Innovation, Strategic Change, and Growth in Family Firms:
How do Family Ownership and Management Influence Strategy and Performance during Economic Crises?

Our research project, in cooperation with the Oesterreichische Nationalbank (OeNB), aims to explore the behavior of family businesses before, during and after times of crisis and how their growth and innovation strategies differ from those of non-family businesses. Our project focuses on family businesses as the dominant organizational form, which research has shown to be more resilient to crises than non-family businesses. Studies also have shown that businesses with a strong financial structure, larger profits and higher cash holdings before crisis situations are in a more favorable position to survive difficult times. The project examines not only HOW family businesses decide and act during and after a crisis, but also WHY they do so. In our research we aim to understand the unique characteristics of family firms and the role they play in uncertain times.

The project aims to contribute to current academic research by analyzing the growth behavior of family businesses over time, considering both economically stable and unstable periods, examining innovation from different perspectives and providing empirical research on the innovation and strategic behavior of family businesses in times of crisis. We further aim to provide practical implications for owners and managers of family businesses on how to cope with crisis situations and in this way to increase the long-term survival of this organizational form.

The project was started in August 2021 and is scheduled to take 4 years until July 2025.

For more information please get in contact with our team.

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