Digital Transformation of Universities – Essays on the Strategic Positioning of Universities from a Business Model Perspective
This thesis investigates the complex digital transformation of universities, the universities’ business models, and the implications for the specific strategic positioning in the education market. The research objectives of this thesis are: first, to define the terms and concepts in the digital transformation context. The clarification and conceptualization, along with the identification of phenomena (e.g., collaboration, co-creation), are essential for understanding digital transformation. The second objective is to adapt the business model approach to the public enterprises’ characteristics as a step toward the business model analysis of universities. The third objective is to propose matching strategy options for the various university business model patterns. This requires a detailed analysis of the value proposition and deduction of principles for designing university business models. Five cumulative essays structure the findings of this thesis and answer the various research questions throughout the research project. This introductory essay provides an overview of the research underpinning this thesis. I present the motivation, the conceptual and theoretical foundations, and the research questions. Furthermore, I describe the research process and outline the structure of the thesis based on the five independent essays.