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Master Seminar: "Innovating for Impact" Summer Term

Instructor: Prof. Dr. José Antonio Rosa


Prof. Dr. José Antonio RosaDr. José Antonio Rosa is Professor in Marketing and John and Deborah Ganoe Faculty Fellow at Iowa State University. He is currently studying the process by which managers make decisions under radical uncertainty, along with different factors that affect patient acceptance of medically prescribed life regimens. In his career, he has studied the role of hope on poor consumer innovation and the boundaries between creativity and deviance among the poor, behaviors and decision making by low-literacy consumer, the social construction of product markets, and the role of embodied knowledge in consumer and managerial thinking. José has taught marketing management, consumer behavior, and managing for innovation courses to undergraduate, professional graduate, and doctoral students, and he has mentored doctoral students throughout his career. He holds degrees from University of Michigan, the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College, and General Motors Institute (Kettering University). In his professional career, José held management positions in marketing and operations in the automotive and financial services industries.

How can I participate?

You can apply between Monday, February 20, 2023 until Monday, April 10, 2023 at 17:00h by sending an email to containing one combined pdf file, which should include:

  1. a short letter of motivation (~half page),
  2. your up to date CV, and
  3. a current transcript of records (Notenspiegel).

Acceptance/rejection notifications will be sent to you no later than Friday, April 14, 2023 by 17:00h.

What is this course about?

This seminar focuses on management decisions under radical uncertainty – the mind mechanisms that underlie such decisions and how to best document and understand the process. Decision under radical uncertainty are those made with insufficient information, situations where the estimation of probabilities for different possible outcomes cannot be estimated. Many business decisions, and particularly those with long time horizons for outcomes from the decisions made today.

Understanding how such decisions are made, what can go wrong, and how to mitigate adverse factors is important to management science and practice. The course also introduces you to elements of historical analysis and a qualitative research methodology.

How is the seminar conducted?

  • The seminar is held in English (instructions, presentations, and final paper) with some elements (data) in German.
  • You will work in teams.
  • To most effectively provide guidance to students, the maximum number of participants is limited to 15.
  • Per examination guidelines, your attendance at the kick-off session makes your participation in the seminar binding.
  • Course credit: 6 ECTS
  • If you are interested in pursuing a master thesis at the IIM, this seminar is prerequisite. (Please also see the guidelines for Master Theses on the ISC website).
  • Examination: Presentation (15 minutes per student) and seminar paper (22,200 signs per student). Each examination part accounts for 50% of the final seminar grade.

What will I gain from this course?

The objective of this course is to provide students an opportunity to conduct a structured inquiry into a specific and relevant research question through a scientific research project. Special attention will be paid to identifying theoretical and managerial contributions in the research paper and translating between managerial questions and scientific body of knowledge, writing a scientific paper, and presenting the findings. This seminar also serves as a preparation for students who are interested in writing a master thesis on topics related to innovation management.

What is the course schedule?

The course schedule can be found in LSF

April 25 – Virtual opening session – Inductive Qualitative Research, Teams, and Decision Assignments.
May 9 – Virtual progress check session (1-page progress summary due by May 5).
May 31 – In person session: Team Report/Presentation on Decision Histories and Chronologies followed by discussion on Emotion/Affect Regulation
June 1 – In person session: Emotion/Affect Regulation and the Role of Narratives
June 13 – In person session: Conviction Narratives
June 27 – In person session: Decision History Analysis Presentations
July 17 – Final paper submission due date

Exam registration: 29.05.2023 – 23.06.2023
Cancellation of registration: 29.05.2023 - 07.07.2023

Please notice that this schedule might be adapted.
For more information please review LSF or contact contact Zuzana Schneiderova

What readings will I engage with for this seminar?

A starting list of core readings is listed below. Additional readings will be shared during the seminar.

Beach, Lee Roy. "Decision making: Linking narratives and action." Narrative Inquiry 19 no. 2 (2009): 393–414.

Brockman, Robert, Joseph Ciarrochi, Philip Parker, and Todd Kashdan. "Emotion regulation strategies in daily life: Mindfulness, cognitive reappraisal and emotion suppression." Cognitive Behaviour Therapy 46, no. 2 (2017): 91–113.

Fenton‐O’Creevy, Mark and David Tuckett. "Selecting futures: The role of conviction, narratives, ambivalence, and constructive doubt." Futures & Foresight Science 4, e111 (2021): 1–16.

Gioia, D. A., Corley, K. G., & Hamilton, A. L. (2013). "Seeking Qualitative Rigor in Inductive Research. Organizational Research Methods" 16, no. 1: 15–31.

Tuckett, David and Milena Nikolic. "The role of conviction and narrative in decision-making under radical uncertainty." Theory & Psychology 27, no. 4 (2017): 501–523.

Viswanathan, Madhubalan, José Antonio Rosa, and Julie A. Ruth, "Exchanges in marketing systems: The case of subsistence consumer-merchants in Chennai, India," Journal of Marketing 74, no. 3 (2010): 1-17.