Automotive, banking, healthcare, governments – How digital platforms shape our future

Thesis (BA/MA)

Betreuer: Dr. Maximilian Schreieck (


Digital platforms find their way into more and more domains of our lives. From mobile phones, to payment, to ride-sharing digital platforms have disrupted markets. The six most valued companies in 2018 are based on digital platforms1: Apple, Amazon, Alphabet, Microsoft, Facebook, and Alibaba all have created large ecosystems of partners that operate on their platforms and co-create value with the platform owner.

Up to now, most successful digital platforms focus on internet-based business models and are based in the U.S. or China. However, traditional industries in Germany such as automotive manufacturing2, banking3, healthcare, and others have understood the potential of digital platforms for their businesses. For example, a group of manufacturers including market leaders such as Zeiss and Dürr have created the joint venture ADAMOS that develops a platform for the industrial Internet of things. MAN has created RIO, a cloud platform that connects all players in the logistics industry to create more efficient transportation processes around the globe. Similarly, governments leverage digital platforms to provide services for their citizens. For example, the project Integreat provides an information platform for refugees in German municipalities4.

By leveraging technologies such as cloud computing, machine learning, or blockchain, traditional companies and governments can unlock the power of platform ecosystems. But creating flourishing platform ecosystems proves difficult for traditional companies given their existing products, processes, partner networks and IT landscape. Only with the right strategy, digital platforms reach critical mass and continue to scale. The aim of this thesis is therefore to better understand how digital platforms help traditional companies and governments to master digital transformation and how companies can successfully implement digital platforms. To do so, the effect of introducing digital platforms on the performance of traditional companies will be studied with quantitative methods such as event studies. The required data will be made available.


[2] Weiß Niklas; Schreieck, Maximilian; Brand, Laura Sophie; Wiesche, Manuel; Krcmar, Helmut: Digitale Plattformen in der Automobilbranche – Herausforderungen und Handlungsempfehlungen. HMD Praxis der Wirtschaftsinformatik, 2018

[3] Schreieck, Maximilian; Wiesche, Manuel: How Established Companies Leverage IT Platforms for Value Co-Creation – Insights from Banking. Twenty-Fifth European Conference on Information Systems (ECIS), 2017, Guimarães, Portugal

[4] Schreieck, Maximilian; Wiesche, Manuel; Krcmar, Helmut: Governing nonprofit platform ecosystems – an information platform for refugees. Information Technology for Development 23 (3), 2017, 618-643


  • Identify an industry in which traditional companies implement digital platforms
  • Pre-process financial data and event data such as press releases
  • Conduct statistical analyses (event study, regression)
  • Discuss the findings in view of current information systems literature on digital platforms


  • High degree of autonomy and individual responsibility
  • Interest and first experience in the fields of digital platforms and IT-enabled business models
  • Expertise in quantitative research and very good grades are beneficial

Further Information

The thesis can be written in English or German. The topic can also be adapted to your interests. If you have further questions, please do not hesitate to contact me directly ( Please send your application including our application form, a current transcript of records, and your CV to Please note that we can only consider applications with complete documents.