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Sara Maradey and Natalia Kapranchik, KLU almuna, Master in Global Logistics

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Questions motivate - Respectful Inquiry study explores the theory behind the leadership technique


Categories: Faculty & Research

Bosses who ask questions have highly motivated employees. The work of Niels Van Quaquebeke from Kühne Logistics University (KLU) in Hamburg and Will Felps from the University of New South Wales (UNSW) in Australia supports this finding. And asking the right type of question is just as important as listening to the answer. The two academics coined the term Respectful Inquiry to describe the phenomenon.

Judicious Respect for Your Political Opponent






How disrespectful communication in political debate impacts election outcomes

Kick-off: Joint leadership research with Mercuri Urval



A joint research project between Prof. Dr. Niels Van Quaquebeke and his PhD candidate Jennifer Ulrich on “first time leaders” has been kicked off in cooperation with the supply chain function of the consultancy Mercuri Urval.

The research project focuses on first time transitions into leadership roles. Such transitions mark a far-reaching event in the professional biography of employees. Often for the first time, these employees become responsible for other employees, are confronted with tasks for which they had little or no professional preparation, and find themselves isolated at the helm of a pyramid with no peers readily available to talk to.

The question of the research project is what happens to those leaders, specifically what happens to their behaviors vis-à-vis others and what happens to their own psychological health. Naturally, the follow-up question is what can companies do to better assist in the transition so that consequences are beneficial to all involved.

The KLU Leadership Center of Prof. Dr. Niels Van Quaquebeke has been sponsored with 20.000 Euro by Mercuri Urval to undertake the research. In addition, while the KLU focuses on the design and analysis of the study, Mercuri Urval vitally assists by finding and contacting suitable companies for the study. Insights will be given to cooperating companies first and discussed with these in a closed practitioner circle before being published in academic outlets.

Mercuri Urval was founded 47 years ago in Sweden with the vision of helping companies finding and developing the right people so that they can deliver the best possible business results. In that time, Mercuri Urval has grown organically to become a world-leading consultancy with more than 800 consultants worldwide. Each year, its consultants work with more than 3,000 clients in over 50 countries. Commensurate with their growth, Mercuri Urval’s services have expanded to include a range of Board and Executive, Talent Management and Business Transformation solutions.

Companies that are interested in the KLU Leadership Center or the joint project with Mercuri Urval are invited to contact Prof. Dr. Niels Van Quaquebeke.

Links to

·         Prof. Dr. Niels Van Quaquebeke: https://www.the-klu.org/quaquebeke/

·         Jennifer Ulrich: https://www.the-klu.org/ulrich/

·         Mercuri Urval https://www.mercuriurval.com/de/

o    pia-isabell.schmidt@mercuriurval.com

o    michael.schafer@mercuriurval.com  

Master Degree in International Maritime Law and Logistics to be launched for the first time worldwide


Categories: KLU

The IMO International Maritime Law Institute (IMLI) in Malta will launch a Master of Science in International Maritime Law and Logistics (IMLLog) degree in October 2016 in cooperation with Kühne Logistics University (KLU) in Hamburg.

Until the accreditation process has been completed at KLU, IMLI will be the degree-granting institution. This unique program, which is being offered at the post-graduate level for the first time, is targeted to maritime professionals. In addition to a thorough understanding of logistics and maritime operations, the global economy now requires them to be familiar with the nuances and provisions of current and upcoming maritime regulations.

IMLLog program is about dealing with the challenges of moving goods and people by sea including in situations of humanitarian relief, learning about customs procedures, port organization and operations, international treaties and their effect on operations at sea, and helping organize shipping routes, taking the legal implications of human rights laws into consideration and have the answer when cargo is damaged or lost.

When asked about the importance of the program, Professor Thomas Strothotte, President of KLU stated that “This degree qualifies to master groundbreaking logistics and legal challenges related to all maritime issues”; whereas Professor Attard, Director of IMLI noted that  “It provides the students with the necessary skills for assessing the financial implications of legal decisions in logistics and to understand how this fast-paced field has become a building block of modern society”. 

The two Institutions of higher learning will co-organize the two-year, full-time Master of Science Degree program combining International Maritime Law and Maritime and Humanitarian Logistics. With this partnership program the Institutions are responding to the call of governments and representatives of industry around the world who need persons educated in international legal matters pertaining to the sea but also need to understand the complex industrial use of the sea for services and for the transportation of goods.

This intensive English language taught program is divided into two parts: international maritime law courses will be taught primarily at IMLI, and logistics and leadership courses will be taught primarily at KLU. In this regard, students will spend the first academic year studying in Malta and the second in Hamburg. The first intake will start on 1st October 2016 and finish its study on 31st July 2018.

The application process for the new degree program will start on February 1, 2016. For further information please see: www.imllog.org

IMLI was established under the auspices of the International Maritime Organization (IMO), a specialized agency of the United Nations, as an international center for the training
of specialists in maritime law. It offers a Master of Laws (LL.M.) program, a Research Degree program leading to the award of the Degrees of Master Juris (M. Jur.) and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), an Advanced Diploma program and several short courses.

Kühne Logistics University – Wissenschaftliche Hochschule für Logistik und Unternehmensführung (KLU) is an independent, state-accredited private university based in the HafenCity district of Hamburg and sponsored by the non-profit Kühne Foundation. KLU offers a Bachelor program in Management, Master programs in Management and Global Logistics & Supply Chain Management, an accompanying PhD program, an Executive MBA program, and several executive education courses.

Crash Course in Humanitarian Logistics


Categories: Faculty & Research

Streams of refugees, hunger, and natural catastrophes are challenging the world community to an unheard-of extent. Due to the 50 million people worldwide who are fleeing their homelands now, humanitarian logistics’ fields of activity is expanding. However, its main focus is still to provide assistance quickly and efficiently to any location in the world, at any time.

In October 2015, a logistics training session especially for aid organizations took place in Hamburg for the first time. With the support of Kühne Logistics University (KLU) and the Kühne Foundation, the Humanitarian Logistics Organisation (HLO) invited the representatives of eight relief organizations, including Johanniter, Malteser, Medikamentenhilfswerk, action medeor and arche nova, to a two-day training program at KLU.

“The program is targeted to non-profit organizations that send humanitarian aid from Germany and have little or no knowledge of logistics,” explained Dr. Maria Besiou, associate professor for humanitarian logistics at KLU. Besiou provided the participants with an overview of the current challenges and latest research in the field of humanitarian logistics. Experts from logistics companies explained the special features of the individual modes of transport on land, sea and in the air to them. “Our goal is to make planning and implementing future humanitarian aid shipments easier,” said Besiou. The team of experts was obviously very successful. “The training course was an excellent introductory course. It gave me insight into humanitarian logistics,” said Jan Klassen from Mission Aviation Fellowship at the end of the second course day.

The Humanitarian Logistics Organisation thanks lecturers Maria Besiou, Thorsten Busch, Thorsten Biermann and Marco Wehrle, and the Kühne Foundation for their wonderful support during the preparation and implementation of the workshop. The HLO and its partners plan to offer this training course regularly in the future. According to Besiou: “This crash course was a very promising beginning. However, the need is much greater.”

The Humanitarian Logistics Organisation (HLO) was founded in Hamburg in 2014. The non-profit organization has set itself the task of improving the logistics in the humanitarian area and supporting the non-profit sector in its efforts to implement and optimize aid activities worldwide.

Prof. Dr. Maria Besiou
Phone: +49 40 328 707…
Email: maria.besiou@the-klu.org
Web: www.the-klu.org

Humanitarian Logistics Organisation e.V.
Phone: +49 40 228 686 750
Email: info@humanilog.org
Web: www.humanilog.org

Smartphone, Tablet and Computer Returns – a Nuisance or a New Business Model for Manufacturers


Categories: Faculty & Research, KLU

“Unconditional return within 30 days,” “Money back guarantee within 60 days,” “100% refund if you’re not 100% satisfied.” At first glance, modern marketing is customer-oriented but as usual, it has one goal: making a sale. However, the more products customers return to the manufacturer, the more difficult this goal is to achieve. Dr. Çerag Pinçe, Assistant Professor of Operations and Supply Chain Management at Kühne Logistics University (KLU) in Hamburg, has an explanation for why it pays manufacturers to refurbish returned goods.

In the electronic consumer goods area, the manufacturers’ offensive marketing strategies of recent years have led to significant growth in revenues. At the same time, they have created a problem that requires a solution: more and more products are being returned. “The manufacturers seem to be drowning in their own productivity and successful sales strategy,” said Pinçe. “They urgently need a model for mastering the flood of returns and avoiding paying extra for them.” It is important to know that 60-80 percent of the returned products do not have any defects.

“Customers have the feeling that they are not taking a risk when purchasing products and can easily reverse impulsive purchase decisions. No wonder everyone is taking advantage of the manufacturers’ offers,” added Pinçe. In the US, the annual total value of consumer electronics products returns is between $15 and $18 billion – 11-20 percent of the total sales in this segment. Since the vast majority of consumer electronics products have a memory that contains personal information, the goods that customers return cannot simply be re-packaged and put back on store shelves.

“Until now, producers have tried to keep the added costs that returns generate in check by producing top quality products,” he said. After all, top quality implies a longer service life, resulting in fewer complaints and returns. But the issue has now become one of maintaining profit margins in the face of the increase in returns.

Pinçe analyzed new approaches to handling returns and found out that there are primarily three options that can lead to very different results:

Write off or recycle the products

Refurbish the products and sell them at lower prices

Refurbish the products and satisfy the warranty claims

The latter two options are the most interesting ones, since manufacturers only have extra costs when they recycle products and recycling excludes profit-oriented resale.

Refurbished products yield better margins since the cost of refurbishing is typically much lower than the cost of producing a new product. On the other hand, selling them can cannibalize the sales of new products. Refurbishing in order to satisfy warranty claims does lead to cost savings because customers do not receive new products as compensation. This way, however, manufacturers lose their business of reselling refurbished smartphones, tablets, etc.

The conventional wisdom in the academic literature is that refurbishing and selling is the way to go as long as the costs of refurbishing are economically justifiable. Pinçe, on the other hand, has found that for consumer electronics original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), refurbishing to fulfill warranty claims is actually better in the majority of the cases. This is because products that are refurbished and re-sold also generate warranty and money-back guarantee costs. Refurbishing for warranty coverage, however, absorbs these costs.

“Exactly when the OEMs put the refurbished products into the market also makes a big difference. Our analysis shows that OEMs should build up refurbished stocks at the early stages of the life cycle to prepare for warranty claims that arrive at later stages,” said Pinçe. Warranties flood in later in the life cycle and the OEMs are better prepared to respond when they have proactively refurbished and postponed refurbished product sales to later stages in the life cycle. He added: “Current practice is the exact opposite: most OEMs are probably introducing their refurbished products to the market too early. Deciding against refurbishing, whether for satisfying guarantee claims or selling new products, is never the right choice in the consumer electronics segment.”

The expert for operations and supply chain management based his numerical calculations on the following information:

Material and return costs (always borne by the manufacturer) for various smartphones and tablet computers
Refurbishing costs (according to the internal information of industry experts)

A return rate of 10-20 percent (in the US)

60-80 percent of the returned products do not have any defects

An average of under 5 percent of the cases are true guarantee cases

Professor Pinçe’s analyses are eagerly received by the professional world and the industry in particular – for example, at this year’s 9th Hi-Tech Electronics Supply Chain Summit in Amsterdam (http://events.eft.com/hitech/conference-speakers.php) and at the Hi-Tech Supply Chain Summit (http://www.vonlanthengroup.com/EVENTS/Hi-Tech-Supply-Chain-Summit/) scheduled for October 26-27 in Berlin, where Professor Pinçe will give one of the keynotes.

Contact: Professor Çerag Pinçe

KLU Greets the New 2015 Cohort


Categories: Events, KLU

A babble of voices comes from the Kühne Logistics University foyer. You mostly hear English, the language in which the students from over 30 countries communicate. Today they are making initial contact to their fellow students, the professors, and the university staff. The courses in the degree programs are also held in English. A total of 163 new students have enrolled at KLU for the BSc and MSc in Management programs, the MSc in Global Logistics & Supply Chain Management or the Executive MBA in Leadership & Logistics. Among them are over 50 exchange students from around the globe.

Almost all of them are on campus today and full of anticipation, like Juan Mendez Ospina (BSc Management) from Colombia: “The atmosphere and tension today was really great. The intercultural exchange at KLU is amazing and Hamburg is beautiful!” Or Jay Nair (MSc Global Logistics & Supply Chain Management) from India: “I’ve been really excited today. I am very grateful and privileged to study at the KLU, one of the top universities dedicated to Logistics in the world. I am really happy to meet all those warm people and great students who are always ready to help – and the infrastructure in here is also great!”

President Thomas Strothotte and Professor Rod Franklin, the dean of programs, greet the new cohort in the auditorium. The two men emphasize that the features of studying at KLU not only include being able to attend lectures and seminars at the highest academic level and a great deal of practical relevance. The cross-cultural nature of the students and faculty, which makes it easy to integrate many experience levels into the degree program, the unique learning atmosphere in small groups, and the constant, close contact to professors are what make KLU a special place to study. These aspects all leave their mark on students’ time at the university and also apply to all the KLU alumni. The academic background they received at KLU will serve them for life.

State Approval for Kühne Logistics University


Categories: KLU

Hamburg’s university landscape has just become richer – permanently. The Senate of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg granted permanent state approval to Kühne Logistics University (KLU) today. With its focus on logistics, management and leadership, KLU offers the world a unique research and teaching program.

“I am very pleased about the successful outcome of the approval process for Kühne Logistics University and congratulate everyone involved,” said the university’s founder, Dr. h.c. Klaus-Michael Kühne. KLU President Thomas Strothotte was also overjoyed: “Our philosophy is simple: quality trumps quantity. We focus on providing an excellent environment for studying and conducting research. We do not compromise in these areas – and this policy is paying off.”
In her congratulatory statement, Science Senator Katharina Fegebank emphasized the university’s positive impact on Hamburg. “My congratulations to KLU on its permanent approval. The successful German Council of Science and Humanities accreditation honors its outstanding performance in teaching and research,” she said. “Its publication activities in particular have enriched Hamburg’s university landscape.”
Previously, the German Council of Science and Humanities assessed KLU’s teaching and research performance and the resources the university applies to achieve it in detail. The results were positive and the Council accredited the university on April 24 of this year.
In 2010, the Hamburg Senate approved KLU as an academic university for a five-year probationary period. Supported jointly by the federal government and the state governments, the German Council of Science and Humanities’ mission is to create proposals for the contextual and structural development of science, research and universities. Before a state can grant an institution of higher education permanent certification, the Council must accredit it.

Digitalization Is Changing Our Lives and the Economy


Categories: Faculty & Research

Industry 4.0 is not only changing the very fabric of production and services, it is also posing completely new challenges for the IT and logistics sectors. The first Kühne Logistics University Forum attended by over 100 experts in the IT and logistics in Hamburg yesterday (July 7, 2015) reached this conclusion. The theme of the day was: “Digitalization & Logistics – Challenges of the next decade.”

In the course of their talks, Franz Hero, Senior Vice President Supply Chain & Logistics Development at SAP, and Karl-Heinz Streibich, CEO Software AG, made the high degree of digitalization in the economy and everyday life very obvious. They predict that the speed of the changes will accelerate. E2E process management, smart autonomous assets, 3D printing & virtualization, digital workflows and platforms, new kinds of human interaction and big data are the new themes that will require more and more of our attention in the coming years.

Twenty years ago, the IT industry served the economy but today IT is an integral component of all the economy’s sectors. It has become essential for production. “The paradigm shift in this area is now complete. It is posing entirely new questions and requires very different answers,” said President Thomas Strothotte of KLU, whose degree is in information sciences. “When IT drives the economy, everyone – from technician to top managers – must think in IT categories in order to understand the core economic processes. In the same manner, IT experts must acquire knowledge about the special features of the industry they work in. After all, an automotive company needs different IT solutions than a logistics service provider or a publishing company. Standard models are no longer applicable.”

The key issue for today’s companies is whether to outsource the software expertise or become digital companies in their own right. In-house software competency increases a company’s competitive ability and ensures that the company remains independent.

In his talk, “Digital Transformation – Shaping the logistics of the next decade,” Dr. André Ludwig, Associate Professor of Computer Science in Logistics at KLU, made this point impressively, using the logistics sector as an example. And Dr. Kai Hoberg, Associate Professor of Supply Chain and Operations Strategy, made a presentation entitled “Beyond the Hype of 3D Printing – How to unlock the value of additive manufacturing” that contained surprising analyses and cross references.

Another key conclusion of the first Kühne Logistics University Forum impacts an entirely different field. “This profound shift must also be reflected in our university education. The competition will also decide who has the specialized employees with the best education,” said Strothotte. “Digitalization is not only driving the logistics and IT sectors. It is also driving us. This is why we are in the process of creating a new master’s program in IT & logistics.”

FIBAA Premium Seal for KLU


Categories: KLU

Accrediting degree programs is a lot of work and there are no fireworks involved. Nevertheless, the management and faculty of Kühne Logistics University in Hamburg received the FIBAA Accreditation Commission’s announcement with great pleasure. Both of KLU’s master’s degree programs – Management and Global Logistics & Supply Chain Management – have earned the FIBAA Premium Seal.

“Accreditation procedures assure the university’s teaching quality. This is why they are very important. They benefit the students and the teachers to the same extent,” said Dr. Helga Beste, the acting head of programs. “But receiving a seal of quality like this one is very special. We are extremely happy.” She and her team compiled the documents for the accreditation procedure and answered all of the commission’s questions during the procedure, which takes months. “Since we only have two master’s programs, this top honor is also a quality seal for the entire university,” added Beste.

KLU’s president, Professor Thomas Strothotte, also expressed his pleasure: “Our standards for research and teaching are extremely high. It pays to consistently meet them. Top results for KLU in the latest Handelsblatt research rankings and in the CHE university rankings are the proof. I am thrilled that our master’s programs have received the FIBAA Premium Seal – it confirms that the path we are taking is the right one.”

How One Doctoral Advisor Guides his Candidates to Success


Categories: Faculty & Research

Dr. Sönke Albers, professor of marketing and innovation at Kühne Logistics University in Hamburg, is a doctoral advisor who provides the candidates he supports with more than supervision for their dissertations. He guides them to success. Chrtistine Köhler, his doctoral candidate, won this year’s Faculty Award for the Best Dissertation from the Business Administration and Social Sciences department at the renowned University of Kiel. The title of her work is “Essays on the Management-oriented Analysis and Assessment of Carryover Models.” Last year, another one of his PhD candidates, Thomas Fandrich from Kühne Logistics University, received the coveted award.

There is a method behind their success. “To me, rigorous, relevant research is the basis of every individual scientific achievement. It also determines the importance of the individual scientific institutions in the academic world,” said Albers, who is also the dean of research at Kühne Logistics University. “It begins with the choice of topic. It is relatively easy to find an impressive theme to write a doctoral dissertation on. A topic that is really at the focus of academic activity and delivers an important contribution to the current academic discussion requires more. The trick is to actively and consciously involve young scientists in your own research, give them responsibility and space in which they can try things out, motivate them and be a consistent point of contact.”

Albers has little sympathy for university teachers who pride themselves on the high number of doctoral candidates they supervise. “The quantity is not important – it’s the quality alone that counts,” said Albers. “And quality is not a bulk commodity.” He picks his doctoral candidates very carefully and demands a lot from them. But he is there for them whenever they need his advice and support.

His methods pay for KLU: the prestigious Handelsblatt research rankings place the “scientific university for logistics and management” founded in 2010 among the top universities for research performance in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland.

Fabian Berger Is the New KLU Head of Administration


Categories: KLU

Kühne Logistics University (KLU) in Hamburg has appointed a new chancellor: Fabian Berger. On January 1 of this year, he became the managing director of KLU’s contracting body.

“I am very happy to have been entrusted with this highly responsible task,” said Berger. President Thomas Strothotte, who has been the acting head of administration since 2013, commented: “All of the university’s leadership functions are now being carried out by outstanding people. Our institutional structure has now achieved a new quality and we are superbly equipped for the tasks of the future.”
Since KLU was established in 2010, Berger has performed many key management functions, sharing in KLU’s extremely successful development. “The last five years have been an exciting period of ongoing institutional growth and breathtaking developments, in terms of both teaching and research, said Berger.
With its excellent rating in the latest CHE university rankings and the Handelsblatt research rankings, KLU has affirmed its top place among the business schools and university business administration departments in Germany, Austria and the German-speaking region of Switzerland.

Honorary VHB Membership for Professor Sönke Albers


Categories: Faculty & Research, Events, KLU

The German Academic Association for Business Research (VHB) has awarded Professor Sönke Albers, the dean of research at Kühne Logistics University, one of its rare honorary memberships. “I am quite pleased to have received this very special honor,” said Albers. The association announced the award at this year’sconference, which it held from May 27-29 in Vienna.

Almost all of the 2,200 university teachers in Germany, Austria and the German-language region of Switzerland belong to the VHB. The association has granted Albers this honor for proven academic excellence and merit for his contribution to the association’s development.
A member of the VHB since 1982, Albers has held various high-ranking functions in the association. He was a member of the VHB advisory board, chairman of the Marketing Commission, editor-in-chief of the association’s academic newspaper “Business Research,” and the association’s chairman from 2007-2008.

KLU receives 5-Year German Council of Science and Humanities Accreditation


Categories: Faculty & Research, KLU

April 28, 2015 marks a milestone in the history of KLU. After an extensive auditing process, the German Council of Science and Humanities has accredited Kühne Logistics University – Wissenschaftliche Hochschule für Logistik und Unternehmensführung for five years.

KLU founder Klaus-Michael Kühne is extremely satisfied: “My vision has turned into reality very quickly here. KLU is a unique center of excellence for research and teaching in the areas of supply chain management, global logistics and management. It is the proud flagship of my foundation’s logistics-related activities – there is no other university like it in the world.”

“We were happy that they examined us so thoroughly,” said Dr. Thomas Strothotte, president of KLU. “After all, we find our concept 100% convincing and can look back at a success story that spans almost the entire five years since our founding in 2010.”

The German Council of Science and Humanities audited KLU’s guiding principles, profile and strategic planning for 2014. It paid close attention to the university’s management structure, organization and administration, research, and teaching. The services for students, continuing education programs, equipment and financing were also put to the test. KLU’s self-assessment was 92 pages long, with an appendix of 3,096 pages. The audit climaxed in a 2-day session on the KLU campus in October 2014, during which a delegation from the council conducted extensive talks with all of the university’s internal and external stakeholders.

The results of the two most important university-related rankings in Germany, Austria and Switzerland – the Handelsblatt research rankings and the CHE university rankings – were published in November and December 2014, and KLU was among the top-ranking universities in both. “This impressively highlights the extremely successful trend in research, teaching and university organization we have established in only a few years,” commented Dr. h.c. Sönke Albers, KLU’s dean of research.

The German Council of Science and Humanities accreditation and the outstanding ranking results represent an excellent, secure foundation for KLU’s further development. “This is confirmation and an incentive at the same time,” said President Strothotte. “Our next goal is to achieve the right to award doctorates.” He also would like to expand the number of professors and the university’s partnerships with business.

KLU Kicks Off its First European Commission Project


Categories: Faculty & Research

KLU was awarded with its first tender for the study on differentiated port infrastructure charges to promote environmentally friendly maritime transport activities and sustainable transportation.

“It was a close call in the competition against other consortia and I am very happy that we got the project,” said KLU professor Michele Acciaro, who will head the project at KLU. “This study is a great opportunity to work with top experts from the UK, Italy, Portugal and Belgium on this topic. I am convinced that it has a lot of research potential and is likely to make a difference in the future of European seaports.”

The other consortium members are the Italian consulting firm COGEA, the Free University of Brussels and the Portuguese IT provider GLINT. The project for the European Commission Directorate General on Mobility and Transport (DG MOVE) study on green charging practices for seaports will last one year.

It will involve collecting and structuring information on greenhouse gas and noise emissions and pollution from European seaports, and investigate how ports around the globe have developed differentiated charging schemes to promote greener shipping practices.

The results will contribute to the EU’s future port policy and represents an important step in establishing KLU as a center of excellence in research and education involving maritime logistics and sustainable transport.

Kühne Logistics University ranks no. 3 in research among all business schools and universities in Germany


Categories: Faculty & Research, KLU

Once again, this year’s Handelsblatt ranking of business schools and universities has put Kühne Logistics University (KLU) in Hamburg at the top. Kühne Logistics University ranks no. 3 in research output per professor among all universities in Germany and has the highest research output of all private business schools in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

“Although we are only in the fourth year of our existence as a research university, we have established ourselves among the elite. We are all very proud of this huge success,” said KLU president Professor Thomas Strothotte. “Our focus on top conditions for research and on outstanding academic personalities continues to pay off.”
The dean of research at KLU, Professor Sönke Albers, is also extremely happy with the 2014 ranking. The marketing expert himself is one of the top researching academics with a rank of 12 in the category lifelong achievement. “Research is our key mission,” said Albers. “It is a basic prerequisite for first-class teaching and top contacts in the business world.” Because KLU is generously funded by the Kühne Foundation, the private university is able to provide its academics with an excellent research environment.

The Handelsblatt ranking looks at all business administration faculties in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland and evaluates more than 2.600 researchers at about 100 universities. First published in 2009, this is the region’s most prestigious ranking in the field of business administration.
Overview on KLU ranking results:

  • KLU ranks no.1 in research output per professor among all private business schools in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland

  • KLU ranks no. 3 in research performance of all German universities

  • KLU ranks no. 5 in research among all universities in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland

  • Dr. h. c. Sönke Albers, professor of marketing and innovation, ranks no. 12 (of 2600) in the Lifelong Achievement category

  • Dr. ManMohan Sodhi, professor of logistics and supply chain management, ranks no. 68 (of 2600) in the Lifelong Achievement category

  • Alan McKinnon, professor of logistics and head of the KLU Logistics department, ranks no. 78 (of 2600) in the Lifelong Achievement category

  • Dr. Niels Van Quaquebeke, professor of leadership and organizational behavior, ranks no. 70 in the Top 100 Researchers Under 40 category

  • Based on its attractive research conditions, KLU has established itself among the top universities in Germany. The same applies to its studying conditions for KLU students. In the most recent CHE ranking of master’s programs in business administration (December 2014), KLU students rated all five categories with the highest possible grade of “very good” (the overall student experience, the curriculum, the learning environment, teaching, and its international orientation).

    Kühne Logistics University Top in CHE Ranking Criteria


    Categories: KLU

    Kühne Logistics University (KLU) achieved a top rating in the five most important criteria CHE Center for Higher Education examined in its current master’s student rankings for business administration.KLU students gave the overall learning environment, academic program, supervision, and international orientation the top rating of very good. They gave the same rating to the degree program’s relevance toacademics and practice, the library, and the building and facilities.

    “Our philosophy is simple: quality trumps quantity. We focus on providing an excellent environment for studying and conducting research. We make no compromises in these areas – and this policy obviously pays off. I’m very happy about these results,” said KLU president Dr. Thomas Strothotte, referring to the latest CHE Ranking.

    Based on its attractive learning conditions, KLU has acquired a fixed place among the top universities in Germany only four years after its establishment. The same applies to research: KLU ranks seventh in the rated research output per professor of all business administration faculties in Germany, Austria and Switzerland (see Handelsblatt Ranking 2012).

    The Experts at Your Side – How multinational teams can boost company creativity


    Categories: Faculty & Research

    Companies and all modern organizations need their employees’ ideas in order to develop further. But are new ideas even put on the table when the employees who have them are only at the company for a short time and quite possibly come from a different culture? In this case, are the reasons to keep silent more compelling than the impulse to go out on a limb and express innovative ideas? A study conducted at Kühne Logistics University (KLU) in Hamburg shows that two conditions enhance companies’ ability to tap the potential of employees like these:

    1. Managers must be open for new ideas and create an atmosphere in which having/expressing ideas is considered good business etiquette.
    2. Companies in the global market have a major advantage when they embrace multinationality and the company’s managers come from a variety of cultures.

    Employees are not only there to carry out tasks – they are experts who have special knowledge that is important for their organization. “The employees who have been seconded to a subsidiary of their multinational corporation for a limited stay, for example, are often outstanding sources of innovative ideas. ‘On the outside looking in,’ they have no established routines but come with specific know-how and different cultural backgrounds,” said Christian Tröster, professor for leadership and organizational behavior at KLU. “Unfortunately for companies our research shows that this creative potential often lies fallow because employees are reluctant to speak up with ideas for how to improve the organization.”

    With colleague Daan van Knippenberg from the Rotterdam School of Management, he studied a company with locations in different countries and mostly local employees. Although all of the locations were successful with regard to their local activities, the company lacked a globally interconnected strategy. To tackle this problem, the company decided to activate the knowledge exchange among employees from different locations and countries. To achieve this goal, the company seconded employees from one location to a different one for up to three years. The temporary transfers, so called expatriates, were asked to use their knowledge to develop ideas for improving the processes at their new locations.

    Interviews with over 250 of the company’s managers confirmed that the temporary transfers added value to their new locations. Above all, they indicated that the ideas they had would be useful for improving the company. Paradoxically, these employees preferred to keep their ideas to themselves. There were two main reasons for this: on the one hand, they felt less loyal to their new location and therefore, less motivated to advocate change for it. On the other, every new idea for changing the status quo is implicit criticism, i.e. the company could have done things better right from the beginning. “This means that employees who communicate new ideas are suspected of making unnecessary waves, and temporary transfers are the last people who want to be accused of making waves,” said Tröster.

    Social psychology explains the phenomenon: similarities between people are always attractive, because they see themselves in the other and develop positive expectations of any mutual interaction (e.g. “Birds of a feather flock together.”). Seconded employees are often different from most of their colleagues – in both appearance and culture. This is why they may place less trust in the colleagues at their new location and feel less of a connection to them.

    Situations like these required a high degree of sensitivity and challenge managers in a very special way. When managers are generally perceived as being open for new ideas, the probability that employees – especially temporary transfers – communicate their ideas for improving the company to them increases. “To achieve this ideal situation, companies must develop a culture of learning and actively support this culture. They must communicate the reasons for implementing or not implementing new ideas clearly,” explained Tröster. In some cultures, it is considered terribly impolite to criticize the boss. “Western-oriented managers must try to overcome the employees from these cultures’ reluctance to criticize. But many bosses simply don’t know how.”

    The study also shows that temporary transfers in particular feel more secure when their bosses come from the same cultural and national background as they do. “Companies are on the right track when they provide their international personnel with the same opportunities to obtain management positions,” said Tröster. “Companies who create a climate of innovation and consciously shape and live internationality have clear competitive advantages because they are able to mobilize additional creative potential.”

    For more information on the subject, see: Tröster, Christian & Daan van Knippenberg. “Leader openness, nationality dissimilarity, and voice in multinational teams.” In Journal of International Business Studies, (43(6), 2012): 591-613.

    Academic Accolade for Research Project at Kühne Logistics University


    Categories: Faculty & Research, KLU

    A research network from Kühne Logistics University (KLU) and Universities of Hamburg, Cologne, and Münster has just achieved something remarkable. It is the first group of business administration researchers in more than 10 years to receive German Research Foundation (DFG) funding. “Of course we are proud of this,” said Prof. Sönke Albers. Together with Prof. Christian Barrot, both from Kühne Logistics University (KLU) in Hamburg, Albers is responsible for two of the six sub-projects. The title of the project: Marketing hedonic media products in the context of digital social media. The project’s total funding volume is approx. €1.5 million for a period of three years (2015-2017), which can be extended by an additional three years.

    The foundation has rarely funded business-administration-related themes in the past – of the 189 groups of researchers from all academic fields that DFG is currently supporting, only three are in the field of business administration. “This extraordinary funding opportunity can be likened to an academic accolade for our department of Management and Economics,” said KLU President Dr. Thomas Strothotte. And Professor Klaus-Michael Kühne, whose foundation finances the university, commented: “I fully acknowledge this highly respectable achievement.”

    The digital social networks are having more and more of an impact on consumer behavior. Information can be spread much more quickly via Facebook, Twitter and YouTube and it reaches significantly broader target groups. Companies are using these networks to practice brand communication that influences purchasing behavior at least as actively as classical advertising does. As a result, the power of consumers is growing in an undreamt of manner. The so-called hedonic media products – books, films, music and games – are particularly affected.

    “We are interested in the influence that social media exerts on the marketing of hedonic media products with short life cycles,” explained Albers, who is also Dean of Research at KLU. “In another sub-project, we plan to examine how the social networks can be used for systematic marketing communication,” added Christian Barrot, Assistant Professor of Marketing and Innovation at the private logistics and management university.
    In addition to the funding applicants, the project involves many international research partners (international fellows) from major universities including Columbia Business School, Penn State University, and Cornell University in the U.S.A., IDC Herzliya (Israel), and London Business School.

    Harbour Front Literaturfestival geht in die Verlängerung


    Categories: Events, KLU

    Das Harbour Front Literaturfestival Hamburg ist allen Literaturfreunden ein Begriff und steht für das Literaturereignis der Stadt im September. Nun sind Lesungen über die Festivalzeit hinaus in der Planung.

    Das neue Format heißt HafenCity Salon. Die Kühne Logistics University (KLU), an der während des Literaturfestivals fast täglich Lesungen stattfinden, wird auch für den HafenCity Salon Veranstaltungsort sein. Harbour Front Literaturfestival-Zeit ist künftig also von Januar bis Dezember.

    Gast des 1.HafenCity Salons am 8. November 2014 ist Don Winslow, „der Meister des coolen, harten Thrillers“ (James Ellroy). „Winslow ist einer der ganz großen amerikanischen Krimiautoren und alle seine Bücher sind Bestseller mit Qualitätsstempel. Er ist der wichtigste amerikanische Thrillerautor der Gegenwart“, heißt es im Festivalprogramm.

    Das Harbour Front Literaturfestival Hamburg wurde am 10. September im Audimax der Kühne Logistics University von Co-Festivalleiter Nikolaus Hansen eröffnet. Zur Eröffnung sprachen Klaus-Michael Kühne, dessen Stiftung Hauptförderer des Festivals ist und Hamburgs Kultursenatorin Barbara Kisseler. Zu diesem herausragenden gesellschaftlichen Ereignis Hamburgs waren etwa 300 Gäste aus Politik, Wirtschaft, Wissenschaft und Kultur gekommen, unter ihnen auch Altkanzler Helmut Schmidt. Hellmuth Karasek war der erste literarische Gast dieses 6. Harbour Front Festivals, 100 weitere folgten ihm.

    Don Winslow ist am 08.11.2014 mit seinem neuen Thriller Missing New York im Audimax der Kühne Logistics University zu Gast. Beginn ist 20.00 Uhr. Karten zum Preis von 15,-€ gibt es an den bekannten Vorverkaufsstellen, an der Abendkasse oder unter www.harbourfront-hamburg.com.

    Less Air in Packages: KLU student boosts fill level for Tchibo online shipping by 20 percent


    Categories: Faculty & Research, KLU

    Online customers are familiar with this situation: you are happy to receive your package but have to wonder about its (often large) dimensions. You open it – only to see that most of what is in the box is air. Victoria Herzog, a student at Kühne Logistics University in Hamburg, took on the topic of the optimal size of mail order packaging for her master’s thesis.* She demonstrates how the average fill level can be boosted by over 20 percent. In collaboration with Tchibo GmbH, she applied the data from 200,000 orders to a model for calculating the package size that Tchibo should use for its online shipping in order to improve the overall fill level. Her results could be significant for the entire industry. For her master’s thesis, Herzog received the Best Thesis Award 2014 from KLU.

    The company wanted to optimize the utilization of packaging contents because a higher fill level results in a number of benefits. The smaller the package, the less material the box requires. The logistics costs also drop and since the total volume to be transported is reduced, the company’s carbon footprint becomes smaller. Another benefit: fuller packages are less likely to be damaged by other, heavier packages. “Considering the multitude of packages we ship every day, an optimized package size is a key factor. Not only for economic reasons, but from an ecological viewpoint as well,” said Marc-Stephan Heinsen, director of supply chain management & logistics at Tchibo.

    It isn’t easy to solve the problem of determining the correct packaging size, according to Herzog: “Unfortunately, you can’t adjust the size of the package to each individual order. Tchibo’s product range is too diverse and it would take to much time. Booksellers have an easier time of it.” Imagine you receive an order for a large cutting board and a pound of coffee… “We must use rectangular packaging, and regardless of how you pack the products, the package is always only half full in this case. Separating the order into two individual packages is not an option, since the customer would have to bear the increased costs,” said Herzog.

    Currently, Tchibo uses over 20 different box sizes. “It isn’t possible to use more different-sized boxes since they would all have to be at each workstation in the Shipping department and the employees would have to put too much extra effort into their work,” explained the KLU graduate. The problem is finding the right boxes to have at hand. To determine the ideal selection, she programmed different algorithms to test a range of different packing options. “For an average order consisting of six products, there are are any number of ways to put the items into a box,” said Herzog. “You have to test the options to arrive at the box with the smallest volume.” Another important step is inputting the correct boxes into the system. If the optional boxes are all too small, the products will not fit into them and if they are too large, too much unused space is the result – with the familiar consequences.
    To determine the box sizes in the optimal selection, Herzog relied on the data from over 200,000 anonymized orders from 2013. “It takes all night for the computer to finish the calculation – you can’t afford to get anything wrong!” she said. Her calculations led the young.

    Academic to identify a new range of box sizes that improved the average fill level by over 20 percent.

    Prof. Kai Hoberg, the Kühne Logistics University professor for supply chain strategy who supervised her master’s thesis, takes the scenario further: “You could also imagine supplying packaging for stationary retailing that is different from the packaging for the online shop. For online trade, packaging properties such as customer appeal and anti-theft features are not top priority – instead, smaller, simpler packaging is the key here.”
    Academia and online resellers hand in hand. Everyone benefits from collaborations like this.

    *Title of the master’s thesis: “Filling degree optimization of shipping packages in the B2C-market at Tchibo GmbH. An Application of Supply Chain Analytics”

    Expert contends: Bowing out of the UK single pricing system would significantly inflate Scottish logistics costs


    Categories: Faculty & Research

    The world is watching the United Kingdom. The people of Scotland are going to the polls on Thursday, September 18, when they will be asked the "Yes/No" question: Should Scotland become an independent country? Widely being discussed are the consequences and Alan McKinnon, professor of Logistics at Kühne Logistics University, points out that one consequence would be price increases for Scotland.

    If Scotland walked away from the rest of the UK, Professor McKinnon says: “the distribution of supplies from warehouses in England to shops and businesses in Scotland, many of which are currently internal inventory transfers, would become international trade.” And the academic goes on to say that would "be a very costly option and result in higher prices in the Scottish shops". He makes it clear that being part of the UK “translates into lower prices in shops”.

    At present it is expensive for companies to supply the Scottish market because of the long distances, lower population density and imbalances in freight traffic flows. “If an independent Scotland had a different currency and border controls were erected, the cost of distributing goods to Scotland would be further inflated. Under these circumstances, companies currently selling products and services across the UK market at a uniform price would be likely to abandon this practice”, says the logistics expert.

    Alan McKinnon argues that the loss of the UK single pricing system “would significantly inflate Scottish logistics costs, raising the cost of living and impairing business competitiveness.”

    KLU Celebrates Graduation 2014


    Categories: Events, KLU

    When the striking black headwear sails into the air as tradition demands and you see radiant smiles everywhere you look, an academic year has just reached its zenith – the day the graduates receive their diplomas. At Kühne Logistics University (KLU) in Hamburg, the graduates, their families who came from all over the world, their professors and all the university employees had a reason to celebrate today.

    The diploma for a Master of Science in Global Logistics was presented to 25 graduates and 13 received their Master of Science in Management. The 20 members of the Executive Master of Business Administration in Leadership & Logistics program were also bidden farewell during the ceremony today. “A diploma is also confirmation of the fact that you are courageous people who are willing to take on great challenges. I hope you retain your courage and use it to strike out on new paths,” said KLU President Thomas Strothotte to honor of all the new graduates. He wished them good luck for their careers – regardless of where in the world they might begin.

    Klaus-Michael Kühne, president of the Kühne Foundation that supports KLU as its flagship, also directed his words to the student cohort with the diplomas: “Your international experience and the practical and theoretical knowledge you have acquired qualify you to work in one of the fastest-changing areas of today’s business world: the logistics sector. Nowhere else has globalization left such visible marks; nowhere else must managers adapt to changing general conditions as quickly”.
    In his congratulatory speech, Dr. Markus Conrad, the Chairman of the Board at Tchibo GmbH focused on the key importance of logistics for the modern economy: “Everybody talks about ‘digital natives’ and cool start ups. However: Let’s be aware that in most cases ‘logistical natives’ are most crucial for the economic success of new business models. In a globalized and consumer-centric world the optimization of the supply chain is at the centre of technical innovations”.

    A special highlight of this year’s graduation ceremony at KLU was the dedication of the Küttner Globe’s new location. Mr. Kühne and President Strothotte officiated and the artist, Manfred Küttner, was also present. The unique artwork found its new home, the foyer of the KLU building, a few days ago. Before that, the well-crafted rotating globe with a diameter of 1.28 meters was on display at the Federal Press Office in Berlin.

    Revolution in the Global Logistics Sector – The Physical Internet


    Categories: Faculty & Research

    Comprehensive interconnection, speed and effectiveness – a world without the Internet is unimaginable. When something works this well, you have to ask why it only works in the digital world and not the real, physical world. “By 2050 at the latest, the situation may change. The ‘Internet of Things’ will revolutionize the world to the same extent that the Internet did before it,” said Rod Franklin, professor for logistics at Kühne Logistics University in Hamburg.

    As efficiently as supply chains are organized today, “they follow a hypothesis that accepts loads of less than full capacity plus the higher energy costs connected to this, and delays as an intrinsic part of the system,” added Franklin. Today, we can determine exactly where specific goods are located within the supply chain at a specific time and inform our customers that the circumstances dictate a probable delay in delivery of a few days. This represents major progress when it comes to communication. “However, we could also think about how goods might follow completely new channels to get to customers and how to avoid wasting as many resources as possible in the process. We could transfer the unbeatably efficient logic of the Internet to the physical world,” said the logistics expert.

    What we need are smaller, standardized container formats, open source software for complete supply chain maps, and transport means that can be used jointly to move goods around the globe and bring them to their destinations. And of course the vision that this is where the future of logistics lies is also necessary. “Logistics is the most-used industry in the world and at approximately 15% of global GDP annually, also one with significant potential for added value. But we are still not using it effectively enough,” Franklin noted. Only around 10 percent of the logistics services are pure transport services – empty journeys, idle time, loading and unloading take up the remainder.

    How would a supply chain based on the Physical Internet look? Franklin describes it like this: “Trucks will always be loaded to their maximum capacity: therefore, highly effectively. This would eliminate empty journeys. Open source software would ensure that only goods that can be immediately re-distributed by other logistics centers along the route would be transported. It does not matter which producer is the point of origin; and who the transport means belongs to is also unimportant.” The advantages are obvious. Trucks would always be effectively at 100% capacity. The initial drivers would only travel a specific route – others would be responsible for forwarding the freight – and they would transport other goods in other trucks back to the hub in the evening and then go home. The Physical Internet advocate’s balance is convincing: “In sum, this would mean less traffic on the roads, lower emissions and costs, and greater speed, quality, and service.”

    “The Physical Internet is what you get when you think green logistics through to the end,” said Franklin. “And it would be a completely new form of cooperation within the logistics sector. Not all companies can develop their own global network. The sum of all the providers equals the global logistics network, and of course it has to translate into a fair price model in which each provider is appropriately compensated for its part of the logistic service.” When looking into the future, he is sure of one thing: “We can stop concentrating on optimizing the means of transport and start focusing on how we transport. Routes and ownership of the means of transport will no longer be important – the focus will be on speed, costs, and service quality.”

    However, one problem remains: on land, the highly successful standard container for maritime transport is only suitable for train transport. In order to realize the Physical Internet, we will have to develop smaller standard containers that facilitate a producer-to-consumer supply chain. “But is there any reason to think this can’t happen?” asked Franklin. After all, no one saw much of a future for ship containers in the 1950s. But without them, today’s global economy would not exist.

    The Physical Internet will require us to rethink – and think innovatively, too. “We have the technical and technological prerequisites now. Industry 4.0, which is based on digitalization, interconnection and automation, is driving the need for Global Logistics 4.0,” said Franklin with conviction. “If we take on the challenge of re-organizing supply chains and learn to understand them as completely new forms of cooperation, we can change the world for the better.”

    Re-thinking Upper Management. Why top performers actually have no right to special privileges


    Categories: Faculty & Research

    Managers who consistently deliver outstanding performance and are paid accordingly by their companies can take many liberties when it comes to the way they deal with subordinates. A friendly conversational tone, understanding for employees’ concerns, and respect for their achievements – it seems to be generally accepted that these requirements do not necessarily apply to top performers. How wrong!

    A recently published study by Niels Van Quaquebeke, professor for leadership and organizational behavior at Kühne Logistics University in Hamburg, shows: “When top managers behave respectfully towards subordinates, these subordinates are strongly motivated – but an obvious lack of respect triggers subordinate resistance. They are less motivated and play with the idea of leaving the company more frequently.” In comparison the “average” managers does not have this effect on his subordinates.“ This means that top performers have a very special role. Their behavior determines what the atmosphere in the company is like and the level of employee satisfaction as well,” says Van Quaquebeke.

    Most people show mutual respect in two different ways. On the horizontal level – between people of the same standing – they do this primarily by dealing respectfully with each other. On the vertical level between managers and their subordinates, employees often hold their managers in high esteem due to their special competencies and achievements. But the logical consequence is not that top managers are free to behave as they please toward their employees. On the contrary, “Of all people, top performers cannot be allowed to deviate from the norm when it comes to interpersonal relationships, since their employees tend to overinterpret what they say and do,” said the behavioral expert in summary of his findings. Van Quaquebeke’s recommendation is clear: “A compensatory logic like ‘The boss is so good that he can allow himself an interpersonal blunder from time to time’ is false. This is precisely what he should never do.”

    Title of the study: “Getting Respect from a Boss You Respect: How Different Types of Respect Interact to Explain Subordinates’ Job Satisfaction as Mediated by Self-Determination” Link to the study: http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10551-014-2291-8

    KLU Presents Supply Chain Analytics Research at POMS International Conference 2014


    Categories: Faculty & Research, Events, KLU

    Kühne Logistics University demonstrated its strong research focus at the POMS International Conference 2014 (POMS/Production and Operations Management Society) in Singapore – and was the European university with the highest attendance. KLU president Thomas Strothotte gave a keynote speech and Professor Kai Hoberg was invited to hold a 90-minute tutorial session. KLU researchers also presented the findings of their ongoing research in five sessions. In line with the conference theme “Smart Operations in a Connected World,” all of the presentations focused on supply chain analytics research.

    The conference with a special focus on supply chain analytics was hosted by KLU partner National University of Singapore. This approach leverages data from different sources and quantitative methods to generate new insights and improve understanding for better decision making across the supply chain. In his keynote speech, KLU president Thomas Strothotte described the interesting insights into the approach that can be gained from computational visualistics.
    Professor Kai Hoberg held a tutorial session entitled: “Supply Chain Analytics: Landscaping and Gardening.” In it, he presented the examples of data and analytics methodologies that can be applied along the different stages of the supply chain. He drew upon many examples from research projects with industry partners and current publications to illustrate the potential of this new research stream.
    Five KLU researchers presented their current research findings in contributing sessions:
    Professor Jörn Meißner presented “Approximate dynamic programming for lateral transshipment problems in multi-location inventory systems,” a paper in which he proposed a new approach to how we proactively transship goods from one inventory location to another to reduce the risk of stockouts. KLU PhD student Olga Rusyaeva co-authored the paper.

    PhD candidate Florian Badorf presented his paper “Identifying Drivers of Sourcing Decisions in the Automotive Industry - An Empirical Analysis,” in which he tests the major criteria affecting supplier decisions based on more than 60,000 supplier selections in the automotive industry. He co-authored the paper with Felix Papier from Essec Business School.

    PhD candidate Christoph Flöthmann introduced his paper “Career Patterns of Supply Chain Executives: An Optimal Matching Analysis.” He used social network data to identify six common career paths that differ in career slope, previous functional experience, and educational background. The research was supported by McKinsey and Company.

    Sebastian Steinker, also a PhD candidate, presented the paper “The Influence of Weather in Online Retailing - An Empirical Analysis,” based on a study in which he used data from German online retailer Zalando to quantify the impact of weather on daily online sales. He found that sales forecasts used for planning warehouse operations could be significantly improved by by including the weather forecast as a factor.

    Professor Hoberg presented “Inventory Management under Financial Distress: An Empirical Analysis,” the results of a study in which he used data from 198 US manufacturing firms to quantity the effect of inventory being transformed into cash during periods of financial distress. He compared the performance to firms that ultimately defaulted. Hoberg co-authored the papers by Florian Badorf, Christoph Flöthmann, and Sebastian Steinker.

    Logistics champion Germany must keep investing in infrastructure, and above all, minds


    Categories: Faculty & Research

    According to the World Bank’s Logistics Performance Index 2014 (LPI Report), Germany is the world’s current logistics champion (http://lpi.worldbank.org/). The joy is mixed: the poor state of the infrastructure in Germany has been a topic of public discussion for years. The German Association of Cities and Municipalities sees a need for additional investment in the German road network to the tune of €7.2 billion per year. To renovate or build new bridges alone, the country requires €17 billion, adds the German Institute for Urbanism. “But it is not enough to invest in concrete and steel,” says Professor Alan McKinnon from Kühne Logistics University Hamburg (KLU). “More and more, the efficiency of the logistics markets depends on the performance quality and competency of the sector’s managers. Above all, we need to invest in minds.”

    “Germany’s challenge is to retain its top logistics ranking. The 2014 LPI Report indicates how the country can achieve this goal. It shows that the most important USP in the high-income countries’ mature logistics markets is not infrastructure or the customs service – the standard is generally high. Attention is turning to the excellence of young logistics managers,” McKinnon told the 150 guests at the World Bank’s presentation of the LPI results at Kühne Logistics University today (March 31, 2014). Head of the Logistics department at KLU, McKinnon also chairs the Transport Advisory Board for horizon 2020, the EU framework program for research and innovation. In this office, he advises the EU Commission.

    Jean-François Arvis, World Bank senior economist and Christina Busch economist at the World Bank and co-author of the report, presented the LPI Report at KLU.

    McKinnon is not surprised that the World Bank chose to hold its exclusive presentation of the 2014 LPI study results in Germany at KLU, the world’s only logistics university, established in Hamburg in 2010. “Kühne Logistics University’s mission is to train the next generation of logistics managers – who Germany will be able to rely on to maintain its high ranking in future LPI studies,” said McKinnon. “In many countries, there is a shortage of qualified logistics experts and trained staff. If Germany wants to stay at the top, it has to focus on acquiring highly qualified university graduates for the logistics field.”

    Professor Frank Straube (Chair in Logistics at TU Berlin) agrees: “Logistics is the bloodstream of business and society. The current challenges are global transport reliability, volatility, sustainability, the integration of transportation and logistics networks, and the continuing education and training of people.” As the country with the best rating, Germany is the world’s logistics champion in 2014, but the top 9 (the Netherlands, Belgium, Great Britain, Singapore, Sweden, Norway, Luxembourg, the US and Japan) are equals in some aspects and better in others. “Being number 1 in the index is good for bragging rights but in reality, there is little difference between number 1 and number 10,” said Prof. Rod Franklin, Department of Logistics at Kühne Logistics University Hamburg and vice chairman of the Alliance for Logistics Innovation through Collaboration in Europe (ALICE).

    Being the champion does not automatically mean being the best at everything. “While German logistics managers will naturally take pride in their country’s no.1 ranking in this year’s LPI survey, other messages which merit attention emerge from the survey. For example, it confirms that shippers are attaching increasing importance to the environmental performance of logistics operations, particularly in high-income countries like Germany. This is not currently an LPI criterion, but if it were, how high would Germany’s score be?” asks logistics expert McKinnon.

    But ultimately, McKinnon strikes a positive note: “One LPI criterion for which Germany obtained the highest score was the quality of its transport infrastructure. Many managers, politicians, and citizens may be surprised by this result, as they often complain about the state of the country’s transport networks. While in absolute terms it may be deficient, relative to that of other countries, the German infrastructure is judged to be very good.”

    Contact Person

    Prof. Dr. Alan McKinnon
    Head of Logistics Department

    Kühne Logistics University – The KLU Wissenschaftliche Hochschule für Logistik und Unternehmensführung
    Großer Grasbrook 17
    20457 Hamburg

    Tel.: +49 40 328707-271
    Fax: +49 40 328707-109

    E-Mail: alan.mckinnon@the-klu.org

    Alan McKinnon Elected Chairman of EU Transport Advisory Group


    Categories: KLU

    Professor Alan McKinnon has been elected to chair the Transport Advisory Group for Horizon 2020, the EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation. Twenty-nine renowned scientists, business representatives and consultants belong to the group of experts who will advise the European Commission on the orientation of its research and innovation program for 2016-2020 with regard to the areas of transport and logistics. McKinnon is the dean of programs and head of the Logistics department at Kühne Logistics University Hamburg (KLU).

    “I am happy to have received this special honor and look forward to working with Advisory Group and EU officials on the shaping of Europe’s future research agenda for transport and logistics,” said McKinnon. “ Dr. Thomas Strothotte, KLU president, commented: “Being elected to chair the EU Transport Advisory Group shows the extent to which Alan McKinnon is appreciated as an expert worldwide. It underscores the fact that KLU is perceived as a leading scientific center of excellence for global logistics. We are making very good progress.”

    Sandra Transchel is the New Dean of Programs at Kühne Logistics University Hamburg


    Categories: Events, KLU

    Professor Sandra Transchel is the new dean of programs at Kühne Logistics University Hamburg (KLU). The supervisory board of the private university selected her in a unanimous decision. On April 1, 2014, Transchel will replace Prof. Alan McKinnon, who was Dean of Programs for the past two years, in the office. McKinnon would like to devote more time to his research.

    “I am happy about taking on this position of responsibility and that so much trust has been placed in me. At KLU, the requirements and expectations are rising hand in hand with the number of students,” said Professor Sandra Transchel. “We want to continue to provide our students from around the globe the best degree programs possible in the future. We view our programs as units consisting of the highest scientific standards, internships lasting several weeks at major companies, and semesters abroad at one of our partner universities,” added the dean-of-programs-elect. “KLU is experiencing dynamic development in both of its departments – Logistics and Management & Economics. We are currently searching for professors who will reinforce the areas of finance, accounting, management strategy, and the global economy. Our teaching will directly benefit from this,” said Dr. Thomas Strothotte, president of KLU.

    Kühne Logistics University (KLU) opens new university campus in Hamburg HafenCity


    Categories: Events, KLU

    Today, in the presence of the First Mayor of Hamburg, Olaf Scholz, and high-ranking politicians and business people, sponsor Professor Klaus-Michael Kühne officially opened the new KLU campus. The Kühne Foundation is providing a grant of more than €40 million to secure the operation of the university over the coming years.

    In a ceremony held in KLU’s new avant-garde, golden auditorium in Grosser Grasbrook in the HafenCity of Hamburg, Professor Kühne, President of the Kühne Foundation board of trustees, symbolically handed over a hand-forged golden key to KLU’s new President Professor Thomas Strothotte.

    In his speech, Professor Kühne illustrated KLU’s outstanding development into an institution of worldwide significance for students, professors and the whole logistics industry. The KLU is the flagship project of the Kühne Foundation, which is dedicated to promoting higher education, further training, research and teaching in logistics and transport.

    “In view of how well the university has developed, the Kühne Foundation has decided to extend its commitment to supporting academia in logistics and award the Kühe Logistics University with another grant of over €40 million”, said Professor Kühne. He also expressed his delight with the new building: “A first-class university deserves to have a first-class location. What better place is there to study logistics than here in the heart of the new HafenCity in the port of Hamburg.”

    The First Mayor of Hamburg, Olaf Scholz, was also impressed with the university’s new campus and its architectural highlight, the gloden Audimax: “Students studying at the Kühne Logistics University will go on to hold high positions in one of our most important industries of tomorrow. And our thanks go to Professor Kühne for making such a great contribution to consolidating Hamburg’s position as a centre of logistics and academia.”

    Professor Strothotte addressed the guests in his new position, underlining that the new campus and the Kühne Foundation’s generous donation were both a motivation and an obligation to continue the successful development of KLU in higher education and research.

    After the opening ceremony, the KLU President and the KLU sponsor officially bade farewell to the first Master in Management graduates and the second Master in Global Logistics graduates.

    Kühne Logistics University names Professor Thomas Strothotte as new president


    Categories: Events, KLU

    On August 1, 2013, Professor Thomas Strothotte became the new president of Kühne Logistics University. Strothotte was the rector at Universität Regensburg from 2009 until March of this year and held the same position at the University of Rostock for the three years prior to that.

    The KLU has a new president - 53-year-old professor Thomas Strothotte. He will now represent Kühne Logistics University within higher education and in the political sphere.

    “I am particularly looking forward to consolidating and strengthening the KLU’s reputation in the competitive higher education market. After many years in leadership positions at state universities, I see positioning the KLU as a private academic university as one of my greatest challenges to date,” said Strothotte, speaking from his new office in Hamburg’s HafenCity district. “I am confident of the KLU’s potential and will work hard to ensure that its reputation as a high quality institution continues to flourish.”

    Klaus-Michael Kühne, President of the Kühne Foundation board of trustees, is delighted. “In appointing Prof. Strothotte, we were able to hire an acknowledged expert in research and education. The KLU is the Kühne Foundation’s flagship project, and its success and development is of upmost importance to me.”

    Strothotte was born to German parents who raised him bilingually in Canada. He studied Physics and Computer Science at the Simon Fraser University in Vancouver before earning his doctorate in 1984 at McGill University in Montreal. He then took up a position as Professor for Interactive Systems at Freie Universität Berlin. He is also a member of the supervisory board of Evopro Systems Engineering AG, a company based in Nuremberg and Regensburg.

    Ohne Stau in den Urlaub - Forscher der Kühne Logistics University ist sicher: Urlaubsstaus sind vermeidbar


    Categories: Faculty & Research

    25. Juli 2013. „Kein Mensch muss im Stau stehen“, ist Prof. Dr. J. Rod Franklin sicher. Franklin ist akademischer Leiter der Führungskräfteausbildung an der Kühne Logistics University und erforscht dort moderne Verkehrs- und Logistikkonzepte. „Dass private Pkws und gewerblicher Frachtverkehr das Straßennetz gleichzeitig und unkoordiniert nutzen, sorgt gerade in der Ferienzeit für verstopfte Straßen. Wer hier ansetzt, schafft Staus ab“, so Franklin. Mit intelligenten Verkehrsleitsystemen und vorgegebenen Zeitfenstern, in denen entweder private Pkws Vorfahrt haben oder gewerblicher Verkehr,ließen sich Staus vermeiden. Ohne Staus hätte ein durchschnittlicher Bundesbürger in seinem Leben sechs Monate mehr Zeit zur freien Verfügung. Die deutsche Wirtschaft würde 7,8 Milliarden Euro an direkten und indirekten Kosten einsparen.

    Mit gutem Beispiel voran

    Dass solche Maßnahmen greifen und privaten wie gewerblichen Verkehrsteilnehmern nutzen, zeigte bereits 1984 das Verkehrsleitkonzept zu den Olympischen Spielen in Los Angeles. „Damals wurde eine radikale Entscheidung getroffen: Tagsüber untersagte die Verwaltung den Lieferverkehr in der Stadt. Dadurch floss der Berufsverkehr frei, ohne sich irgendwo zu stauen“, erinnert sich Franklin. Denn Lieferverkehr braucht viel Raum: Ein einziger Lkw verdrängt zwei oder drei Pkws. Auch die Transportunternehmen profitieren von einer Reglementierung, die ja alle Anbieter gleichermaßen treffen würde. Stehen ihre Lkws im Stau, verlieren sie wertvolle Zeit und verschwenden teuren Kraftstoff. „In London zum Beispiel sinkt der Nutzen des gewerblichen Verkehrs durch die allgegenwärtigen Staus auf circa 60 Prozent“, weiß Franklin. „Würden Zeitfenster für Lieferverkehr vorgesehen und richteten sich die Unternehmen daran aus, könnten sie ihre Fahrzeuge und Mitarbeiter effizienter einsetzen und wären somit deutlich produktiver.“ 

    Daten für Planung vorhanden

    „Unternehmen der Logistikbranche, Berufsverbände, Behörden und Automobilclubs sammeln umfassende Daten darüber, wer wann warum auf deutschen Straßen unterwegs ist“, weiß Franklin. Gerade in den Sommerferien gibt es ein deutlich erhöhtes Verkehrsaufkommen auf den Autobahnen. „Diese Spitzenbelastungen und damit die Urlaubsstaus sind exakt vorhersehbar“, sagt der Experte. „Mit statistischen Modellen kann man die Ströme der Urlauber genau prognostizieren. Dieses Wissen sollte in einem vernetzten Verkehrsleitsystem genutzt werden, um zum Beispiel Frachtverkehr von stark befahrenen Autobahnen und in übermäßig belasteten Zeiten auf andere Routen umzuleiten oder zeitweilig zu untersagen.“ Die Logistik-Unternehmen könnten die Prognosen bereits bei der Routenplanung berücksichtigen und sich auf freie Zeitfenster einstellen.

    Herausforderung Logistik-Sharing

    Der Experte schlägt neue Lösungen für die Logistikbranche vor, um solche Lücken optimal zu nutzen: Wie beim privaten Car-Sharing sollten die Unternehmen verstärkt Lagerzentren, Lkws und Lieferwagen gemeinsam nutzen. Da sich jedoch viele Unternehmen nicht gerne in die Karten gucken lassen, wenn sie Waren und Dienstleistungen verschicken, hat sich Logistik-Sharing noch nicht durchgesetzt. „Insbesondere die Speditionen und Paketdienstleister wollen alle ihre eigenen, werbewirksamen Fahrzeuge nutzen und meinen, mit eigenen Fahrzeugen zeitlich am flexibelsten zu sein“, so Franklin. Was oft verdrängt wird: Leerfahrten und Staus binden Personal und Fahrzeuge, die Firmen verlieren dadurch bares Geld. „Könnten sich die Dienstleister auf Logistik-Sharing einigen, würde das Verkehrsaufkommen deutlich sinken – ebenso wie die Kosten für den Fuhrpark“, sagt Franklin. „Gäbe es dann noch klare Entscheidungen in der Verkehrssteuerung, damit Lkws und Urlauber nicht mehr gleichzeitig auf den Autobahnen unterwegs sind, wären Staus Geschichte“, ist der Experte sicher.

    Zu wenige Frauen in Führungspositionen: Lust auf Führung stärken


    Categories: Faculty & Research

    Die anhaltende Diskussion um die Frauenquote zeigt: Frauen sind noch längst nicht in den Führungsetagen angekommen. Dabei haben Wissenschaft wie Praxis erwiesen, dass es nicht an mangelnden Fähigkeiten liegt. Frauen führen mindestens so gut wie Männer, in mancher Hinsicht sogar besser. Eine aktuelle Studie belegt jetzt allerdings: Viele Frauen haben keine Lust auf Macht.

    Sie selbst hat es geschafft, und nun will sie auch anderen Frauen den Weg weisen: Sheryl Sandberg, Geschäftsführerin von Facebook, ermutigt in ihrem Buch „Lean in – Women, Work, and the Will to Lead“ („Sich reinhängen – Frauen, Arbeit und der Wille, zu führen“) Frauen zu mehr Selbstbewusstsein und Nachdruck auf ihrem Weg nach oben. Genau am Willen zu führen aber fehlt es oft bei Frauen, zeigte jetzt ein

    In vier Studien befragten Wissenschaftler der Goethe-Universität Frankfurt, Kühne Logistics University in Hamburg und der Ruhr-Universität Bochum über 1500 Frauen und Männer nach ihrer Führungsposition und ihrer Machtmotivation: ob sie andere gern beeinflussen, Entscheidungen für sie treffen und ob sie es mögen, anderen Anweisungen zu geben. Es zeigt sich durchgängig: Frauen finden Macht weniger attraktiv als Männer. Und diese geringere Machtmotivation ist mit entscheidend dafür, ob sie Führungsaufgaben übernehmen.

    Das Team warnt davor, die Ergebnisse einseitig zu interpretieren: „Wir wollen die bestehende Diskriminierung weder kleinreden noch sie den Frauen selbst in die Schuhe schieben“, sagt Prof. Dr. Rolf van Dick, Goethe-Universität Frankfurt. „Die niedrigere Machtmotivation kann nur ein zusätzliches Puzzleteil liefern, um die geringe Anzahl von Frauen in Führungspositionen zu erklären.“

    Allerdings, so stellt das Forscherteam klar, ist der Wille zur Macht lernbar. Führungskräftetrainings können dazu beitragen, die Lust auf Führung zu stärken. Auch Mentorinnen-Programme sieht Prof. Dr. Niels Van Quaquebeke von der Kühne Logistics University als erfolgversprechenden Weg: „Frauen brauchen erfolgreiche Vorbilder, die ihnen zeigen, dass sie es in Führungspositionen schaffen können – und dass es attraktiv ist, dorthin zu kommen.“ Auch eine Quote würde er deshalb unterstützen: „Das klassische Bild des männlichen Chefs muss sich verändern.“


    Der Artikel „Gender Differences in Leadership Role Occupancy – The Mediating Role of Power Motivation“ von Sebastian Schuh, Alina Hernandez-Bark, Niels Van Quaquebeke, Rüdiger Hossiep, Philip Frieg und Rolf van Dick wird in der Fachzeitschrift Journal of Business Ethics veröffentlicht.

    Wanted: Studierte Supply Chain Manager für Führungsaufgaben - Aussicht: Ausgezeichnetes Gehalt.


    Categories: Faculty & Research

    Das ist eine der Kernaussagen aktueller Studienergebnisse, die Professor Dr. Kai Hoberg von der Kühne Logistics University (KLU) mit Unterstützung der Online-Jobbörse StepStone erstellt hat. Hochinteressante Ergebnisse sind bei der Studie herausgekommen. Erstklassig ausgebildete Mitarbeiter, die den komplexen Anforderungen in Logistik, Einkauf, und Supply Chain Management gerecht werden, sind rar und haben ihren Preis. Um die besten Mitarbeiter zu finden, muss sich die hervorragende Qualifikation auch im Gehalt wieder finden.

    Grundlage der Studie bilden Daten des umfassenden Gehaltsreports von StepStone, der führenden Jobbörse für Fachkräfte und Führungspersonal. Für diesen wurden insgesamt 40.000 Teilnehmer befragt, davon rund 2.000 Mitarbeiter in den Supply Chain Funktionen Logistik, Einkauf und Supply Chain Management. Neben dem Gehalt wurden auch Daten zu Verantwortung, Berufserfahrung und Ausbildung zusammen getragen. 

    Auffällig ist, dass sich der Bildungsgrad der Teilnehmer deutlich unterscheidet: Im Supply Chain Management ist dieser am höchsten, (rund 73 % haben einen Studienabschluss), im Einkauf rund die Hälfte und in der Logistik nur ein Viertel. Gleichzeitig haben in der Logistik viele Mitarbeiter mit niedrigerem Bildungsgrad Mitarbeiterverantwortung. „Spannend war vor allem zu sehen, dass das Bildungsniveau bei jüngeren Mitarbeitern in allen Funktionen deutlich ansteigt. Im Durchschnitt haben bereits 59 % der Jobeinsteiger einen akademischen Abschluss im Gegensatz zu 24 % der über 60-jährigen“, so Hoberg. „Außerdem ist der Anteil der Frauen mit Studium auf allen Ebenen höher, d.h. sie sind besser ausgebildet als die Männer, mit denen sie auf gleicher Funktionsebene stehen“, erklärt Hoberg. 

    Besonders wird deutlich, dass Berufe in der Logistik nicht so gut bezahlt werden wie im Supply Chain Management. Das durchschnittliche Gehalt von Mitarbeitern mit Personalverantwortung im SCM liegt rund 20 % über dem durchschnittlichen Gehalt aller Unternehmensfunktionen, bei rund 78.000 Euro Jahresgehalt im Gegensatz zu rund 44.000 Euro in der Logistik. Die Gründe dafür liegen in den hohen Anforderungen, die ein Supply Chain Manager erfüllen muss und dem vorteilhaften Industrie-Mix, aber auch in der oft niedrigen Bezahlung von Logistikern in ihrer Kern-Branche. Dazu ist der Gehaltszuwachs mit der Berufserfahrung im SCM deutlich höher als in der Logistik. Nach 25 Jahren Berufserfahrung kann über 111 % mehr verdient werden als beim Einstieg. In der Logistik liegt das Durchschnittsgehalt dagegen nach 25 Jahren nur rund 50 % höher. 

    Eine Erklärung hierfür ist, dass der Bereich Supply Chain Management sich stark weiterentwickelt hat und dem Arbeitnehmer eine hohe Expertise, strategisches Denken und analytische Fähigkeiten abverlangt. „Das Problem ist, die richtige Besetzung für einen Job im SCM zu bekommen. Oft wissen die Firmen nicht, wie sie an gut ausgebildete Leute herankommen sollen. Und die qualifizierten Mitarbeiter haben eben ihren Preis,“ so Hoberg weiter. 

    Heraus kam auch, dass die bestbezahltesten Tätigkeitsbereiche des Supply Chain Managements in der Beratung, der Chemie- und Konsumgüterindustrie sind. Hier kann ohnehin das meiste Geld verdient werden und ist somit bei allen Absolventen begehrt. „Die Innovationsfähigkeit der Logistik-Funktionen leidet deutlich unter dem Mangel an gut ausgebildeten Experten. Um aber aus dem reinen Kosten-Fokus herauszukommen, muss der Bereich neue Lösungen hervorbringen. Das funktioniert nur mit kompetitiven Gehältern“, betont Hoberg, selbst Professor für Supply Chain und Operations Strategie.

    Kühne Logistics University Students Develop Logistics Quiz iPhone App


    Categories: Faculty & Research, KLU

    The students in the Master in Global Logistics program at Kühne Logistics University (KLU) – Wissenschaftliche Hochschule für Logistik und Unternehmensführung – have developed a new Logistics quiz in their Supply Chain Management course.

    We've done it! If you enter “KLU” as a search term in the Apple iTunes Store, you can now download the free Logistics and SCM quiz developed by KLU students. 

    Under the direction of Professor Dr. Kai Hoberg, the 26 students put a trimester of hard work into the project. “Our aim was to develop a quiz that mapped all of the areas comprising Logistics and, at the same time, would be fun and informative for both the students and the experts,” said Hoberg. The future logistics experts developed a multiple choice game with eleven areas of Logistics for players to choose their area of play from: Humanitarian Logistics, Production Logistics, and Maritime Logistics, for example. To create the quiz, each student was asked to develop 15 questions with varying levels of difficulty and work out a variety of possible answers. 

    “The KLU quiz is highly interactive, intuitive, and lots of fun. We wanted the game to introduce the different areas of Logistics and reach a broad target group,” explained Paloma Piris, one of the students who worked on the app. The group of students has successfully created an entertaining, instructive game. “We are very proud of the result and hope that the game appeals to many people,” said Piris. “We especially want them to use it as an educational game for entertainment.” The game is now available via the iTunes App Store – free of charge. 

    For more information on the KLU Logistics and SCM Quiz, visit 


    Top Flight for Hamburg Kühne Logistics University (KLU) in Handelsblatt Uni Ranking


    Categories: Events, KLU

    Just two years after it was founded, the KLU has reached the top tier in the newly published research rankings for 120 business studies faculties in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. The newly founded university, with its small faculty, was able to hold its own against powerful competition with much larger numbers of professors. In the research performance per professor ranking, the KLU made it to the Top Ten, coming in seventh, and with this outstanding result it is on a par with long-establisheduniversities such as Mannheim, Munich and Cologne.

    KLU Research Dean Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Sönke Albers was delighted. With an outstanding ninth place among 2,100 business studies professors, he was rated one of the most active researchers in the German, Austrian and Swiss region. “Success in the rankings is no coincidence,” he said. “We defined research as a core task for the KLU from the outset. Unlike many private universities, we see it not as a superfluous luxury but as a fundamental prerequisite for first-rate teaching. At the KLU we can offer our professors an excellent environment thanks to the magnificent support that we receive from our sponsor, the Kühne Foundation. That is why we are able to attract researchers of international repute.”

    The KLU’s English-language study programs are geared entirely to international standards and are of interest for researchers at international universities too. That was why Professor Alan McKinnon, a Scot who was also awarded a top-flight research rating by Handelsblatt, moved from Edinburgh to Hamburg. Other faculty colleagues were recruited from highly reputed institutions such as INSEAD, the Erasmus University in Rotterdam and the Singapore Management University.

    The outstanding Handelsblatt ranking proves just how internationally aligned and strong the research of the young KLU faculty is. Prof. Dr. Niels van Quaquebeke is rated one of the best young researchers under the age of forty. “And we are still only at the beginning of our development,” Dean Albers said. “In the years ahead we aim to stay right on track and move further into the top ranks of European universities.”

    The KLU’s first 23 Master of Science in Global Logistics graduates also had every reason to be jubilant at their graduation ceremony in Hamburg’s Maritime Museum. KLU sponsor, and guest of honor, Klaus-Michael Kühne was deeply impressed by the university’s pace of development. A logistics entrepreneur, he has already invested €30 million in setting up and developing the university in his native Hamburg. He has also ensured longterm funding of the KLU by the Kühne Foundation.

    “Bosses Should Say What They Don’t Stand For” - Kühne Logistics University study confirms influence of “counter-ideal” leader values on employee loyalty


    Categories: Faculty & Research

    Employees are guided not only by their bosses’ ideal values but also, to at least the same extent, by their “counter-ideal values”—that is values that the boss rejects. This is confirmed by a new study undertaken by Niels Van Quaquebeke, Professor of Leadership and Organizational Behavior at the Kühne Logistics University in Hamburg. If employees and their bosses advocate the same values and reject similar so-called counter-ideal values, employees will identify with their bosses and respect them more than they would otherwise do. Van Quaquebeke interviewed a total of 260 employees in different industries from all over Germany.

    Counter-Ideal Values Were Taboo 

    By investigating the dimension of “counter-ideal values,” or undesirable attitudes or behavior, Professor Van Quaquebeke has shed light on a blind spot in psychological research. Until now, ideal values have always been the focal point of debate, including corporate debate. “In their guiding principles and mission statements, companies engage in an incredible amount of hype about their ideals, yet most fail to say what they distance themselves from,” according to Van Quaquebeke. Google, in contrast, takes a different perspective with its statement “Don’t be evil!” “What Google says in plain terms is that we may not be good guys but we do respect moral principles. For many employees this corresponds more to their own attitude than a vague statement of values,” Van Quaquebeke says. 

    A New Dimension for Personnel Management

    An essential finding of the study is that counter-ideal values are not the opposite of values; they are a second, a separate and independent dimension. He and his colleagues were able to provide solid evidence for this by means of a large number of regression analyses. “Wanting the boss not to be mean is not to be equated with wanting him to always behave fairly,” Van Quaquebeke says. “For prevention-oriented people it is more important to avoid negatives, whereas people who are promotion-oriented are guided more strongly by the values to which they aspire.” 

    That, he argues, is why defining oneself as being opposed to counter-ideal values is a major means of strengthening the so-called employer brand. A company that defines itself as opposing luxury and waste will, for example, attract and secure the loyalty of employees who share similar views. Executives of a company of this kind ought then really to forgo visible luxury. “It is very easy to check whether a company sets itself apart credibly from counter-ideal values,” Van Quaquebeke warns. These results are particular interesting considering that, overall, employees of German firms lack identification. The GfK Group’s latest Employee Engagement Study showed that only 13 percent of 18- to 29-year-old German employees have any strong sense of attachment to their employer. 

    Market Positioning Often Incomplete

    The study also makes it clear why companies can position themselves more clearly vis-à-vis customers and set themselves apart from the competition by deliberately eschewing counter-ideal values. Industries such as the power utilities already do so. Eco-power providers, for example, not only champion regenerative electric power; they also expressly reject conventional energy sources. By so doing they generate loyalty among certain groups of customers more effectively than by means of a mere commitment to sustainability. 

    The Kühne Logistics University study appeared in the Journal of Business Ethics, which only publishes work that has undergone a peer review.

    Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Sönke Albers receives EMAC Distinguished Marketing Scholar Award


    Categories: Faculty & Research, Events, KLU

    Sönke Albers, Dean of Research of the KLU, has been honored by the European Marketing Association (EMAC) with the 2011 EMAC Distinguished Marketing Scholar Award. The award is the highest honor that a marketing scholar who has had extensive connections with EMAC can receive. Albers, who is the first German to receive this award, was chosen by an international panel for his outstanding contributions to marketing research and his role in developing marketing science.

    Throughout his career, Sönke Albers has authored close to 200 academic publications, including 73 articles in referred academic journals. Being one of the first German marketing scholars to publish his work internationally, many of his influential studies appeared in top-rated journals such as Marketing Science, Journal of Marketing Research, International Journal of Research in Marketing or European Journal of Operational Research. He has consistently been named one of the bestperforming researchers in the German-language area according to the most influential Handelsblatt Ranking. I.e., he was ranked 8th in 2005 and 7th in 2009, out of more than 2,500 academics in Business Administration, on the basis of scientific publications. 

    With his academic background originally based in operations research, he became a pioneer of modern quantitative marketing with a clear focus on empirical research, publishing ground-breaking papers especially in the fields of sales management, innovation diffusion and budget optimization techniques. His long list of recognitions include the 2005 Best Papers Award of the International Journal of Research in Marketing and the 2010 Gary Lilien Practice Prize, the most prestigious award for marketing research brought to practice. 

    As Dean of WHU Vallendar, Dean at CAU Kiel and currently as Dean of Research at KLU, as well as past-president of the German Academic Association for Business Research (VHB), Sönke Albers had a profound impact on the German academic community. He was thesis supervisor for 31 Ph.D. students, many of whom belong today to the leading European marketing researchers, such as Henrik Sattler (University of Hamburg), Manfred Krafft (University of Münster), Bernd Skiera (University of Frankfurt) or Marc Fischer (University of Cologne). In particular for these achievements for the internationalization of the German marketing science community, and his continuous engagement in mentoring junior faculty, Sönke Albers was awarded an honorary doctorate degree from the University of Frankfurt in 2005.

    New problem-based management MSc!


    Categories: Events, KLU

    The Kühne Logistics University in Hamburg launches an MSc in Management program beginning in the 2011 winter semester. The program is based on an innovative learning method that enables students to gain applied knowledge, develop their problem-solving skills and work effectively as part of a team.

    The key difference between this and other such courses is the use of problem-based, interdisciplinary learning methods. In problem-based learning, the initial focus is on a particular challenge which the students have to solve using knowledge and techniques from a variety of management disciplines (interdisciplinary learning). The students largely work independently but are assisted in their task by specially trained tutors who support and oversee the learning process. 

    This key idea is reflected in the central aspect of the KLU course: two “Integration Projects”, each lasting several months, in which students have to tackle a real-world problem (e.g. “Should Airbus establish a subsidiary in China?”). The subject is first broken down into smaller units and then addressed in group work. During the project, the students will continually come up against their limits and discover they require additional knowledge. These gaps can then be filled via lectures, tutorials and debates chosen in consultation with the KLU’s tutors and professors, or via guided self-study. The course content is thus developed by students themselves in a problem-based, real-world context rather than within the confines of traditional teaching subjects. This enables students to gain applied knowledge and interdisciplinary capabilities and to develop their individual problem-solving skills. Furthermore, working in small groups on a real-life problem and combining the group work to create a coordinated solution proposal also helps to develop students’ social skills and team-mindedness. 

    In addition to a semester abroad at one of our partner schools in Europe, Asia, South America and the USA, students also undertake a two-month internship. The fees for the course, which will be taught entirely in English, are 7,500 euros per academic year (15,000 euros in total) and can be financed via deferred payments. For 2011 entry, two merit scholarships will be offered. Applications for these scholarships can be made once a place has been confirmed and must be received by 30 April. The closing date for applications for the course itself is 30 June 2011. Teaching begins on 1 September 2011.

    Study Logistics & Leadership in Hamburg, Germany!


    Categories: Events, KLU

    International Global Logistics MSc course to start at new logistics university in Hamburg’s HafenCity, Germany on 27th September.

    This new postgraduate degree course combines the subject areas of logistics, management and leadership and is open to students from around the world. It is aimed at holders of bachelor degrees who wish to deepen their understanding of logistics and supply chain management and who see expertise in logistics as an ideal preparation for management roles in their future careers. In addition to a semester abroad at one of the partner universities in Asia or North America, students will also complete a threemonth internship. The 2-year program will be taught in English. The course fees are 7,500 euros per year (15,000 euros in total) and the deadline for applications for the 2010/11 academic year is 15th July 2010. The degree program begins on the 27th September 2010. Potential applicants can find out more about the Global Logistics MSc at “THE KLU Open Day” on 28th May 2010 at the Kühne + Nagel building in the HafenCity (Großer Grasbrook 11-13, 20457 Hamburg). 

    Of the new MSc, Dr. Wolfgang Peiner, founding president of the university says: “Few subjects can better prepare tomorrow’s managers for the global challenges than a broad understanding of logistics. This is exactly what our MSc provides. In contrast to other courses, it places particular emphasis on issues such as responsible corporate management. The KLU will have a consistently international orientation backed up by a high-quality international program faculty, who as well as teaching the MSc courses, will also aid in recruiting future faculty and contribute their personal research networks to the establishment of our university.”

    Founding of the Kühne Logistics University (KLU) – Wissenschaftliche Hochschule für Logistik und Unternehmensführung


    Categories: Events

    The Kühne School of Logistics and Management GmbH, whose sole shareholder is the non-profit Kühne Foundation, is founding a private independent university: The Kühne Logistics University (KLU) – Wissenschaftliche Hochschule für Logistik und Unternehmensführung. The founding President of the University is Dr. Wolfgang Peiner.

    The Kühne Foundation and the Technical University of Hamburg-Harburg (TUHH) have agreed, within the context of the founding of the KLU, that the former Kühne School will be released from its alliance with the TUHH. From now on the KLU will be part of the Hamburg cluster for logistics research institutes, which, in addition to the TUHH, also includes the Fraunhofer Center for Maritime Logistics and Services (CML). Further, the KLU will cooperate with other Hamburg universities.

    The next five years will see the KLU develop two international non-consecutive Master’s Programmes, a Bachelor’s Programme, and a continuing education programme. The profile of the KLU will be completed with a PhD fellowship programme as well as international and interdisciplinary research. The central theme of the KLU is Business Management with a particular focus on “Logistics”, in its economic, technological and international aspects. It is thus intended to serve as exemplary education for qualified management and leadership in complex circumstances.

    The KLU plans to launch its teaching activities in October 2010 with the first non-consecutive Master of Science programme in "Global Logistics". The Programme includes a period of study at one of the Asian, European or American partner schools. The Kühne School’s successful Executive Programmes will continue and be expanded. State recognition will shortly be applied for from the Education and Science authorities of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg, and discussions to date on this matter have been promising.

    The Kühne Foundation is currently examining potential locations for a dedicated building for the University in the HafenCity of Hamburg.

    The Founding President is Dr. Wolfgang Peiner, a trained freight forwarder and chartered accountant, who for many years was the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Gothaer Insurance Group. He was also Finance Senator of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg, a post which he held from 2001 – 2006 and in which capacity, he was also a member of the Science Council for five years. For three years he has been a member of the University Council of the Technical University of Hamburg-Harburg. Among other mandates, Dr. Peiner is a member of the Board of Directors of the Kühne + Nagel International AG as well as Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Germanischer Lloyd.

    Dr. Markus Baumanns of Schumacher&Baumanns GmbH, is leading and supporting the development of the KLU. As Managing Director of the Bucerius Law School from 2001 to 2006, Dr. Baumanns was responsible for establishing Germany’s first private university of law, and from 2006 to 2009, he was an executive member of the board of the Ebelin and Gerd Bucerius ZEIT-Stiftung in Hamburg. Together with Dr. Jeanny Wildi-Yune, Dr. Baumanns is also in charge of management of both the Kühne School of Logistics and Management GmbH and the KLU. Karl Gernandt has been chosen to be the Chairman of the Supervisory Board of the Kühne School. He has been a delegate of the Board of Directors of Kühne + Nagel International AG and of Kühne Holding AG, as well as member of the Board of Trustees of the Kühne Foundation in Schindellegi (Switzerland) and Managing Director of the Klaus-Michael Kühne Foundation, Hamburg.

    “The Kühne-Foundation wants to increase the attractiveness of the globally active industry of Logistics as an academic subject and as a field of research, and also to help strengthen the standing of the academic stronghold of Hamburg against international competition,” says Klaus-Michael Kühne, the sole donor of the Foundation.

    The Supermarket Shelves Are Empty- Research project for a secure food supply


    Categories: Events

    When several public holidays occur back to back and the stores are closed, we get an idea of what it must be like when the supermarket shelves gradually empty out and certain products are difficult or impossible to purchase.

    In the wake of natural disasters or other crises, products are not the only things that disappear from view. Part of the food supply could be seriously disrupted for longer periods of time when the logistics processes in the distribution of goods no longer function smoothly. The academics in the SEAK project (Simulation-based decision making support for interdisciplinary crisis management) are researching the extent to which consumers and retailers are really endangered by scenarios like these and which measures and information support risk and crisis management.

    In this workshop, the SEAK project group will share current information on its exciting, practice-related research results and be available to interested experts and the public for discussion. They will also present the systems and guiding principles for decision-making support in bottleneck situations that make the transparent mapping of goods flows and analysis of the various causes and consequences of supply bottlenecks possible. In the corporate context, the approaches developed can also be used for issues in network planning, risk management and market analysis. The experts will also present recommendations for preventive and reactive measures in risk and crisis management based on the results of three scenarios: an IT failure, a strike and a heat wave of above-average length. Discussion to follow.

    Date:  December 10, 2015
    Time:  11:00 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
    Place:  Kühne Logistics University, Großer Grasbrook 17, 20457 Hamburg

    Since modern logistics networks feature a high level of interconnection, they are particularly vulnerable to disruptions during crisis situations. “At these times, an interdisciplinary supply chain and risk management approach becomes essential,” said Dr. Hanno Friedrich, assistant professor at Kühne Logistics University in Hamburg. At the same time, the measures must be integrated into company systems, because according to Friedrich: “using stock solutions for events that only occur occasionally does not satisfy practical requirements.”
    The SEAK (www.seak-projekt.de) research project is funded with €2 million as part of the Security Research Program of the Federal Ministry for Education and Research. The group consists of Kühne Logistics University (KLU), TU Darmstadt, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), 4flow AG, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Dialogik gGmbH and well-known application partners.

    Please register via e-mail: seak@verkehr.tu-darmstadt.de.
    Registration deadline: November 30, 2015 (Participation is free of charge.)