People - 01.02.2020 - 00:00 

Appointment: Isabella Hatak

Prof. Dr. Isabella Hatak has been Full Professor for Management of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises at the University of St.Gallen since 1 February 2020. At the same time, she will become Director of the Swiss Research Institute of Small Business and Entrepreneurship (SME-HSG).

1 February 2020. Dr. Isabella Hatak was born in Austria on 25 December 1983. After completing her Master’s degree in International Business Relations with honours, she completed her PhD at the Vienna University of Economics and Business in 2010 on the topic “Competence, Trust and Cooperation: An Experimental Study”, also with honours. After her doctorate, she obtained diplomas of advanced study, such as “Academic Systemic Coach, Organizational Consultant and Personnel Development Officer” in 2012 and an MSc in “Coaching and Organization Development” in 2013, with honours. In 2012, she was appointed assistant professor with management functions at the RiCC Research Institute (WU) and the Institute for Innovation Management (JKU) as well as being granted research stays at Aalto University and ARU Cambridge. In 2015, she received her habilitation at the Vienna University of Economics and Business with the title “Entrepreneurial Behavior: Contributions to the Exploitation of Entrepreneurial Opportunities in New and within Existing Organizations”. In the same year she was appointed Associate Professor for Strategic Entrepreneurship at the University of Twente (NL).

Behaviour, emotions and health in SMEs

Prof. Dr. Isabella Hatak has already published the results of her research in more than thirty renowned professional journals, four of which are papers in FT50 journals (Journal of Management Studies, Journal of Business Venturing, Entrepreneurship Theory & Practice, Journal of Business Ethics). Her research focuses on the preconditions and success effects of entrepreneurial personality (e.g. narcissism, modesty), emotions (e.g. passion), health (e.g. mental health and mental characteristics such as ADHD, physical health, stress, burn-out) as well as entrepreneurial behaviour (e.g. transformation of founding intentions into actions, proactive design of risky innovation processes in SMEs), taking into account the entrepreneurial embedding in the institutional and family context.

In recent years, she has devoted herself in depth to questions concerning the mental and physical health and well-being of entrepreneurs and their spouses. She is at the forefront of shaping this young and highly influential field of research. Isabella Hatak argues: “Health is everyone’s business. It influences our daily lives, our careers, and the overall productivity of our society. At the same time, we can shape our health on a broad scale. This is exactly what I find so exciting as a researcher: research must promote the ability to shape life and success. Only in this way can it have an effect and be meaningful – and this can be achieved if we devote ourselves to issues such as health, which are ‘hot topics’ among entrepreneurs and which can be proactively shaped by them.”

The new HSG professor is active on the editorial boards of leading academic journals, for example Entrepreneurship Theory & Practice, International Small Business Journal or the Journal of Small Business Management. Her impressive profile as a researcher is rounded off by many research awards. She is exceptionally well networked in the international research community.

International teaching experience on all levels

Thanks to her international teaching and supervision experience at all academic levels (Bachelor, Master, Doctorate) and in executive education, Prof. Dr. Isabella Hatak has already come into contact with the HSG and Switzerland before officially taking office, for example as a lecturer in the “SME Intensive Study” programme, the academic management of which she will also take over. She is also a member of the jury of the “Prix SVC Ostschweiz” and the BGM Ostschweiz.

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