Thorsten Busch, University of St. Gallen (HSG)
Thorsten studied political science, economics, and business administration in Oldenburg (Germany) and St. Gallen (Switzerland) and holds a good old-fashioned Magister Artium from the University of Oldenburg. During his studies, he was an intern at several media outlets and at the German Federal Parliament (Bundestag) in Berlin. He also worked for three professors in the fields of strategic management, political finance, and political theory. During his graduate studies, he was one of the co-founders of sneep Oldenburg, and he has been highly interested in business ethics ever since. After graduation, Thorsten was a research assistant in social network research at the University of Oldenburg before starting his PhD project at the University of St. Gallen in 2007. Since then, he has been working at its Institute for Business Ethics as a research assistant to Peter Ulrich. In 2008, Thorsten did consultancy work for the Berlin-based think tank "Wertikale" (corporate partners: Deutsche Bahn, E.ON, EnBW). With his colleague Alexander Lorch, he taught a business ethics class at Popakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg, Mannheim, in May 2010. In July 2010, Thorsten was awarded a place on the Oxford Internet Institute's Summer Doctoral Programme. Since September 2010, he is doing research on his PhD project at the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University.
Thorsten's PhD project focuses on the responsibilities of companies in the information and communication technologies (ICT) sector when it comes to regulating access to information. Empirically, transnational ICT companies like Google, Microsoft, Apple or Facebook have millions of customers and effectively act as "quasi-governmental" regulators within their borders of the online and offline space. This affects issues like standards and formats, licensing, copyright, patents, and net neutrality, all of which can be designed in a more open or proprietary kind of way. The interesting aspect from an ethical point of view is whether these ICT regulations by companies can be considered fair, or whether they contribute to maintaining digital divides. In order to analyze and address these questions and their implications for strategic management, corporate citizenship theory is applied to several cases from the fields mentioned above.
Prof. em. Dr. Peter Ulrich, University of St. Gallen
Dr. Urs Gasser, Berkman Center for Internet and Society, Harvard University
thorsten.busch [at] doctoral-academy [dot] net