Final Theses

Seven steps towards your thesis...

Step 1: Clarify admission requirements

In general, you can start your bachelor thesis if ...

  • You have submitted a term paper according to the examination regulations BWL (PStO 2008). Seminars at ISTO where the assignments qualify for a Bachelor thesis according to the examination regulations are indicated respectively. Generally, these are advanced seminars with 6 ECTS.
  • You have passed the advanced seminar in the module "Vertiefung der Betriebswirtschaftslehre" (compulsory seminar) in accordance with the examination regulations BWL (PStO 2015).

For master's thesis, no formal prerequisites.

Please pay close attention to the Information and Service Center Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Prüfungen (ISC) for the PStO 2008 and PStO 2015.

Step 2: Check the chair-specific requirements

When assigning bachelor theses, we give preference to students who have demonstrated interest in our topics. Students increase their chances when they

  • successfully participated in one of the lectures: "Management and Economics of Platforms", "Technology & Strategy", or "Strategic Organization Design" and
  • have participated in at least one seminar that is indicated accordingly.

Note: The choice of the latter may, but does not have to coincide with the (advanced) seminar, which generally entitles you to write a Bachelor thesis according to PStO 2008 or 2015 (see step 1).

For master's theses, preference is given to students who have successfully participated in

  • the lecture "Competitive Strategy (formerly Strategy & Innovation)" or
  • the seminars "Empirics of Organizations" and "Frontiers in Strategy Research".

Step 3: Choice of topic

Before contacting us, we encourage you to compare your personal interests with the list of possible topics for final papers. Please find information on current research projects of our academic staff on our website.

Step 4: Contact

Based on step 3, consider which topic(s) you would be interested in. Send your preferences to We will then find a suitable supervisor for you.
Please also submit the following documents:

  • field of study, matriculation number, current semester, preferred time period for working on your thesis (At ISTO, you can start working on your thesis on the first Monday of a month. The deadline is then automatically determined by the maximum time allowed for completion.)
  • current curriculum vitae
  • list of courses attended at the ISTO as well as your latest online transcript

Step 5: Select a topic and supervisor

Based on your preferences, we will try to find a supervisor whose research best suits your interests. In a preliminary talk, the supervisor proposes different topics, and you will be able, if applicable, to incorporate your ideas. In the wake of this conversation, we will ask you for a one to two page sketch on the subject as well as an overview of relevant literature. In particular, this should emphasize your contribution to the current state of research.

Step 6: Registration at the Examinations Office

The thesis is registered with the Examination Office at the latest four weeks after agreement on the topic. The deadline for submitting the work is determined at the time of registration.

Step 7: Editing, Presentation, and Submission

We recommend that you write your thesis in English. Please adhere exactly to our formal guidelines. Make sure to query formal questions (PDF, 334 KB) with your supervisor at an early stage. Students writing a final paper at ISTO will present their work at the Institute's internal Thesis Colloquium. The aim of the presentation is to give the students constructive feedback on their work. The presentations are each ten minutes long, followed by about ten minutes of feedback, and are held in English. These should usually reveal the status of the work, open questions and further steps, and in particular elucidate the research question and methodology. Make sure you know the formal requirements of the Examination Office (ISC). Please hand in the required number of copies of your thesis independently and on time to the Examination Office and inform your supervisor about your planned filing date.

Supervised topics for final theses

Alexey Rusakov (

I am interested in research that deals with digital technologies and their influence on competition among companies. What are the strategic challenges of companies in times of changing business structures and emergence of new business concepts in light of digitization? What market segments are affected? How should companies address these challenges? I am also interested in topics that deal with platform markets. How do complements affect the platform market? What are the incentives behind first-party complements for the market participants?

I mainly supervise quantitative bachelor theses, dealing with these topics. I am also open for related topic suggestions. Other methodological approaches (e.g. literature-based) are acceptable, too.

Joy Wu (

I conduct research on the economics of digitization with a focus on questions related to user behavior on online platforms. Here, I am mostly interested in research that considers the (perceived) ownership of information and how people value the information they consume or produce on platforms. However, I am open to any research on individual choices and attitudes that are valuable to platform strategy and governance. As a result, my research projects lie at the intersection of platform strategy, behavioral economics, and information systems research. I use quantitative methodology, with a focus on experimental economics methods and survey instruments.

I generally supervise quantitative (Master’s) theses in these areas, but I am generally open for related topics.

Ambre Nicolle (

My research primarily focuses on the demand and supply sides in network and digitized industries. I use structural approaches and observational data to model consumer behavior (e.g. discrete choice models). I also use various reduced-form approaches (e.g. differences-in-differences) to comment on the development of prices and variety of products in network and platform markets. More generally, I am interested in competitive strategy and strategic decision-making of firms.

I supervise quantitative theses on these topics, but I am also open for related topic suggestions.

Safia Bouacha (

My research interests center around the impact of modern technologies on organizations and on innovation in general, with a narrow lens on the tradeoffs that must be navigated as we adapt to the rapidly changing technological landscape. I'm particularly interested in open-source software and hardware, and how platforms foster open innovation. As well as the rising use of open-source products in the industry and the evolution of open-source ecosystems with significant industrial players.

I primarily supervise quantitative Bachelor theses in these areas, but I am also open to considering related topics.

Katerina Dubovska (

My research focuses on the economics of digitalization, especially on the functioning and competition aspects of digital platforms as well as on the role of user data. Moreover, I am interested in development perspectives and challenges of mergers in the digital economy. I use quantitative methodology and large datasets from various contexts to answer my research questions.

I supervise quantitative bachelor theses in these areas, but I am also open to related topic suggestions. Other methodological approaches (e.g. case study, literature-based) are acceptable, too.

Elisa Gerten (

I specialize in research related to information and communication technology (ICT) and its impact on organizational dynamics. My primary focus areas include examining the influence of digital technologies on organizational hierarchies and job design, exploring sustainability and management practices within the context of ICT adoption, analyzing management strategies in the era of modern technologies, investigating the impact of ICT adoption on performance-based pay structures in organizations, and studying the effects of team-based technological advancements. Additionally, I am interested in assessing the transferability of work experience gained in the gig economy to traditional employment settings for labor market entrants, thereby especially exploring the role of women in the gig economy.

I primarily supervise quantitative theses on these topics but I am open to considering related research inquiries. Other methodological approaches are also welcomed. Please feel free to reach out with your research proposal or topic suggestion.

JUNIOR MANAGEMENT SCIENCE - the academic journal for theses in business and management studies!

JUMS is the academic journal to publish outstanding theses in business and management. The anonymized thesis runs through a review process and will be published afterwards. JUMS is accompanied by over 50 professors of more than 30 universities.

Is your thesis one of the best in business studies and management? Submit your thesis and receive valuable feedback by top academics. Your thesis can be quoted and is accessible worldwide. Make your result and knowledge acessible to both academia and society. Additionally, you will receive two reports, helping you to improve in the future.

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