Joint PhD Program Digital Business International

The PhD Program „Digital Business International“ is a joint initiative of University of Applied Sciences Upper Austria (UASUA) and Johannes Kepler University of Linz (JKU) together with the local government of Upper Austria.

Outline: Living in the Digital Business era, today we are witnessing rapid social and technological developments in electronic/mobile/social commerce (no-line commerce). Digital Business managers, as well as system engineers, are daily confronted with the challenges resulting from these rapid developments. Among others, designing innovative web user interfaces, along with conversion optimization, are major activities defining firms’ success potential. Understanding of user behavior and information needs on the one hand, but also relevant concepts, processes, and technologies on the other hand, is an inevitable precondition for designing and managing online businesses successfully in the context of Internet commerce and online innovation.

All PhD positions are assigned for the moment. No new applications are accepted.

PhD Candidates

Topic: Technostress in Organizations

The introduction of information and communication technologies (ICT) in work environments has led to multiple benefits for individual employees (e.g., automation of tedious tasks) and organizations (e.g., reduced cycle times, cost savings, and innovations). However, in recent years it has also been acknowledged that stress is a ubiquitous phenomenon in the workplace throughout organizations worldwide despite the high degree of ICT use in many organizations. Researchers have even started pointing to the significant potential of ICT to act as a new source of work stress. This form of stress is referred to as technostress.

Main Research Question: How and why does technostress (TS) occur in organizations, and how do employees cope with it? 


Topic: Trust in Autonomous Vehicles

Self-driving vehicles and autonomous driving may be the most significant innovation in transport since the first automobiles were invented. They could radically transform how people travel with profound implications for safety, equity and the environment. Today’s companies like Google, Uber and Tesla have already launched vehicles where automation is gradually taking over the driver’s role and soon learning how to drive will no long be necessary.
Nevertheless, it is expected that autonomous vehicles will only be used when customers believe them to be trustworthy and safe. Research in driving automation and autonomous vehicles is the focus of many researches and practitioners, and trust is particularly important determinant of reliance on and acceptance of automation. However, the clear overview of factors that influence trust in autonomous where psychological aspects of trust associated with engineering trust issues are explained, are still missing. Currently on maternity leave.
Main Research Question: What are the factors that influence trust in autonomous vehicles?


Topic: Effects of integrating learning techniques into an e-learning system

E-learning systems became increasingly popular and are being more and more accepted in the recent years in the educational environment. Whereas such e-learning systems are at the moment primarily used as Content Management Systems to spread learning documents among students. The long-term application of learning techniques and the optimization of the individual learning behavior is not supported in the present systems. Scientific research proves, that the knowledge about their own learning behavior supports students significantly to improve and reach their learning goals efficiently and effectively. The developed e-learning system should provide a long-term learning companion, which provides continues feedback to optimize the learning behavior.
Main Research Question: What are the effects of integrating learning techniques into an e-learning system?

Supervisory Team

Johannes Kepler University of Linz

Univ. Prof. DDr. Johann Höller

University of Applied Sciences Upper Austria

FH-Prof. Dr. Andreas Auinger

University of Applied Sciences Upper Austria

Assoc. Univ. Prof. FH-Prof. Dr. René Riedl

Further Information

Land Oberösterreich sponsors the main part (€ 500.000 for 2015-2019) of the funding jointly with UASUA for this PhD program in the form of stipends for international PhD students.