Family businesses, with approximately 3 million companies in Germany, are the mainstay of the national economy, and developments in other German speaking countries are concurrent. These businesses are characterized by their long-term business strategies, their entrenchment in the region and their high value orientation.
The focus of research approaches at German universities up to now has already developed important approaches for the current strategic and operative challenges family businesses face that need to be further intensified.
Zeppelin University – embedded in a tight network of family businesses in Germany, Austria and Switzerland – considers it to be the university’s responsibility to establish an independent university institute in cooperation with the IHK Bodensee-Oberschwaben, Schwaben and Ulm, and the family businesses foundation. The organization of the „Friedrichshafen Institute for Family Businesses | FIF,“ in the department of economics, began in the summer of 2008. Interdisciplinary research and successor qualification, as well as a special focus on entrepreneur training orientated to the needs of family businesses are at the foreground.
Zeppelin University sees itself as an entrepreneurial university, as an enabling university. In the department of economics this specifically means the facilitation of qualifications for entrepreneurs and successors- despite university!
FIF places value on theory work, as well as empirical analysis with differentiated analyses for branches, family businesses, families and their decision makers and the medialization and politicization of research with a focus on societal, regulatory and entrepreneurial development.
FIF is oriented towards the corresponding full time programs and the part-time master program with the profile of a generalist capable of specialization. Therefore, the subjects of law and taxes, finance, corporate governance, international accounting and responsibility are dealt with in the further context of other university departments for politics, as well as culture and communication sciences.