Tracks and track chairs

Knowledge Management

Knowledge economy is increasing its contribution to the GDP of most countries in an accelerated rhythm and enlarges rapidly towards emergent economies. In this context, knowledge becomes a strategic resource, and managing knowledge becomes a driving force of achieving a competitive advantage. As the societies, companies, institutions and individuals embrace the technological advancements specific to the Industrial Revolution 4.0, particular challenges and development opportunities emerge. Thus, a focus on the process of digital transformation and its connection to how knowledge is created, stored, used, transferred and enhanced becomes necessary.  

Suggested topics for the authors who would like to join this track include, but are not limited to: knowledge of the strategic resource, knowledge management for sustainability, knowledge strategies, intellectual capital, digital transformation for a sustainable future, preparing for the Metaverse.

Business Ethics and CSR

Different opinions on business ethics and CSR circulate today. Some argue that being ethical goes hand in hand with business responsibility. Others believe morals are a costly choice in the business environment, and label CSR initiatives as marketing stunts. The aim of this track is to encourage discussions about company’s behavior in a dynamic and complex environment, where stakeholders are the cornerstone. 
The track covers issues related to Corporate Social Responsibility in the business environment, guidelines for companies’ accountability and reporting, social entrepreneurship, regulatory environment and policies, social media and ethical concerns, growing a sustainability-oriented culture, ESG and corporate strategy, greenwashing and other unethical practices in the business environment.

Business Models for the Future: Circular Economy, Social Economy, & Collaborative Economy

Circular Economy, Social Economy, and Collaborative (Sharing) Economy initiatives have become an important part of the EU’s socio-economic landscape, bringing innovative business models that respond to today’s biggest common challenges and contribute to social and economic well-being. Papers presented may cover the following topics, but they are not limited to them:
· Business models for a more circular economy – circular supply models, resource recovery models, product life extension models, sharing models, product service system models & other models
· Exploring social economy business models – Work Integration Social Enterprises, cooperatives & other models
· Social economy business models and the green transition – citizen energy cooperatives, renewable energy communities, ecological agriculture cooperatives & other models
· Social economy business models pioneering circular economy – re-use, repair, and recycling models
· Digitalization and the collaborative (sharing) economy – collaborative economy platforms & platform cooperatives
· Business model innovation in enterprises; best practices and case studies of circular, social economy or collaborative enterprises in innovative sectors inspiring future entrepreneurs

Economics

The world economy continues to suffer in 2023 from a series of destabilizing shocks, including the most recent pandemic, the invasion of the Russian Federation in Ukraine, the consequent geopolitical shifts, and the effects they have on inflation, on supply chains, on commodity and energy markets, leading to soaring prices, fears concerning food insecurity and poverty, especially in emerging and developing countries. 
This track aims at encouraging debates on the post-Covid international economics dynamics and policy response, making reference, among other issues, to trade models and policies, foreign direct investments, economic growth, government debt, inflation, stagflation, and long-term global, regional, and local impacts of the recent events.

Linking employee resilience with organizational resilience

Challenges facing organisations and their employees are constantly increasing and acquiring new shapes. In the VUCA era of volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguousness, crises in the forms of “black swans” (small probability but high impact events) or “grey rhinos” (large probability and high impact events) have become regular events with potential to create heavy losses (Chen et al., 2021). Given the turbulent times, organisational survival and effectiveness as well as employee well-being at work depend on the ability of organisations and employees to withstand and adapt to significant challenges, that is, on their resilience (Näswall et al., 2019). Resilience is commonly defined as “the ability to become strong, healthy, or successful again after something bad happens” (Merriam-Webster, 2015).
 
Employee resilience captures the extent to which employees successfully deal with different changes and setbacks at work, to which they adapt accordingly to thrive in a new environment (Näswall et al., 2015; Britt et al., 2016; Caniëls and Hatak, 2022; Fischer et al, 2022). More resilient employees are able to respond to the changing demands, tend to be more open to new experiences, and are emotionally capable of managing adversity (Branicki et al., 2016). Resilience is a positive internal resource (Liang and Cao, 2021) or the degree to which employees are able to maintain well-being (Scheibe et al., 2022).
 
Organizational resilience refers to the ability of an organisation to increase its awareness of the risk environment and reduce its vulnerability, to constantly understand and adapt to changes, to reformulate business strategies in the face of changes, and finally to proactively react before changes are needed (Liang and Cao, 2021).
 
Employee resilience and organisational resilience are interconnected leading to human and business sustainability. The mini-track welcomes presentations focusing on, but not limited to the following themes:
–        conceptualisation of employee resilience
–        conceptualisation of organisational resilience
–        antecedents of employee resilience and organisational resilience
–        outcomes of employee resilience and organisational resilience
–        link between employee resilience and well-being
–        link between employee resilience and organisational resilience
–        employee resilience and organisational resilience in VUCA era
 

Finance and Banking

Following the Covid-19 crisis, analysts signal the potential for elevated inflation and higher interest rates, corporate solvency issues, market fragility and asset bubbles, as well as increased climate-related risks. These concerns come in addition to the sector of finance and banking undergoing accelerated digital transformations, and allowing for the digital assets (cryptoassets, stablecoins, and central bank digital currencies) to take momentum.
This track welcomes works on topics covering the recent developments in the field of finance and banking, tackling but not limited to the following: green finance issues, bank investments, de-risking investments in sustainable infrastructures, fintech challenges, decentralized finance, block-chain based solutions, operational risks, reputational risks. Comparative approaches and in-depth analyses are sought after.


Innovation and sustainability in the digital era

The digital era highlights industrial advances, changes in the labour market, and in the educational system. In order to drive engagement and increase efficiency, companies need to optimize their operating models and digitize internal processes, to support digital interaction with customers and partners, to increase agility, and to improve the quality of infrastructure. In order to respond to the ever-changing landscape of digital business, it is imperative to establish a robust digital framework. This entails digitizing sustainable products and business processes while simultaneously investing in digital business initiatives. By doing so, organizations can unlock new market opportunities and significantly enhance overall performance.
 
Innovation comes forward as a prerequisite for business relevance and for sustainability, as it is connected to the ability to create sustainable relationships, and leverage opportunities. More often, companies that manage to secure their market share and increase their profitability are innovative. Innovation includes:
1) product innovation: changes in the things (products/services) that an organization offers; 2) process innovation: changes in the ways in which product/ service are created and delivered, and 3) position innovation: changes in the context in which the products/services are introduced.

This track welcomes papers that explore connections between innovation and sustainability, in the context of business digitization.
 

Management and Leadership

Novel business models take momentum in the post-Covid times, and digitalization unfolds at an accelerated pace, leading to deep transformations in many industries and regions. Embracing a more thoughtful approach to doing business, and a focus on sustainability are visible and even enforced via regulation. These changes couple with the shifts regarding the balance of power between employers and employees, and with the new dynamics visible in the work arrangements. The imperative of health management measures, the emergence of hybrid working schedules, and the desire for flexibility that more and more people announce impact workers and the management practice on various levels, including performance measurement. Discussions concerning the evolving management practices and leadership challenges are, consequently, needed and welcome.
Authors are invited to present their original works on topics related to change management, conflict management, combating burnout, hybrid or remote work, future of work, stakeholder engagement, sustainable business models, and changes in the management practice.

Marketing

Since the 1980s a new research stream started to emerge in the field of marketing, focusing on the business’ response to the green consumer movement: the green marketing, the ecological marketing, or the environmental marketing. This subdomain of marketing is widely perceived as a kind of sustainable marketing, or as marketing for sustainability, which makes it a neighbouring research field to social marketing and CSR. The most recent technological developments, such as the ones related to the adoption of digital tools, or to using novel delivery instruments, such as drones, together with the changing consumer expectations and habits, have given momentum to the studies in the field. The post-Covid market dynamics, the increased ecological awareness, coupled with energy prices skyrocketing, with the delivery chain shortages, with prices going up, and with the need to focus on building relevant consumer experience impact the current marketing practices.
The track welcomes papers that tackle the theory and practice of marketing in the current times, with a special interest in novel research concerning green/ ecological/ environmental marketing, economic issues related to green marketing, green marketing as a tool of sustainability, sustainable marketing/ marketing for sustainability, values-led marketing strategies, communicating Sustainability, innovation in marketing, embracing a direct-to-consumer mindset, fast response to market demand, empowering consumers, and customer experience strategies.
Tudor Edu

Marketing and Business Models in the Healthcare Industry

The healthcare industry is constantly evolving, driven by advancements in technology, shifting consumer expectations, and evolving regulatory frameworks. In this dynamic landscape, marketing strategies and business models play a pivotal role in shaping the future of healthcare. The track on “Marketing and Business Models in the Healthcare Industry” aims to provide a platform for scholars, researchers, industry experts, and practitioners to delve into the intricate relationship between marketing strategies, business models, and the healthcare sector.

This track invites participants to explore the latest advancements, challenges, and opportunities in healthcare marketing and business models. By examining these crucial aspects, we aim to gain valuable insights into how innovation and transformation can be achieved in healthcare practices and systems.
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Towards Sustainable and Digital Organizations and Communities

Public administration and private organizations are now facing the imperative of becoming (more) sustainable. This translates as an opportunity to innovate, to redesign strategies and structures, to redefine behaviours and actions in order to act ethically and reach targets while thinking about the impact the society and the environment.
This track welcomes papers investigating the development of public organizations, considering public value creation and human resource management, financial, economic and social performances of public and private organizations, sustainability and accountability of organizations, co-production of public service and public value co-creation, public services sustainability, innovation, cities and communities, public sector management reform, sustainable and responsible entrepreneurship, organizational and strategic change within public administration, the role of the public servants, the use of technologies of information and communication, citizens’ involvement and participation in managing res publica, public policies for sustaining growth and economic development, law, ethics and public administration, public policies for the sustainable development of the society.