PhD position Business & IT at UGentMIS, Dept. Business Informatics and Operations Management

The UGentMIS research team of the Dept. of Business Informatics and Operations Management will open a PhD position (junior assistant) for research and (limited) teaching in Business & IT (teaching requires mastering of the Dutch language). The candidate is expected to complete a PhD research within 4 – 6 years.

The UGentMIS research team is headed by Prof. Geert Poels, assisted by Prof. Frederik Gaillly (associate professor) and Prof. Amy Van Looy (assistant professor). We are active in the domains of Enterprise Modelling/Architecture and Business Process Management (both from managerial and technological perspectives). The current themes in our research are threefold:

How to ensure that IT delivers business value (with particular emphasis on business (model) innovation through application of emergent technologies)?

How to employ IT to better manage business processes (with particular emphasis on administrative and clinical processes in the healthcare sector)?

How mature are organisations in managing digital innovation in business processes (with particular emphasis on citizen-facing processes in the government sector)?

The UGentMIS professors will help the PhD student to define a PhD research topic related to one of these themes.

Our research approach is pragmatic, encompassing both design-based research and mixed methods research. Reference disciplines include Business/Management/Organisational studies, Computer Science, and Information Systems. The PhD student will be trained (as part of the UGent doctoral training programme) in research methodology and domain-specific topics, and the UGentMIS professors will help the candidate to develop an appropriate research plan.

UGentMIS research is often performed in close collaboration with organisations, like for instance, VDMbee, PwC, ISACA, UZGent, Maria Middelares, Collibra, City of Ghent.

Given the multidisciplinary focus and applied nature of our research bridging business and IT, UGentMIS is actively searching for 2nd Master Business Engineering students (all fields of study) or Master students of Complementary Studies in Business Economics, with a background in engineering or computer science. Expressions of interest by other students (e.g., Computer Science, Informatics, Applied Informatics, Business Informatics, Engineering) of Ghent University or other universities (Flanders and abroad) are welcome.

The PhD position will be opened once one or more suitable candidates have expressed their interest.

If interested, contact me at
or just talk to me when you see me at the Faculty (open door policy).

Kind regards
Prof. dr. Geert Poels


By Geert Poels

Geert Poels is head of UGentMIS, which he founded in 2005. He is Professor of Management Information Systems (since October 1, 2012) and member of the professorial staff of the Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University (since October 1, 2002). He is member of the University Research Council. He also teaches and directs master dissertation research at IC Institute (Beersel, Belgium). Within UGentMIS he coordinates the Enterprise Modelling research cluster. His personal research and research together with academic scholars, companies, post-doctoral researchers, PhD students and Master students relates to six lines of research: (1) Design of a Business Process Architecture Description Language – with colleagues from UCLM, Spain; (2) Automated modelling of User Stories and Behaviour-Driven Design scenarios – with colleagues from SLU, United States & UGent PhD students Abhimanyu Gupta and Anis Amna; (3) Ontological analysis and design of Value Models and their integration into Enterprise Architecture – with colleagues from The Open University of The Netherlands and UNIBZ, Italy; in collaboration with the Dutch company VDMbee; and with Master students from IC Institute; (4) Redesigning the conceptual model of COBIT for IT Governance – with colleagues from Antwerp Management School; in collaboration with PwC and ISACA & UGent PhD student Dirk Steuperaert; (5) Enterprise Modelling for tactical information systems design, the 'informal enterprise', and capability management – with professors Renata Petrevska and Mijalche Santa from the universities of Bitola/Prilep and Skopje, Macedonia, respectively, and with Master students from IC Institute; (6) Enterprise Modelling for digital innovation – with UGent/VUB post-doctoral researcher Michaël Verdonck, UGent Master students and colleagues from the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. Apart from these research lines, Geert Poels supervises UGent PhD research on digital marketplaces (Thomas Derave), technology disruption (Patrick Luyts), cybersecurity (Hossein Abroshan, Steve Ahouanmenou), enterprise systems (Adnan Kraljic, Tarik Kraljic), and GDPR (Georgios Georgiadis, Abdel-Jaouad Aberkane). In the period 2005-2020 he was promoter of 13 completed PhD research projects (11 at UGent and 2 at KU Leuven), while currently he is promoter of 11 ongoing PhD projects. Mid 2020 he has 126 publications listed in Web of Science with an h-index of 15. His Scopus h-index is 19. His Google Scholar h-index is 32 with over 3600 citations recorded.

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