Doctoral seminar on Business Relationships and Networks

Course Description:Business markets are constituted by networks of companies related to each other in complex patterns. These patterns and the types of networks they represent are crucial for business exchange and innovation. Networks have been found essential for instance for the emergence of new business or even new business fields, for the efficient organization of global production, and for the development of new products and innovations.In business networks various types of actors interact with each other, engaging in business and innovation activities, and exchanging knowledge and other resources. Actors may be companies or other organizations (e.g. public sector organizations, associations, NGOs) but ultimately these actors are always represented by individual people, which makes business networks socially and culturally embedded, and thereby dependent on social networks (e.g. quanxi or blatt). Business relationships and networks are also temporally embedded, meaning their development is dependent on past interactions (e.g. contracts and technological bonds), yet always oriented towards future opportunities.

Learning outcomes: This course offers a unique opportunity for PhD students to deepen their knowledge of business relationships and networks, their importance, development and management. Students examine the fundamentals of business network theory, current research themes in the field and the methods popular in business network studies.After completing the course, the students should be able to identify interesting research questions related to current research themes, and to design studies seeking answers to these questions. The course will give students an opportunity to develop their existing research projects through various types of course work and intensive interaction with instructors and other students. As a cooperative effort by EIASM and KATAJA the course will provide an excellent opportunity for personal networking.

Methods of teaching and learning: Intensive seminar including lectures, group work and different types of class-room interaction. A package of readings will be prepared specifically for the course and must be read in advance. As a final assignment each doctoral candidate will write a course paper showing how she/he will apply course materials and learnings in one’s own research

Target group:The course is targeted for doctoral students interested in doing research on business networks, and majoring for instance in marketing, international business, management, technology management, supply chain management or strategy. The maximum number of participants is 25. If more apply, the selection is based on the course’s relevance to the applicant’s thesis topic and previous studies

Time:19.05. – 23.05.2014

Place: Turku School of Economics, Turku, Finland

Course Language: English

ECTS: 6 Credits

Number of students: 20 – 25

Course work and evaluation: Full attendance is required to obtain the certificate. 6 ECTS will be assigned upon completion of the seminar.
There will be no formal exam. The students will be graded by the faculty based on:

  1. Course paper 70%
  2. Readings-based      group work and presentations 30%

Required readings: To be announced


Professor Aino Halinen, Turku School of Economics, University of Turku, Finland (Programme Coordinator & Faculty)
Professor Enrico Baraldi, University of Uppsala, Sweden
Associate Professor Debbie Harrison, BI, Oslo, Norway
Professor Kristian Möller, Aalto University School of Business, Finland
Professor Asta Salmi, Aalto University School of Business, Finland

Course Coordinator and contact person: Prof. Aino Halinen (

Application deadline: 14.03.2014

Interested doctoral students should register online at EIASM website ( ) and add the required documents:

• the applicant’s curriculum vitae demonstrating his/her capabilities of doing research;

• a letter of recommendation of his/her local faculty supporting the application;

• a two-page description of his/her doctoral research, indicating the general objectives.

The number of participants will be limited to create a stimulating environment. The selection among the applicants will be conducted by the Institute’s Faculty. They will review the required documents which should necessarily complement each application form.

There is a participation fee of 1100 € for the course. This fee includes participation to the seminar, the documents, Lunches, and 2 group dinners. However, as part of the collaboration between KATAJA and EIASM, the participation fee is waived from a maximum of 10 students from the KATAJA Finnish member universities (Please observe! All accepted students from a KATAJA Member University get to take the course for free). KATAJA supports these students by paying the fee with the help of a Finnish trust fund. The fee is paid by KATAJA directly to EIASM without the student having to apply for funding. Students need, however, to cover accommodation and travel costs. No additional student funding, on top of the fee, is covered by KATAJA. The students are requested to make their own hotel arrangement.
EAISM offers a limited number of scholarships of 600 € each. Scholarships are strictly limited to students coming from an EIASM Institutional Member (the Academic Council). Allocation of the scholarships is entirely at the discretion of the European Institute.

More information about the course: