Bachelor's Thesis

BA 450 for Bachelor's program (Business Administration)

General Information

Spring 2019
Lecturer Prof. Dr. Armin Heinzl
Course Format Thesis
Credit Points 12 ECTS
Language English
Information for Students Information regarding theses of other degree courses can be found at our academic theses page.
Nele Lüker, M.Sc.

Nele Lüker, M.Sc.

Contact person for Bachelor's Thesis

For further information please contact Nele Lüker.

    Course Information

  • Procedure

    Deadline Event
    tba Registration in Portal2; priorities after official enrollment via CV Portal
    tba Topics will be published on this website
    tba Kick-off meeting
    tba Announcement of topic assignment
    tba Deadline for submission of thesis
    tba Results will be announced
  • Brief Description

    Individuals and organizations operate in a world that is increasingly permeated with digital technology. Every day we interact with Information Systems (IS) that make our phones smart, our cars safe, and our lives convenient. Likewise, Information Systems are embedded in the very core of the products, operations, and strategies of many organizations. Ever more, understanding and leveraging Information Systems is key to business success, not only for large and experienced players like SAP and Google, but also for small start-ups. The pervasive nature of digital technology is radically transforming our understanding of Information Systems, encompassing their development, coordination, use, and the way we interact with them. The primary objective of this seminar is to shed light on these issues and enrich our knowledge about how information systems impact organizations and individuals.

  • Exemplary Topics

    Exemplary Topics Topic Description Associated Advisors
    A: Digital Mobility Index in the Railway Industry
    A leading European railway corporation is aggressively pursuing its digital transformation initiative to maintain its position as a leading mobility service provider in Europe. For this reason, it seeks to develop a novel Digital Mobility Index that (a.) captures major input and output indicators of digital mobility, (b.) informs the company about digital activities of its competitors including adjacent modes of transportation, (c.) demonstrates the effectiveness/impact of own initiatives, and (d.) provides stimuli for improving/accelerating own project initiatives. This bachelor thesis seeks to analyze existing digital mobility indices in order to develop a tailored index concept for the respective railway. Prof. Armin Heinzl
    B: IT Outsourcing in the Age of Digital Transformation
    In the past decades, IT Outsourcing has become a popular managerial instrument to increase the efficiency of the corporate IT function. However, the role of IT has been considerably changing from a productivity tool to an enabler of new digital products and services in order to defend firms against digital disruption. This bachelor thesis should help to illustrate how the role of IT Outsourcing is changing from cost containment through infrastructure, business process and systems standardization towards digital innovation and disruption. It seeks to demonstrate this new role via examples from the literature and the internet. Prof. Armin Heinzl
    C: IT Shared Service Centers - A Replication Study
    Instead of externalizing their IT functions to independent service providers, many European multinationals manage large parts of their IT function as Shared Service Centers (SSCs) with financial and managerial links. In order to assess the current and future role of these SSCs, a replication study via social media is deemed to be prospective. The candidate of the bachelor thesis has to assess the literature, modify an existing survey instrument, collect the data from IT managers in Europe via social media, and conduct the data analysis with the help of statistical software program. The results will be compared to a past study as a basis for interpretation. Prof. Armin Heinzl
    D: Innovation in Cancer Treatment
    With nearly 8.8 million yearly lethal causalities, cancer can be considered as one of the major causes of death. The treatment of cancer is a long-term process and requires huge personnel and financial investments. Germany alone spends more than 350 million Euro to cover health care expenditures. However, not even half of all German hospitals have been able to generate profits in 2017 even though they are experiencing constantly rising revenues (Roland Berger 2017). Through new emerging technological solutions hospitals obtain new possibilities to generate revenue streams. The bachelor thesis is in the context of the “hospital of the future” which is created in the Mannheim Molecular Intervention Environment (M2OLIE). M²OLIE combines research in medicine, engineering, natural sciences, and business management to improve tumor therapy by means of molecular intervention. The long-term goal is the establishment of an Integrated Practice Unit that achieves treatment of cancer patients in a one-day outpatient scenario – a so called one-stop shop approach. M2OLIE functions as platform for science and industry to participate in a new innovative environment for cancer treatment. M2OLIE is funded by the German Government and currently includes more than 20 different partners from science and industry.

    The aim of the bachelor thesis is to explore how new, innovative business models result for M2OLIE from IT innovations in healthcare by examining one of the following technological changes: platform ecosystems in healthcare, data infrastructure (data-as-a-service), tumor board applications or artificial intelligence.
    Dr. Okan Aydingül
    Ekaterina Jussupow
    E: Use of mHealth Applications
    An increasing number of individuals use mobile health (mHealth), such as Apple Health, Google Fit, and other mHealth applications, to adopt healthy behaviors and improve health outcomes. However, the extent to which use of mHealth impacts the desired outcomes varies. This thesis takes the viewpoint of information systems research to investigate why use of mHealth does not always result in improved outcomes, how the technology can adapt to individuals to be more effective, and which theories have been applied to capture this phenomenon. It thereby focuses on reviewing the literature in order to bring together research related to adaptive mHealth, behavior change, and effective use. Monica Fallon
    F: Competition in Platform Ecosystems
    In platform ecosystems, the platform owner (e.g., Apple, Google) co-creates value with independent third-party providers (i.e., complementors) of complementary products (e.g., applications). Although platform owners rely on the participation of complementors (e.g., they provide innovative applications which extend the platform’s scope and make it more attractive to users), platform owners occasionally compete against them by providing first-party products. This active participation may have significant influences on complementors and the competitive environment of the platform ecosystem. In a bachelor thesis within this topic area, students are expected to review extant literature related to competition within platform ecosystems and to gather practical examples of platform owner entry events in predefined contexts. André Halckenhäußer
    G: Motivations to Support Hard Forks in Public Blockchains
    Blockchain technology has the potential to disrupt many industries. Public blockchains, such as Ethereum or Bitcoin, constitute open, distributed platforms with various actors. These actors develop and run distributed applications, provide services, exchange value tokens such as cryptocurrencies, and engage in many forms of transactions – all based on the blockchain as a shared but distributed database of historical transactions. Changes to this distributed system (e.g., protocol updates or changes to the transaction history) require a general consensus among all actors. Otherwise, actors who oppose to a particular change may simply not change their nodes in the distributed system, which results in a “hard fork” of the blockchain: one part of the blockchain splits off. The two resulting chains have a common history of transactions but divide at a specific point in time from where they progress independently.

    This thesis investigates a) which actors are decisive for hard forks in blockchain ecosystems and b) what motivates them to support or oppose forking of their blockchain. To do so, the thesis draws on academic literature on blockchain systems and software development. In particular, the thesis draws parallels to research on the forking of open source software development projects and shows where this stream of research can provide insights into the forking of blockchains and where further research is necessary.
    Dr. Kai Spohrer
    H: Organizational Value Creation from Predictive Analytics and Machine Learning
    Organizations around the world hope to realize significant benefits from digitization and, as part of their efforts, seek to apply big data analytics (BDA) in their business operations. They strive to achieve diverse value targets such as improved organizational performance or product & service innovation (Grover et al., 2018) and they can choose from a plethora of algorithms, tools, and platforms. The bachelor thesis will be based on a structured literature review and (i) provide a descriptive analysis of characteristics of commercially available BDA platforms and tools or (ii) detail out value creation paths based on selected cases. A particular focus of the work will be on predictive analytics and machine learning. Pascal Kunz
    I: Agile Requirements Engineering In recent years software development took a shift towards agile methodologies like SCRUM, Kanban or Extreme Programming to deliver business value in short iterations. This shift includes that requirements and solutions evolve through the collaborative effort of self-organizing and cross-functional teams as well as the software user. Therefore, also the principles and methods of requirement engineering changed to integrate stakeholder and user involvement now throughout the whole development process.
    The aim of the Bachelor’s thesis should be a structured literature review about recent research in regards of stakeholder integration and user involvement especially in the after-deployment phase.
    Philipp Hoffmann
  • Literature

    • The literature review should be done by students independently
    • The review should 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 Mannheim University Library