Research, Partners and Publications

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We provide comprehensive, multifaceted, wide-ranging and international view.

In Research, we aim to achieve empirical, practically relevant and internationally visible knowledge. This appears in over 700 publications, including more than 350 journal/conference papers with more than two dozen awards, especially for PhD students (e.g., by the European Marketing Academy, American Marketing Association, European International Business Academy, Academy of International Business), as well as 60 books (e.g., the standard works on Retail Management and International Marketing in the DACH-Countries, as well as the book series “Retail and International Marketing” in Springer Gabler-Publishing company, in which dissertations are published).

We are happy to cover a breadth of topics in our articles that deal with either Retail Management, Branding or International Marketing-Management, or often merge those topics (e.g. E-Commerce internationalization). We do not follow any single theory or theoretical tendency. Instead, we choose appropriate theoretical foundations based on the particular real phenomenon or state of research, as well as research gap within the literature. In this respect, we are occasionally involved in psychological consumer behavior theories and management-oriented or economic theories/approaches. Similarly, we use primary and secondary data for empirical observation, on consumer and company levels, while using the appropriate methodology, whether we have cross-sectional data, panel data, or longitudinal data. However, we often use non-recursive, reciprocal modeling and likewise hierarchical structural equation modeling.

More than 130 papers have appeared in prestigious journals such as Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, Journal of Retailing, Social Indicators Research, Management International Review, Journal of International Management, Journal of International Marketing, International Business Research, Journal of Small Business Management, Business & Society, Long Range Planning, International Journal of Electronic Commerce, Decision Support Systems, Journal of Business Research, Journal of International Entrepreneurship, International Marketing Review, Journal of Consumer Behavior, Journal of Retailing & Consumer Services, International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, Marketing ZFP–Journal of Research and Management, The International Review of Retail, Distribution and Consumer Research, Cross Cultural & Strategic Management, etc. Professor Swoboda has been Editor-in-Chief of the Marketing ZFP–Journal of Research and Management (leading Marketing Journal in the DACH-Countries) and chairman of the Scientific Commission International Management within the Scientific Association of Business Administration in German-speaking countries.

Retail Management, Branding and Consumer Marketing

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Management of offline and online retail corporations is becoming increasingly complex as a result of the forthcoming digitalization and related vertical, horizontal and international interdependency. This development is reflected in our research program in multiple ways.

In addition to the traditional research questions, such as positioning, location, assortment and price analysis, we also address newer ones in retailing and E-Commerce. Corporate and Retail Branding has already stood as a focal point of the Chair for Marketing and Retailing for a long time as the understanding of offline and online retailing as a brand has still only slightly matured. We are currently devoting ourselves, especially to the phenomenon of interdependency between the evaluation of store brand and corporate reputation, between offline and online brand equity or images, and through customers, as well as the integration of channels or touchpoints in omni-channel -systems. The unique feature is that we do not only address the customer's point of view but also the leadership challenges of managers in offline, online and omni-channel corporations.

For branded goods corporations, today's challenges include the verticalization of distribution (both offline and online) and the guarantee of cross-border uniform or country-specific validity of the product and corporate brand. In this research field, we focus on the one hand on the effects of global product- and corporate brands in emerging markets such as China or industrialized countries such as the USA or Japan and on the other hand - using hierarchical structural equation modeling - on perceptions and effects of corporate brands in a cross-national context. Those we apply to analyze in different external contexts (such as economic, legal, normative or cultural country differences) as well as internal contextual decisions (such as experience, commitment, success of corporations in the countries). At the same time, we also look at important phenomena such as corporate social responsibility, corporate innovation, image transfer between global products and company brands, or the interfaces between trade and industry, for example in the course of successful global account management.

International Commerce and International Branding

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Today, hardly any industries are not operating internationally or at least affected by economic globalization in the form of foreign competitors in domestic markets. We take on these developments, both industry- and topic-oriented. The focus is on the internationalization of offline and online retailers, which poses new challenges for retailers and consumer goods manufacturers, both in the now more competitive home markets and in their activities in new sales markets. Here we look at internationalization strategies, market entry strategies, market development, timing or expansion rhythms of offline and e-commerce retailers’ foreign activities. Mostly, we focus on success drivers of companies (at a corporate or foreign market level), as well as on the customers' perspective in foreign markets. Methodologically, this is analyzed in quantitative studies in so-called "Cross-classified Multi-Level Modelling".

Another area of International Management includes dynamic internationalization processes, which reflect the development of manufacturing corporations abroad over time, both regarding coordination (strategy, structures, systems, and culture) and determinants of this development. This topic was primarily associated with medium-sized corporations in previous publications. Similarly, characteristics of Born Globals, switches in "Operation Modes" or the reduction of internationalization have been empirically investigated as part of the divestment of foreign activities. More recently, we have been researching this for offline and e-commerce companies. Similarly, the chair dealt with organizational structures, processes and the culture of international companies, in coordination with international strategy and competitive strategy.

Doctorates and Publications

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According our goals, we decided in 2005 to divide all scientific dissertations into three paper projects and to discuss them at international conferences, to attain not only a global presence but also to achieve a continuous improvement process for each paper. Every year, we present papers at leading conferences in the field of Marketing (AMA, EMAC) and International Business (AIB, EIBA). To create a doctoral thesis at the Chair, you can find more information at Doctorate. A publication of the respective projects in good, leading journals should ensure their visibility in the international research community and ideally stands at the end of a successful scientific project.