4404647: Research Design and Management

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Semester:WS 17/18
Lektionen / Semester:46.5 L / 35.0 h
Selbststudium:115.0 h



Doktoratsstudium Wirtschaftswissenschaften (01.09.2008)
Doktoratsstudium Architektur und Raumentwicklung (01.09.2010)


Details with Schedule

Role of the module in the doctoral study plan
The module is required as a cross-faculty course in the preparation phase of the doctoral programs “Architecture and Planning” and “Business Economics”.

Subject definition
This module supports formal research training at the doctoral level by focusing on fundamental aspects of research design, particularly through the lens of the special disciplines, styles of inquiry and cultures of learning at the University of Liechtenstein. It also helps to develop research management skills.
Research design describes 'the structure of any scientific work. It gives direction and systematizes the research. Different types of research designs have different advantages and disadvantages.'1 In technical terms a typical research design is a detailed outline of how an investigation will take place. A research design will typically include how data is to be collected, what instruments will be employed, how the instruments will be used and the intended means for analysing data collected.
Research management skills, or so called transferable skills, comprise the ability to manage projects, be self-motivated and autonomous, network internationally, to think analytically and to be creative, inquisitive and original. In combining both research design and management skills, the University of Liechtenstein aligns itself with aspirations of the League of European Research Universities (LERU). It calls for an innovative doctoral education that brings together cohorts of candidates and includes elements of professional development training. This combination nurtures a range of skills that help PhD candidates to be more effective in their research projects but also to nurture abilities that will be useful in their future lives and careers.

To provide a tailored program, the PhD students attend one topic of ‘Specialisation according to PhD study’ (4 taught lecture units). In addition to this, the PhD students select five topics from the pool of “General academic and technical skills” and participate in all of the topics from the pool “Personal and professional management skills”. The features of the series “Personal and professional management skills” are open lectures, and every interested staff member is invited to join and listen.

Specific academic and technical skills

  • Introduction to Research Design (mandatory: two taught units)
Specialisation according to PhD study

Mandatory: One topic from this group (four taught units per topic), according to the student’s focus area
  • Research Design for Business Process Management
  • Research Design for Finance
  • Research Design for Entrepreneurship
  • Research Design for Sustainable Building
  • Research Design for Sustainable Urban Design and Planning
  • Research Design for Architectural Theory

General academic and technical skills
Electives: Students have to select 5 topics from this group (two taught units per topic)
  • Use and types of Observations and Surveys
  • Intervention and Evaluation Research Design
  • Experimental Research Design
  • Correlational Research Design
  • Panel Data: Fixed and Random Effects
  • Big Data Skills
  • Literature Reviews
  • Concepts of Time-Series Econometrics
  • Inquiry by design
  • Round table Experience of tutors I
  • Round table Experience of tutors II
  • Round table Experience of PhD students I
  • Round table Experience of PhD students II

Personal and professional management skills
Mandatory (one taught unit per topic)
  • Ethics
  • Publication process
  • International doctoral exchange / PhD network
  • Project management
  • Intrapersonal & Self-leadership Skills
  • Interpersonal & Leadership Skills
  • Written & Oral Communication
  • Grant application process


  • The course aims to develop a range of skills that help PhD candidates to be more effective in their dissertation research but also to work on a broader range of transferable and widely applicable skills that will be useful in their future lives and careers, qualifying them as competent researchers beyond the assembly and execution of their particular dissertations.By imparting skills in research design and management, and an appreciation of modes of independent modes of insight acquisition, this module pursues high academic aims. It provides an understanding of the logic and procedures involved in the discovery and formation of knowledge, of the planned development, interpretation and sharing of evidence and findings, and the conception and architecture of research programs and projects in this pursuit. It presents specific personal andacademic competencies supporting this quest. Participants will learn to appreciate the structure and performance of successful research endeavours. They will acquire conceptual and technical skills needed for designing their own research approaches, styles and methodical constructs.After completing the module, students will be able toappreciate the value of a sound research design and well constructed research project architecture independently conduct resarch design and method recherches and evaluate and select options assemble and test research designs for their own projects, evolving dynamic models capable of being optimised over time embark on a self-propelled path towards mastering a range of essential time, resource and other research management skills speak the language of research design and management, and converse reflectively with teams in house and internationally develop personal yet professional and continually evolving research styles and customise management and communication options responsibly devise research programspursue their funding and establish their standing in the published research communities appreciate the range of research styles and cultures across the University of Liechtenstein and in wider research communities


  • Teaching aims are toprovide an overview about current approaches to research designbuild abilities to evaluate research design cases from a diversity of fieldsimpart an ability to develop the research design for their dissertationdevelop a broader understanding of and skills in research design across different topics and styles and inquirynurture the ability to initiate, fund, manage, promote and publish projectshelp participants in their quest to become more self-motivated and autonomousassist in developing cooperative frames locally, and networks internationallybuild confidence in analytic and creative thoughtpromote curiosity, inquisitiveness and originality in research.



Interactive, seminar style presentations and discussions


A detailed module handbook, reading resources and corresponding handouts will be available.
The following books illustrate some of the most elementary aspects:
Cresswell, J.W. 2009. Research Design: Qualitative, Quantitative & Mixed Method Approaches. Sage
Denzen, N.K. and Y.S. Lincoln. 2002. The SAGE handbook of qualitative research. Sage
Groat, L. and D. Wang. 2002. Architectural research methods. Wiley
Recker, J. 2013. Scientific Research in Information Systems: A Beginner’s Guide. Springer
Saunders, M.N.K., P. Lewis, and A. Thornhill. 2012. Research Methods for Business Students, Pearson
Zeisel, J. 2006. Inquiry by Design: Environment/Behavior/Neuroscience in Architecture, Interiors, Landscape, and Planning. W.W. Norton


  • The students will be assessed in this module througha seminar paper,the presentation and defence of the seminar paper,and their participation in class.In the seminar paper the students will be asked to outline and discuss a potential research design for their dissertation. That way, the seminar paper builds on knowledge acquired in the course, and it serves to transfer this knowledge to the students’ individual PhD project. Attendance of all mandatory and selected classes as well as the presentations is expected; 80% attendance is required for a positive grade.


  • PWW-DS_Research Design and Management (WS 17/18, in Bewertung)