Stream contents

1) Business Models: A Knowledge-based View

Business models and business model innovation have recently become an increasingly important topic for research as well as business practice. Against the background of the definition by Zott and Amit (2010: 216) who characterize a business model “…as a system of interdependent activities that transcends the focal firm and spans its boundaries”, it seems to be likely that the choice of specific business model designs as well the process of business model innovation are influenced by knowledge transfer within the focal firm as well as between the focal firm and its network partners. This stream aims at deepening the understanding of the role knowledge transfer plays related to business model design and business model innovation. It invites both, theoretical and empirical papers, that contribute to this research area. Contributions may for example focus on topics such as:

2) Competitiveness, Globalization and the Organizations

Competitiveness is a pervasive construct in Business Management research. The core of the definition is about the capability of the firm to compete successfully. Being as vague as it seems, we can say that we know what it is not but we unknown what it is. Or we can say that we know what it is ex-post when we see the firm’s bottom line at the end of the year.

Among the variety of factors affecting the firm’s competitiveness, theories and scholars have usually put the focus following the swings of the pendulum. Industrial Organization  (IO) scholars claim that the industry features shape and restrict the variety of strategies available at hand of the firm. Advocates of resource- and knowledge-based views of the firm (RBV, KBV) state that it is up to the firm’s managers achieving and sustaining a competitive edge by combining certain resources and capabilities that meet the VRIN-O principle (these elements must be Valuable, Rare, difficult to Imitate and Non-substitutable while the Organization must be in a position to appropriate the rents derived). Rather than opposed, they should be considered as complementary perspectives that help scholars and practitioners understand how the firm can develop and sustain its competitive advantage

This call for research aims at considering these additional levels of research and to open new research avenues in the field of strategy and competitiveness, with a particular focus on SMEs and the intangibles sources of competitive advantage. The issue of competitiveness should be central in the papers. The social dimension and interactions among parties in cooperation agreements, the manager’s cognition in shaping the firm’s strategic choices are very welcome. The indicative rather than exhaustive topics to be considered in this track are as follows:

The core focus should be SMEs although research on other types of organizations is welcome if authors include an extension of their findings to the case of SMEs. Theoretical and empirical are welcome. Theoretical papers should clearly state which theoretical approach authors propose to follow and should be strongly based on extant literature. We seek scholarly sound, new provocative arguments and new insights in order to continue the academic conversations on the relevance of knowledge in the today’s and tomorrow’s competition.

3) Consumer Satisfaction and Retail

Retail industry is an important part of each national economy (in some European countries even 25% of all active companies are operating in this industry). The retail industry is the most sensitive to changes in consumer behaviour. It is the industry that firstly responds to both positive and negative trends in the environment. Therefore, retailers are constantly under pressure to assess consumer satisfaction and to adjust to customer needs rapidly. The recession and the rapid technological innovation puts even greater challenges in front of contemporary retailers because consumers are more and more sensitive to prices, on one hand, and they are excessively informed, on the other hand. So it gets harder and harder to maintain competitive advantage in satisfaction of their needs. The aim of this stream is to address the necessity for constant innovation and rapid knowledge creation cycles in companies in retail industry which enables fast and efficient satisfaction of consumer needs.

Topics of interest in this stream are:

4) Doctoral Workshop

We welcome short papers related to PhD thesis being done about TAKE.

5) Gaming in education, scientific and market research and business activity

Gamification is deployed in various contexts and is therefore an open and multifaceted concept with multiple applications (Langendahl, Cook and Mark-Herbert, 2016). The role of gamification – which may be defined as the use of game elements in non-game context – is expected to increase over the next years within a variety areas of application, such as learning and assessment, scientific and market research, promotion or business operations, etc. Its potential is related to, among others, the rise of new needs with the entering the labor market by the Y generation. The common purpose of gamification is to enhance one’s motivation (eg. students, employees, job candidates) and engagement in certain activities. Gamification is also an effective tool to help in problem solving which is also used as a support in research. Considering gaming as a research area it is important to distinguish between the process and the experience of gamification (Kari et al., 2016), in particular so called true game experience and its outcomes, methodological framework as well as implementation and evaluation of a models.

Although there is much theoretical support for the benefits of digital games in learning and education, there is mixed empirical support (McClarty et al., 2012). While the use of simulations and digital games in scientific research and business applications have become increasingly popular in recent years there is a need for further modeling and analyzing the empirical results of these applications. The use of gamification can help the company gain market advantage and increase of effectiveness of organizations. Thus there is bride room to investigate and discuss the roles of digital games as tutor, tool, and tutee for education as well as the effectiveness and potentials of gamification in scientific and business context.
This stream aims at deepening a contemporary understanding of gamification with a focus on (higher) education in particular and the role of gamification as a tool in scientific and market research, marketing, and business activity. It is focused also on identification and assessment of the opportunities and challenges of gamification. It invites both, theoretical and empirical papers, that contribute to this research area. Contributions may for example focus on topics such as:

•    Theory and research of the gamification - the structure, mechanisms and social context (including the influence on the psychology and behaviour of the player).
•    Game-based learning in education – the process and the experience, theory and research perspective.
•    Gamification as a tool in the modern education – applications, goals, outcomes, innovation, challenges.
•    Scientific and market research with the use of digital and video games – applications, effectiveness, future research perspectives.
•    The use of gamification within organizations activities: employees motivating (in particular generation Y), improving sales and recruitment processes, online marketing, social campaigns, etc.
•    The potential of gamification in applications for marketing strategies, as a modern form of promotion and business activities.
•    Game theory applications in business simulation games.

6) Education and Human Resource Development

Relevance of HRD Theories to Practice; Transfer of Training; Corporate Social Responsibility and HRD; National HRD Research, Theory, and Practice; Values and Ethics in HRD; Quality of Work Life; HRD’s Role in Community Development; HRD’s Role in Social Development; HRD’s Role in Economic Development; Information & Communication Technology and HRD; Workplace Learning; Social Networks in HRD; Innovative Practices of HRD; Performance and Career Development; Gender/Diversity and HRD; Global/Cross-Cultural HRD; Emerging Issues in HRD; HRD’s Role in Mergers and Acquisitions; Evaluation of HRD Activities; Relationship between HRD and HRM; Preparation of Expatriates for International Assignments.

7) Innovation and Entreperneurship

Massive technological progress in communication technology supports new forms of organizations and shift boundaries of innovation teams and networks. For entrepreneurs, this creates new opportunities to develop new products and services based on Intellectual Capital (IC) and knowledge.

Topics of interest include but are not limited to:

8) Intellectual capital and assets dynamics

Value creation is increasingly based on leveraging intangibles, but firms lack knowledge and skills on identifying, measuring and managing their intellectual capital. Also the existing academic literature on knowledge-based value creation seems to have concentrated on either IC stocks of firms or their management mechanisms (cf. Kianto et al. 2013). To produce a more complete picture of the tenets of organizational performance in the knowledge economy, this track examines both issues: IC stocks and knowledge management practices. 

The topics of papers could be e.g.

9) Knowledge management

Knowledge became in the last decades a strategic resource for business and managing knowledge constitutes a challenge for practitioners as well as for researchers in the field. Knowledge Management is a new field of research and although there are many international journals and conferences dedicated to this phenomenon it still needs efforts and creativity to discover the laws which govern its complexity and dynamics. This conference aims at being a forum of sharing our new ideas and research results about knowledge and knowledge management. The following are suggested area of interest for this stream without any limitations in complementing them with new topics:

•    Knowledge metaphors and new approaches to knowledge nature understanding.
•    Knowledge dynamics in organizations and its influence upon decision making.
•    Knowledge creation and knowledge acquisition.
•    Knowledge sharing and communities of practice. Intra-organizational and inter-organizational knowledge sharing.
•    Knowledge loss and knowledge retention. Intergenerational knowledge transfer.
•    Knowledge and organizational learning. Knowledge and organizational entropy.
•    Knowledge strategies in turbulent business environments and crazy times.
•    Information management and knowledge management. Learning from big data and crowdsourcing

10) Practitioner's Track

In this stream we look for contributions from managers and practitioners in the various fields on the knowledge economy which relate to the difference between the theory and the practice. We welcome also discussions about practice or about the nonexistence or unawareness about knowledge. We hope to succeed having companies and organizations representing the knowledge economy in this track.

11) Public Policies

In this stream we look for contributions on the application of policies, and the difference between theories and applications within those policies. Governance is an important topic and experiences may relate to sectors has political science, education, health, social security, etc.

12)  Supply Chain Management

Papers in the stream are invited (but not limited) to address the following questions:

1. Individual KM:

a. Overwhelmed by knowledge – how can/should we cope with increasing availability of knowledge, growing demand for a widening range of knowledge, and apparently accelerating evolution of knowledge?

b. What are challenges of today and tomorrow to logistics practitioners and supply chain managers in individual knowledge acquisition, application, sharing?

2. KM to support experience-based learning:

a. How might companies cope with a potential loss of experience in project-based professions caused by recent and future demographic development? Does KM help?

b. What are promising approaches or best practices in maintaining company experience despite of retiring experts? How knowledge and experience might be directly or indirectly transferred from well-experiences experts to well-trained young professionals?

3. The role of KM in Industry 4.0 / cyber-physical systems:

a. What will be the role of persons after the 4th industrial revolution aiming for directly and automatically connecting products, production facilities and partners in the supply chain?

b. Which role KM will (or will have to) play in industrial systems of the future – enabler, supporter, book-keeper/reporter?

4. Logistics and supply chain KM in cases:
(practical experiences and there theoretical background)

a. What are successful (or even unsuccessful) KM implementations in logistics companies/organizations and/or supply chains?

b. What are best practices to be shared, what are problems or challenges to be aware of?

c. Are there sectoral or national studies on the role of knowledge in logistics services and companies or alongside supply chains/networks?

We will be also glad to provide a platform for discussing your specific needs for KM in logistics and your specific problems in implementing KM in a logistics/supply chain background.

13)  Accounting Systems and Auditing

As an important part of information system, accounting is an inevitable source of information for business decision making. The importance of accounting system is recognized by different users. It is the most regulated information system within the entity. It offers wide variety of information; planned and realised, detail and summarized, etc. On the other hand, internal controls and different types of auditing increase confidence in accounting information. Internal control systems express managements' effort in the improvement of business operation. Since International financial reporting standards are principle oriented standards, gathering knowledge about different techniques and methods that arise from their application can be an interesting field of research.

The aim of this stream is to remark that internal controls, the application of accounting standards, and different types of auditing can influence financial information disclosed in principle financial statements. Since the accounting standards have been a subject to change, it is important to investigate their impact on information. Furthermore, research results on auditing methodology, standards, reports, etc. and can enhance knowledge in the profession that is of great priority to the users of accounting information.

Topics of interest in this stream are:

•    Accounting information systems as the source of business oriented knowledge

•    Spreading knowledge of International financial reporting standards and specifics in national general accepted accounting principles

•    ''New'' EU accounting directive – Let's find out what happened after the implementation period

•    Internal controls, auditing (internal, external, governmental) – new perspectives

•    Analysis of financial statements and business decision making process