how social entrepreneurial organizations (SEOs) can commit to sustainability while contributing to the eradication of extreme poverty.

To answer this main question, The focus of the research was to answer three sub questions questions:

  • of which the first is to resolve how SEOs can use social business model innovation to address poverty and the impact on the environment.
  • The second is to determine the role that alternative financial instruments can play in the sustainable generation of revenue.
  • The third is to establish what kind of institutional governance structures would enable SEOs to operate sustainably.

This question is close Dr. Human’s heart and is related to her personal experiences of societal injustices and capitalistic agendas in South Africa.

Beyond the south African context, Dr. Human’s Thesis will provide transferrable answers and solutions to all entrepreneurial organizations working on the eradication of extreme poverty.


Critical Success Factors Evaluation by Multi-Criteria Decision-Making: A Strategic Information System Planning and Strategy-As-Practice Perspective

Kim, S. (2022)

Dr. Sehoon Kim


Strategic information system planning (SISP) is a central process that enables organizations to identify the strategic alignment of their IT portfolio to achieve their business needs and objectives. The extant SISP literature has focused on theoretical and processual aspects and has left methodological ambiguity about how SISP is practiced. This paper contributes to the current knowledge by providing a mixed-methods SISP framework labeled CSF-MCDM for company-wide strategic alignment. The paper conducts a methodological synthesis, embracing an expert-based qualitative approach based on a PEST-SWOT and causal layered analysis to draw the critical success factors of a next-generation business system for an automotive company in South Korea. The derived CSF dimensions and sub-criteria are evaluated by the multi-criteria decision-making model, engaging a strategy-as-practice lens to SISP to enable an integrative analysis of IS strategy formulation, planning, and implementation. The findings reveal the relative strategic priorities of dimensions, the following core activities, and the global priorities for resource distribution planning for IS strategy of the firm. This paper argues that bringing replicability with SISP and diversifying methodological approaches within the organization is substantial. This paper also suggests that future researchers validate the suggested framework for scientific replicability and expand the SISP research stream within the entire IS/IT ecosystem.


BSL’s Professor Patrick Rose publishes article with Frontiers Media SA

Professor Dr. Patrick Rose published the article “The Tug-of-War Over Truth: A Foucauldian Case Study on the Interplay of Competing Discourses in Education” as a part of the Research Topic “Leadership, Organizational Stressors, and Employee Work Attitudes in Educational Organizations” with Frontiers Media SA, a publisher of peer-reviewed, open access, scientific journals currently active in science, technology, and medicine.

Professor Dr. Patrick Rose


The present study applies a Foucauldian critical analytic to investigate competing discourses in education that are shown to be present in one public high school in the southern part of the United States. It is revealed how these discourses intersect and collide with each other to reinforce certain values, principles and practices, but eventually loosely coalesce along with other social interactions into general rules and social norms within the high school. It is found that technology itself represents a separate competing discourse with its own set of unique truths, goals, language and tools that both overlap and challenge other dominant discourses. Foucault’s concepts about power and governmentality provide the deductive design for data interpretation. Teacher and school administrator retellings are examined for signs of structures of thought and discursive truths that characterize ways of thinking that represent opposing points of views about the role of technology in education and its effect on defining the “right” way to teach. A framework is proposed for understanding and comparing the discourses based on their differing views of technology.

Read more


DBA Graduate: Dr. Grace Lin Xu

Dr Grace Lin Xu has been working on the creation of  An Integrated Framework of Personal & Organizational Perspectives for Employee Well-Being in the Chinese Workplace.

Little is known about the well-being of employees in China and how to address the issue within the unique context of Chinese organizations. Yet, there is evidence that the well-being of Chinese workers is poor compared to their counterparts in other countries and this represents a critical business issue for China.

Many studies have shown that low employee well-being negatively impacts companies in terms of employee burnout, absenteeism, depression, anxiety, ill health, and lost productivity.

 Unlike in many other countries where the importance of employee wellbeing is widely recognized as needed for maintaining a productive environment, only a few leading Chinese companies have taken significant steps to address the challenges of this concern.

 The aim of the research is to develop a holistic framework composed of proven well-being strategies that are appropriate to the China context.

To develop this framework Dr. Grace Lin Xu had to answer several key research questions:

  • What are the key categories for employee well-being in China?
  • What can employees do for their well-being in the workplace in China?
  • What organizational policies can companies implement for their employee well-being in the Chinese workplace?
  • Is it essential for both personal efforts and organizational policies to combine for employee well-being in the Chinese workplace?
  • What might be an implementable approach of the framework for employee well-being in the Chinese workplace?

Dr. Lin Xu’s Thesis will provide transferrable answers and solutions to Chinese companies effectively guiding the company decision-making for implementing employer-sponsored wellbeing programs.


DBA Graduate: Dr. Sehoon Kim

Dr Sehoon Kim has been working on the central topic of business model transformation in the automotive industry with the following title:  Business Model Innovation for Digital Dealership in the Korean Automotive Industry: Key Resources, Key Activities, and Channel Perspectives.

Dr. Sehoon Kim’s research focuses on the three main building blocks of the automotive retail business model, Key Resources (KR), Key Activities (KA), and Channels (CH). Dr Sehoon Kim has answered to questions in each of those building blocks. 

Here are the questions that have been driving Dr. Sehoon Kim’s research:

  • KR What is the performance-creating mechanism of fieldwork teams of automotive retailers?
  • KR What are the human resource development implications for the future dealership?
  • KA How does digital technology drive the business activities of traditional auto retailers?
  • KA What are the possible scenarios for key activities of the future dealership?
  • CH What factors should be considered for future channels of auto retailers?
  • CH What are the implications of order fulfillment modes for digital auto retailing?

The Thesis Dissertation suggests a model for strategic management that aligns the external environment and internal resources leading to a business model innovation that would transform the existing auto retail model into a digital dealership of the future.

Dr Sehoon Kim’s research presents a distinctive approach to generate sustained competitive advantage within a traditional industry under the digital era. It also presents practical implications for digitalizing the existing business under a rapidly changing environment and contributing to the existing knowledge.

Dr. Sehoon Kim’s research is focusing on business model transformation of the existing auto retail model to transform it into a digital one and will thus be transferable by provide theoretical and managerial real-world business transformation suggestions for automotive retail in South Korea.


How a company’s gamification strategy influences corporate learning: A study based on gamified MSLP (Mobile social learning platform)

Kim, S. (2020)

Dr. Sehoon Kim


Advances in personal devices and communication technologies have changed the learning landscape. Gamification is the use of technology to promote and induce the user’s internal motivation by exploiting the game’s characteristics. Recently, mobile learning applications introduce various gamification strategies to provoke users’ voluntary participation. However, empirical evidence on how to attract users and influence sustained usage is limited. This study establishes a theoretical basis for designing learning applications and discusses its impact on business. A series of gamification strategies such as Competition, Challenge, Compensation, Relationship, and Usability, were applied to a company’s Mobile Social Learning Platform (MSLP). A survey result of 293 users from South Korea was used for the advanced mediation model analysis. The result showed that Challenge, Relationship, and Usability had affected Flow and Continuous usage intention. This paper argues that the user’s usage intention will have a positive effect on voluntary learning. It also provides a significant implication for organizational effectiveness through the development and application of mobile learning platform.

Business Articles and Publications from our DBA Graduates

Park & Jang (2021). “The Impact of ESG Management on Investment Decision: Institutional Investors’ Perceptions of Country-Specific ESG Criteria.” International Journal of Financial Studies 9: 48. 

Business Articles and Publications from our DBA Candidates

Maurik de Groot (2021). “Entrepreneurs must reflect on their sales role and get into action! Especially during Covid-19.”, The European Business Review, available online.

Published Scientific Papers from our DBA Candidates

JS. Oh, TP. Connerton, and HJ. Kim (2019), “The Rediscovery of Brand Experience Dimensions with Big Data Analysis: Building for a Sustainable Brand.” Sustainability 2019, 11(19), 5438. 

Yi, S., Connerton, T., and Park, C. Y. (2019). Transforming Fitness Center Business Model: A Service-Profit Chain Approach. Journal of Leisure Studies, 17(3): 23 – 42. (Accepted and Published). 

Jang, JY & Atukeren, E 2019, ‘Sustainable Local Currency Debt: An Analysis of Foreigners’ Korea Treasury Bonds Investments Using a LA-VARX Model’, Sustainability, vol. 11, no.13. 3603. 

Jang, JY & Park, MJ 2019, ‘A Study on Global Investors’ Criteria for Investment in the Local Currency Bond Markets Using AHP Methods: The Case of the Republic of Korea’, Risks, vol. 7, no. 4, 101. 

Mikyoung Lee, Marko Mayer & Boyoung Kim 2019, “The Social Welfare Service Delivery System to Reinforce Sustainable Social Participation”, Soc. Sci., Vol.8, Issue 9, 258. Available from:

Mikyoung Lee, Marko Mayer & Boyoung Kim 2019,” Critical Factors Affecting Sustainable Success of Social Service Systems “, J. Open Innov. Technol. Mark. Complex.,vol.5, Issue 4, 77. Available from :

Jo, HJ.; Connerton, T.; Kim, HJ. (2019), ‘Dynamic Outsourcing Development for Sustainable Competitive Advantage in a High-Tech Backend Semiconductor Equipment Firm’, Sustainability 2020, 12(1), 155. Available from:

Kang, J.; Majer, M.; Kim, HJ. (2019), ‘Empirical Study of Omnichannel Purchasing Pattern with Real Customer Data from Health and Lifestyle Company’, Sustainability 2019, 11(24), 7185. Available from:

Yi, S., Connerton, T., and Park, C. Y. (2020). Should I Stay or Should I Leave? Fitness Club Visit Frequency’s Impact on Membership Retention. Managing Sports and Leisure. (Under Final Round of Review for Publication). 

Kim, Y.; Park, M.J.; Atukeren, E. (2020), ‘Healthcare and Welfare Policy Efficiency in 34 Developing Countries in Asia’, Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(13), 4617. Available from:

Kim S, Lee H and Connerton TP (2020) How Psychological Safety Affects Team Performance: Mediating Role of Efficacy and Learning Behavior. Frontiers in Psychology,

Kim, S. (2020). How a company’s gamification strategy influences corporate learning: A study based on gamified MSLP (Mobile social learning platform). Telematics and Informatics, 101505. (SSCI indexed)

Sehoon Kim, Timothy Paul Connerton, Cheongyeul Park (2021), Exploring the impact of technological disruptions in the automotive retail: A futures studies and systems thinking approach based on causal layered analysis and causal loop diagram, Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Volume 172,

Sehoon Kim, How a company’s gamification strategy influences corporate learning: A study based on gamified MSLP (Mobile social learning platform), Telematics and Informatics, Volume 57, 2021,

Kim S., Connerton, T. P., & Park, C. (2022), Transforming the Automotive Retail: Drivers for Customers’ Omnichannel BOPS (Buy Online & Pickup in Store) Behavior. Journal of Business Research, 139, 411-425

Some of BSL DBA Faculty Publications

Ganesh Nathan (2022). Meaningfulness at Work: Well-being, Employeeship and Dignity in the Workplace,  Available at SSRN: or

Guy Major Ngayo Fotso (2022). Differences Between Senior Human Resources Managers and Young Millennials Leaders on the Perceived Required Leadership Competencies for the 21st Century, The Journal of Human Resource Management, 2022; 10(1): 5-13

Guy Major Ngayo Fotso (2022). Exploring Intra-generational Differences Among Young Millennial Leaders on the Perceived Required Leadership Competencies for the 21st Century, The Journal of Human Resource Management, 2022; 10(1): 14-21

Ngayo Fotso, G.M. (2021), Leadership competencies for the 21st century: a review from the Western world literature, European Journal of Training and Development, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print.