About the Institute

The Idea

Family businesses have not only been guarantors for economic stability, sustainable investment and future-oriented activity in the recent past but will continue to do so. 
Considering the importance of the research area relatively little scientific research has been conducted in the field of family owned enterprises.
It is sought to gain insights which aid the family businesses in their daily business activites and their strategic orientation as well as form a basis for potential recommendations for the legislator. With the privately funded institute we intend to prove that Hamburg is a city not only with a vibrant community but a place of academic and scientific excellence. 



The Structure


Who we are

We are an interdisciplinary institute which scientifically explores the economic, business and legal aspects of family owned businesses. The excellent, scientific education of the staff as well as the strong integration in the network of the academic community guarantees academic work on the highest level. The practical experience of all participants gained through work in the industry and consultancy will be put in a context that creates value for the businesses.

Who we are not 

We are not another institute which presents itself on the very lucrative consultancy market for family owned businesses to offer services for money. The institute itself will not conduct any consulting services. We will however conduct research activities on behalf of and financed by third parties.

Who we are not either

We do not want to lobby for family owned businesses or deal with the affairs of the family enterprise in a political context. We will, however, if requested by a third party, employ our expertise to formulate political recommendations. 

How the institute is structured

After completion of the setting up phase the institute will employ three permanent members of staff part-time, who in addition to their work at the institute will have the possibility to do a doctorate and / or work for family owned enterprises.
All administrative and clerical work will be carried out by the staff of the HWWI.
Prof. Dr. Günther Strunk as the head of the institute will ensure the integration of the research activities with the founder institutions (HSBA and HWWI).
The partners and sponsors will liase with the staff to give advice. This circle will meet regularly, discuss the progress and identify and accompany new endeavours.


» Press release about the foundation of the HIF