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RRBM Honor Roll Acceptance

A recent research article co-authored by Dr. Florian Köhne from the JKU Institute for Entrepreneurship has been accepted into the Honor Roll of Responsible Research in Business & Management (RRBM). The Honor Roll is an organization developed by leading business school academics dedicated to recognizing research “that is both rigorous and relevant” and “offers credible insights for society”.

Together with Professor Benson Honig from the McMaster University and Dr. Rick Woodward from the University of Edinburgh, Dr. Köhne explored why good entrepreneurial intentions do not always lead to good outcomes and how the risk of producing negative social impact can be reduced when working with disadvantaged others.

The article has been published in the Journal of Business Venturing and is available here, opens an external URL in a new window.

JKU Students win L'Oréal Brandstorm Hackathon

Students in the advanced Innovation and Entrepreneurship course kicked off this semester with an international entrepreneurship competition organized by the French personal care company L'Oréal. During the first week of the course, students developed innovative business opportunities driven by the latest tech developments that included augmented reality, artificial intelligence, virtual reality, and the metaverse. L'Oréal selected two JKU student teams, inviting them to participate in the final DACH region competition at the company’s headquarters in Düsseldorf.

Founders.Week get2gether 2022

At the end of 2022, the Institute for Entrepreneurship and the OIC invited all of the participants from last year's Founders.Weeks, along with those interested in start-up companies, to a get2gether at the LIT Open Innovation Center.

In addition to an opportunity to have professional team photos taken, there was a review of the past Founders.Week and its highlights as well as an outlook on the upcoming 2023 Founders.Week. Refreshments were provided, including Prof. Berger's homemade non-alcoholic punch, hot mulled wine, along with pizza. While we hope to have taken care of everyone's physical well-being, we hope everyone keeps thirst for knowledge in the future!

All in all, we were pleased with the turnout of around 30 people interested in entrepreneurship. We would like to thank all of the participants as well as the photographer, Christian Biemann, for making the evening a success and we look forward to 2023, especially to Founders.Week in September. Save the date: September 18 - 22, 2023.


Photos: Christian Biemann

How can social entrepreneurs create and maintain hope in humanitarian crises?

Over the past months, Europe has been shaken by several crises that require quick and targeted action in order to counteract social problems as effectively and efficiently as possible. As negative as these developments are, the arising social problems call for action and pose opportunities for social entrepreneurs to address them. But how do social entrepreneurs manage to tackle these problems in crisis situations in the best possible way, address the right problems, and safely scale existing solutions?


The head of the institute for entrepreneurship Elisabeth Berger has teamed up with five entrepreneurship researchers from various European countries to find answers to precisely these questions. Together with Andreas Kuckertz (University of Hohenheim), Ondrej Dvoulety (Prague University of Economics and Business), Rainer Harms (University of Twente), Sarah Jack (Stockholm School of Economics) and Ewald Kibler (Aalto University) they discussed opportunities and challenges of social entrepreneurs in humanitarian crises. Their work also sheds light on the role of creating and maintaining hope in this context.

The results of their research area now published in the paper "Scaling the right answers - Creating and maintaining hope through social entrepreneurship in light of humanitarian crises" in the Journal of Business Venturing Insights.

Read the paper here, opens an external URL in a new window.

New publication: The potentials and perils of prosocial power: Transnational social entrepreneurship dynamics in vulnerable places

This new publication addresses why and how the prosocial power of different types of transnationally embedded social entrepreneurs can lead to positive or negative social impact in vulnerable places.

Social entrepreneurs can be powerful change agents for alleviating the suffering of the disadvantaged. However, their prosocial motivation and behavior frequently result in detrimental impacts on those they intend to support, especially when their operations span different socio-spatial contexts. The article is based on a multiple comparative case study among 12 transnational social entrepreneurs of foreign, domestic non-indigenous, and local indigenous origin, who are seeking to improve the livelihoods of indigenous communities in rural Ecuador. The authors introduce the concept of prosocial power to social entrepreneurship research and demonstrate how it can work as a double-edged sword in the hands of transnationally embedded social entrepreneurs who operate in vulnerable places. Context-bound variations in social distance, bi-directional learning, reflexive impact measurement, and socio-spatial dominance were identified as being decisive for prosocial power to lead to positive or negative impacts on disadvantaged others.

The article is co-authored by Florian Koehne (Institute for Entrepreneurship – Johannes Kepler University), Rick Woodward (The University of Edinburgh Business School), and Benson Honig (DeGroote School of Business - McMaster University). It is published in the Journal of Business Venturing (Impact Factor: 12.065)

The article can be accessed via: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0883902622000180, opens an external URL in a new window

New publication "The interplay of digital transformation and employee competency: A design science approach"

The new publication "The interplay of digital transformation and employee competency: A design science approach" in Technological Forecasting and Social Change, opens an external URL in a new window focusses on the linkage of individual competency and organization's level of digital transformation.

While researchers underline that the movement toward digitalization is a challenge influencing various dimensions, studies to date have primarily focused on digitalization's technological and organizational aspects. Consequently, this article takes a human-centered view of digital transformation at the intersection of digital and human transformation. Applying design science research, a framework was designed that clearly reveals: IT is the enabler, but employees' competency will ensure that companies are well-equipped to pursue digital transformation. The final framework illustrates the interplay between the individual and organizational levels; a combination of intrapreneurial and digital competencies enables employees to actively shape the transformation. Hence, instead of being purely affected by digitalization, employees based on their competencies function as triggers to reach the next level of digital transformation.

The article is the result of the interdisciplinary research work of Christine Blanka (Institute for Entrepreneurship) and Barbara Krumay and David Rückel (Institute for Information Systems - Information Engineering), published in the journal "Technological Forecasting & Social Change" (Impact Factor: 8.593).

The article can be accessed via: https://authors.elsevier.com/sd/article/S0040-1625(22)00107-X, opens an external URL in a new window

GUESSS AUSTRIA 2021 - Global University Entrepreneurial Spirit Students Survey 2021 out now

The Global University Entrepreneurial Spirit Students Survey (GUESSS) an international online survey that focuses on the entrepreneurial potential and start-up activities of students at universities from 2021 has been released.

The current study is based on the responses of 267,000 students from 58 countries worldwide - new record numbers. The Austrian country study was conducted by the Institute for Corporate Management and Entrepreneurship at the University of Graz (Prof. Gutschelhofer, opens an external URL in a new window) in cooperation with the institute for entrepreneurship  at the JKU namely Univ.-Prof. Dr. Norbert Kailer, opens an external URL in a new window.

The Austrian country report is based on 3,236 students participating from 43 universities and universities of applied sciences. The report is available here, opens an external URL in a new window.

A special report was conducted for the Johannes Kepler University (JKU) Linz due to the highest participation of all universities. The JKU's participation included 431 completed questionnaires, which corresponds to 13.3% of the Austrian version of the survey. Comparing the results of the JKU with those of the other universities, the university’s offers for the development of entrepreneurship-related competences at the JKU are evaluated better than the national average. Likewise, the entrepreneurial intentions of JKU students are higher than the national average.

Both the national report and the JKU report reveal that students are interested in the topic of entrepreneurship and see Austrian universities as a good environment in which to start a business and to learn practical skills such as business management and business understanding. The existing entrepreneurship activities and courses of the universities have a positive effect on students with an interest in entrepreneurship. Students are increasingly interested in the professional option of self-employment, especially in starting their own business (8% directly after graduation, 27% five years after graduation - based on the overall survey in Austria).

This illustrates the long-term effect of entrepreneurship education on students to support them in their future careers. As a result, the importance of entrepreneurship education becomes evident.

In order to meet this need, the JKU and especially the Institute for Entrepreneurship headed by Prof. Dr. Elisabeth Berger, opens an external URL in a new window are offering courses that on the one hand provide the basics of entrepreneurship and on the other hand allow students to experience entrepreneurship by getting started with it. The institute offers practice-oriented formats as well as lectures focusing on the development of own business ideas in real settings. See the courses offered, opens an external URL in a new window by the institute this summer semester.

Entrepreneurial Spirit at the Founders Week 2021

The Founders Week 2021 – This unique summer school for Entrepreneurs and Innovators once again inspired many people interested in founding a company
Insight Founders.Week 2021

Over one week in September, 14 students in 4 teams successfully developed their ideas, created business models, and presented a project pitch. Once again, the Founders.Week has seen a creative and diverse set of ideas, ranging from a platform for application videos, learning programs for youth and children, and regional shopping to the purification of wastewater to improve the water supply in Africa.

Throughout the week, the teams participated in various workshops such as design thinking, business modeling, and pitching. A team of mentors and experts from Patentamt, LeitnerLeitner, Hasele und Nagele, Lunik 2, and many more, supported the teams by sharing their expertise and giving the students the opportunity to build up their network. 

At the closing event on Friday the 24th of September in the LIT Open Innovation Center, the four teams pitched their concepts to a great jury consisting of Christopher Lindinger, Elisabeth Berger, Raphael Friedl and Elisabeth Ulbrich, who chose the projects "Desin-up" and "vicap" as the winners. The team from “Desin-up" developed a concept to clean wastewater using electrolyzed water, thus improving the water supply in Nigeria in particular. "vicap" intends to create a platform where short application videos can be used to connect job seekers with companies. 

We want to thank all participants, experts, and sponsors of the Founders. Week 2021 for an exciting and insightful week and look forward to seeing some of the projects come to life.