Bachelor & Master Seminar Spring 2014


Submission Deadline: May, 5th, 3 pm:
The paper must be submitted in duplicate form to the secretarys office (two printed versions of the seminar paper). In addition, a digital form (pdf) of the seminar paper has to be sent to your supervisor.



Topic Contemporary Issues in IS Research
Lecturer Prof. Dr. Armin Heinzl and research assistants
Contact hours per week 2 SWS, conducted as a block seminar
Registration open until February, 14th
Introduction session February, 28th (Friday, Time B2: 10:15-11:45, Room: O 048-050)
Dropout period until March, 9th
Paper submission deadline May, 5th 3 pm (2 duplicates to chair secretary and a pdf to the supervisor)
Seminar day May, 21 and May, 22 in the MBS Lecture Hall, Schloss EO.47
Contact Simon Hubert (hubert(at)

Deadlines & Milestones

Please pay attention to the following mandatory deadlines/milestones:
March, 17: Send literature review to supervisor (milestone 1)
April, 1: Basic concept/ exposé and table of contents to supervisor (milestone 2)
April, 28: First seminar draft to supervisor (milestone 3)
May, 5: Paper submission deadline (milestone 4: 2 duplicates to chair secretary and a pdf to the supervisor)
May, 14: E-Mail your seminar presentation to your supervisor to receive feedback for your pesentation slides (milestone 5)
May, 21/22: 10min presentation and 5min discussion of seminar thesis on the seminar day (milestone 6)


The primary objective of the seminar is to analyze information systems development and use from different perspectives. The secondary objective is to provide students with techniques of scientific writing in a fascinating real-world setting. Important aspects are the evaluation, structuring, and classification of existing research work and the presentation of a detailed and thorough overview of the current state of the art. In addition, scientific work also includes the creation of new knowledge. The participation in the seminar can be regarded as an important preliminary step towards a successful completion of the final thesis.

The topics of the seminar are subdivided into the five tracks listed below. The research questions of the seminar theses will be developed together with the supervisors and may or may not address one of the questions mentioned below.

If you have further questions, please don't hesitate to contact us.


Track Contents Advisor
Formal Probabilistics and Heuristics in Information Behaviour Empirical evidence challenges the rationality assumption underlying modern economics and decision-making research. The objective of this seminar paper is to compare models of rational behaviour to empiric evidence, and to propose theoretical explanations for its deviation. Tillmann Neben
Affect and Emotions in IS Research The role of affect and emotions received an increased attention in information systems (IS) research recently. This is motivated by the fact that not all human decisions and behaviours can be explained by traditional cost-benefit economic rationality assumptions. The objective of this seminar paper is to provide insights on the empirical research in IS, incorporating affective constructs. First, the seminar paper should also a taxonomy or structural perspective on affective components used in IS research. Second, it should provide a methodological overview of these studies. Possible research questions could be: What are the various operationalization approaches to study emotions? What are the theories underlying IS research and how do these theories define affect? What are the methodologies applied in such studies? Aliona von der Trenck
Platform Ecosystems Platform ecosystems are emerging as a dominant model for software development and software-based services. Unlike traditional software development, platform ecosystems leverage the expertise of a diverse set of partners with skills and an appreciation of user needs that platform owners might not possess - to creatively develop new capabilities unforeseeable by the platforms original designers (Tiwana et al., 2010). The examples are manifold and range from the Apples iPhone operating system (iOS) and its 140,000 apps, SAP and its hundreds of partners as well as the XBOX and its more than 900 games.
Subtopic 1: Performance Management in Platform Ecosystems: In order to ensure the success of platform ecosystems, it is crucial for platform providers to carefully evaluate and track the performance of the ecosystem's participants. Your objective is to provide a comprehensive review of a set of academic literature on organizational performance evaluation in interfirm networks, strategic alliances, and consortia.
Subtopic 2: Architectural Management in Platform Ecosystems: Architecture is an important aspect of the lifecycle of platforms and the formation of network effects. Your objective is to provide a comprehensive review on the constituting factors of platform architecture and closing off with an appropriate classification scheme of platforms.
Subtopic 3: Flexibility in Platform Ecosystems: Strategic manoeuvres allow the platform provider to react to external events, thereby increasing the platform's flexibility. Your objective is to provide a comprehensive review on what is coined with the term organizational flexibility and closing off with an appropriate classification scheme of flexibility manoeuvres.
Jens Förderer
Coordination in Multiteam Systems Due to an ever growing demand for faster cycle times in software development, new paradigms such as agile and lean development have become prominent in theory and practise. In the past, large-scale projects have focused on long and rigorous planning activities to reduce risk and manage dependencies. With the help of lean and agile methods, the focus has shifted to shorter iterative planning and development cycles with continuous delivery of value to the customer. In this context, the coordination of several development teams is the essential topic for large-scale software development in order to improve the efficiency of the system. The respective seminar papers within this topic are supposed to address one or several of the following questions: What is the status quo of large-scale lean/agile software development? How do large-scale software development systems coordinate teams? Alexander Scheerer
Socio-technical Design Science in Healthcare Challenges and obstacles experienced in the healthcare environment are not only related to the technical environment, but more often related to the social and organizational characteristics. The technical field includes technologies and tasks. The social field includes structure and people. A socio-technical design aims on achieving a successful outcome by equally considering both fields and their interaction. Topics address the >socio< in socio-technical design science studies and ask the following questions: (1) What characterizes and advances the "socio" in "socio-technical" designs? (2) How can existing socio-technical design approaches help to improve the required work or process designs. (3) What are the shortcomings of existing socio-technical design approaches? Simon Hubert


Registration begins on Friday, December, 20th 2013

Please register via sending a mail to Simon Hubert (hubert(at) with the content:
- your name and student ID (Matrikelnummer)
- two preferred tracks from the table above in order of priority
- a copy of your bachelor diploma (for Master Students) and your current transcript of records (Notenspiegel).


  • The literature review should be done by students independently.
  • The review shall include electronic literature sources offered by the University of Mannheim (Rechercheportal)  as well as sources available on the internet.
  • Overviews of literature sources are available at the library and here.


  • <LINK _blank>Mandatory Guidelines</LINK>
  • <link - download>Short Introduction: Academic writing (German)</LINK>
  • <a href="" target="_blank">Conference and Journal Ranking (WIRTSCHAFTSINFORMATIK)</a>
  • <a href="" target="_blank">Journal Ranking (AIS)</a>
  • <LINK _blank>Word Template</LINK>
  • <LINK _blank>LaTeX template with instructions and sample document</LINK>