The Faculty of Social Sciences, Economics & Business Introduces Itself

Originally from Hungary, Prof. Henriett Primecz now teaches and conducts research at the JKU’s Institute of International Management.

Henriett Primecz
Henriett Primecz

What is your area of research?
Henriett Primecz: I focus on areas in the field of intercultural management, gender and diversity.

What is the field of intercultural management about?
Henriett Primecz: Intercultural management is simply focusing on how people of different cultural backgrounds can work effectively together, covering various aspects such as efficiency at multinational companies and working effectively as part of a multicultural team, as well as how to collaborate respectfully with others and be creative in this type of environment.

Why did you choose to come to the JKU and why is the JKU special?
Henriett Primecz: I am particularly interested in intercultural management with a focus on diversity management and I find the department to be very international. Students come from all over the world. In addition, as part of the professorship position, the research aspect was strongly highlighted and this fits in perfectly with my career plans. I hope that I can also contribute significantly to the university’s advancement and development.

What do you find particularly fascinating about your area of research?
Henriett Primecz: I like to discover the things are really important to people and where they can potentially improve their lives. The cultural context adds an extra layer of momentum and passion to any type of research. This is why my past research endeavors have focused on, among other things, women leaders in Africa, integrating those with disabilities into the workforce, and the inclusion and exclusion of in the LGBT community.

Why is this research even necessary, meaning how will it improve our lives?
Henriett Primecz: I am research-oriented and I strongly believe that research will help us to better understand the societies and organizations we work in. The better we understand the world around us, the better and more effectively we can live and work in this ever-changing world. The exciting thing about social sciences is that humans are the object and subject of research and each finding directly impacts our lives.

Why should students take your classes?
Henriett Primecz: When it comes to teaching, I like to combine theory with real-world practices. Most students tend to believe theory is not particularly necessary - they prefer hands-on practice. I enjoy showing them just how useful theory actually is! Once they understand that theory does not produce short-term explanations, they are more willing to learn the theories as well.

What are you currently working on?
Henriett Primecz: One of my most recent studies focuses on the advancement of women in Eastern Europe (Czechia, Slovakia, Poland, and Hungary). We are looking at why women are not rising to top management positions to the same extent that they are rising to middle management positions, an area in which women are actually fairly well represented (30-40%). We surveyed HR consultants and company decision-makers in these countries to find out.

What are your hobbies?
Henriett Primecz: I am interested in history and politics, as well as traveling, languages, and getting to know new cultures better. I enjoy the theater, the opera, and the ballet. As for sports activities, I enjoying swimming as well as playing tennis and squash.

What else do you want to do or achieve in your life?
Henriett Primecz: There is a long list of countries I have yet to visit, as well as a long list of countries I have been to and would like to visit again. This will most certainly keep me busy for a while!