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Bled eConference 2023 : 36th Bled eConference - Digital Economy and Society: The Balancing Act for Digital Innovation in Times of Instability


When Jun 25, 2023 - Jun 28, 2023
Where Bled, Slovenia
Submission Deadline Mar 6, 2023
Categories    information systems   business informatics   doctoral consortium   digital transformation

Call For Papers

The Bled eConference has been shaping electronic interactions since 1988. Implementation of novel information technologies leads enterprises and governments towards digital transformation. Digital transformation will not be successful if sustainable aspects of human and social development will not be considered. European Commission emphasizes that in the future, competitiveness will be dependent on the ability to move towards sustainability, resource efficiency and the ability to exploit the advantages of digital technologies. In the context of a digital society, the implementation of digital technologies and novel solutions to achieve higher efficiency, effectiveness and competitive advantage is insufficient. Society calls for different economic models; more responsible, righteous and less exploitative. Digital technologies should be used to implement and design business models, which will be sensitive for sustainable development in all aspects – economic, environmental and social (triple bottom line). The community of Bled eConference aims to remain an active contributor in shaping economic and social growth, with environmental sensibility and thus raising the well-being of citizens around the world.

A small supportive community offers the opportunity to benefit from the expertise of esteemed researchers;
A fully-refereed Research Track and research in progress track, devoted to researchers in all aspects of digital transformation;
Doctoral Consortium, offering students to present their ongoing master's and PhD study results;
ePrototype Students Bazaar, offering students opportunities to present innovative e- or m-Business or Internet of Things ideas, models, prototypes and apps;
A Business and Government Panel Track which attracts eminent business and government leaders from Europe, the Americas and Asia-Pacific;
Business, Government and Academic Workshops and Meetings offering unparalleled opportunities to discuss share and learn with colleagues from around the world;
EU projects dissemination meetings; enabling project partners to connect with other similar projects and to disseminate results to a wider community.

Bled’s highlights:

The conference is shaping electronic interactions since 1988
Strong relationships and cooperation with journals
Coaching of doctoral students – Doctoral Consortium and Graduate Students ePrototype Bazaar
Research in progress and poster presentations
Special interest tracks (besides the regular track)
We invite submissions in all areas of research, teaching, and business related to the Digitial Economy and Society with special emphasis on digital transformation.

Submitted papers should make a significant contribution to theory, knowledge, and practice in the areas of information management, information systems, information technology, and information resources management. Papers based on both quantitative and qualitative research methodologies, in all traditional as well as new areas of Management Information Systems, Business Informatics, Computer Science, or Technology Management are accepted.

Conference chair: Andreja Pucihar, University of Maribor, Slovenia

Conference co-chair: Mirjana Kljajić Borštnar, University of Maribor, Slovenia

36th Bled eConference Research track chair: Guido Ongena, HU University of Applied Sciences Utrecht, Netherlands

36th bled eConference Research track co-chair: Marikka Heikkilä, University of Turku, Finland

We offer several special interest tracks:

Digital Health (Track Co-Chairs: Nilmini Wickramasinghe, Swinburne University of Technology and Epworth HealthCare, Australia and Juergen Seitz, Baden-Wuerttemberg Cooperative State University, Germany):

In 2020 the world was hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. During this pandemic the role of digital health, its benefits, potentials and opportunities to extend and support any time, anywhere care delivery became apparent like never before. Now as we return to a new normal, patients and clinicians alike have new expectations and opinions about digital health. We want to unpack the impacts, implications and lessons learned about these digital transformations around healthcare delivery. In particular, we focus on the role that e- and m- technologies can play in finding the balance between societal costs on the one hand and the empowerment and well-being of citizens/patients on the other. Moreover, we look at all healthcare stakeholders and how technology changes their role. Key questions to explore include: Can we find ways to organize healthcare closer to patients’ needs, which are also of high quality, less intrusive, and at lower costs? How is digitization changing healthcare processes? Can data analytics, the Internet of Things, and quantified self-help in this effort? Does digitization of healthcare mean loss of personalisation and the human touch? And how do we safeguard that the data are not abused?

Digital Ethics (Track Co-Chair: Roger Bons, FOM Hochschule, Germany, Johan Versendaal, HU University of Applied Sciences Utrecht and Open University of the Netherlands, Netherlands and Koen Smit, HU University of Applied Sciences Utrecht, The Netherlands)

Technology is not neutral. Ethical values are in many ways included in product and service design. Digital technology implementation has implicit and explicit effects on its users, developers, and all its stakeholders. Apps may nudge you in a certain direction, default options may show provider preferred choices, and large text files can obscure what is really the message when e.g. accepting cookies and approving forward license agreements. Applications of Artificial Intelligence may easily violate stakeholder values: usage of privacy-sensitive data, usage of incomplete and biased training sets resulting in unexpected decisions, a tendency of ossification, and more. In addition, pandemic times may easily propagate a ‘more pragmatic approach’ to being ethical. At the same GDPR and other legislation increasingly protect consumers and citizens; also the field of Digital Ethics shows that carefully taking an ethical perspective can increase citizen inclusion, democracy, autonomy, and other values. Value-sensitive design and implication analysis of technology increasingly receive attention. However, many questions on how to optimize the ethical perspective in digital technology design and implementation remain to be investigated and researched. This track invites submissions of research papers on matters like (yet not limited to):
• Exploratory research on the ethical perspective of digital technology implementation and digital transformation
• Methods, tooling, and techniques taking the ethical perspective into account
• Explanatory factors for ethically successful digital technology design and implementation
• A co-perspective on IS/IT scientific theory and the body of knowledge on ethics

AI & Data Science (Track Co-Chair: Guido Ongena, HU University of Applied Sciences Utrecht, Netherlands and Sanda Martinčić Ipšić, University of Rijeka, Croatia):

Propelled by computational power, the availability of (big and unstructured) data, major advancements in machine intelligence, and unprecedented speeds at which analytics need to be generated and delivered, a wealth of new questions and opportunities arise in creating value for governmental bodies and businesses. As organizations transform into data and analytics-centric enterprises, more research is needed not only on the technical aspects of analytics such as data science algorithms, and computing infrastructure but also on various other organizational issues in the business analytics context (e.g. managerial, strategic, leadership, data governance, and inter-organizational issues). For this track, we invite technical, theoretical, design science, pedagogical and behavioural research as well as novel implementations of data analytics & visualization for varied data (or sources) such as sensors or Internet of Things (IoT) data, text, multimedia, business operations, clickstreams, and user-generated content. We welcome papers examining a wide range of contexts including healthcare, security, energy, marketing, supply chain, technology, service, hospitality, education, transportation, fraud prevention, and the environment.

Possible business-oriented topics of submissions include, but are not limited to:

Big Data and Business Transformation
Innovative Artifacts for Business Analytics
Data-Driven Business Modelling
Data-Driven Process Mining and Innovation
Data Strategy and Data Privacy
Social and Ethical Issues in Big Data
Social Impact of Data Science
Competences in the Era of Big Data
Data Science and Industry 4.0
Big Data Applications / Innovations
Possible technical-oriented topics of submissions include, but are not limited to instantiations of:

Data mining / Machine Learning / Deep Learning
Process mining
Data Science
Text & Multimedia analytics
Social Network (Media) Analytics
Real-time data analysis / Stream processing
Internet of Things (IoT), Sensor data analytics
Spatial data analysis / Visualization
Open Data / Data Sets

Digital Education (Track Co-Chair: Mirjana Kljajić Borštnar, University of Maribor, Slovenia, Matt Glowatz, University College Dublin, Ireland, and Esther van der Stappen, Avans University of Applied Sciences, Netherlands):

Education has been changing as technology allows for many new possibilities and this change has accelerated by the Covid-19 pandemic since a considerable share of education moved online. New modes of learning and instruction emerged, such as the hybrid virtual classroom. Educators rapidly developed their digital and pedagogical skills to deliver their courses remotely. Challenges related to motivation, accessibility, and well-being emerged.
Besides the consequences of the pandemic, education has been facing societal challenges. New students enter educational institutions with highly developed digital skills. Part-time learning, continuous learning, and immediate-on-the-spot knowledge acquisition change the educational playground. Electronic learning platforms bring together to practice, teachers, scholars, and students in one environment. On top of new approaches to learning and teaching, the digital society requires new knowledge, and new technical and soft skills.
How does this change education, what are the good practices, and how can research and education come together in leveraging new models of learning and teaching? How can we adapt the curricula of the old disciplines to the new reality and how to create curricula for emerging disciplines? What can we collectively learn from the experiences we gained from the pandemic in remote, hybrid, and blended learning?
We encourage research contributions on the challenges of digital, blended, and hybrid education.

Smart Sustainable Cities (Track Co-chair: Hans-Dieter Zimmermann, Eastern Switzerland University of Applied Sciences, Campus St. Gallen, Switzerland, Pascal Ravesteijn, University of Applied Sciences Utrecht, Netherlands, and Matthias Baldauf, Eastern Switzerland University of Applied Sciences, Campus St. Gallen, Switzerland )

“The Smart City idea offers concepts and solutions for cities, communities, as well as regions to cope with current challenges occurring in the form of demographics, urbanization, climate change, resource crises, mobility challenges, global competition as well as open and participatory societies. While the early smart city concepts focused on technology first and foremost nowadays the citizens and their quality of life are the starting point for many activities. The track will focus on the utilization of any technology to contribute to the quality of life of citizens. Especially in European cities a rather small on average and often linked to further communities in a region, the track will focus on smart cities, communities as well as regions. Therefore, the track continues the eRegion tradition of the Bled eConference. We look forward to receiving papers addressing various issues of a smart city, such as strategies and frameworks, concrete solutions and cases, service and business models, benefits and challenges, as well as ethical challenges, covering all the various smart city dimensions from smart energy over smart mobility and sharing economy to smart governments and smart citizens, utilizing different methodological approaches. ”

Business Models (Track Co-Chair: Mirjana Kljajić Borštnar, University of Maribor, Slovenia, Christian Kittl, evolaris next level Research Centre, Austria and Andreja Pucihar, University of Maribor, Slovenia)

Digital transformation and implementation of digital technologies affect current business models (BM) of enterprises and societies as well as enable the development of new disruptive business models. We invite qualitative and quantitative research papers addressing different fields of BM as for example digital technologies affecting value creation, new product and service development and/or delivery, new ways of CRM, new types of networked business models, etc. We are also interested in BM innovation approaches, practices and tools used for BM innovation e.g. user involvement, open innovation, and customer-centred design.

Digital Consumer (Track Co-Chair: Marjeta Marolt, University of Maribor, Slovenia, and Hans-Dieter Zimmermann, Eastern Switzerland University of Applied Sciences, Campus St. Gallen, Switzerland)

The advancements in digital technology enable consumers to gain the necessary information to weigh their options before making a purchase decision. Through their smartphones and other devices, consumers can find the best brands, customer reviews, and pricing among others. Active consumers also voluntarily share and co-create experiences collectively with other actors with shared interests. This means that firms need to keep up with the best techniques if they want to acquire new and retain existing consumers. More specifically, the firms need to follow the consumer decision-making process, provide greater service customisation and personalisation and engage consumers in value co-production and co-creation processes. Thus, this research track aims to explore the role of smart consumers in digital strategies and digital transformation processes. We welcome different methodological approaches and look forward to receiving papers addressing various issues related, but not limited to:

Consumer purchase decision-making process identification and tracking challenges
Firm-initiated engagement activities that foster consumer co-production
Dynamic roles played by consumers in the value co-creation process
New models for smart service automation, combining data, analytical components, and physical infrastructure in unique customer offerings
Application of conversational interfaces in the purchase process
Restructured Work (Track Co-Chair: Axel Minten, German Coworking Association and FOM University of Applied Sciences, Germany, and Xander Lub, Hogeschool Utrecht, Netherlands)

Digital transformation is profoundly affecting the ways in which people contribute to societies, how they live and work, and the number and types of jobs available. While worries of widespread technological unemployment may be overstated, the impact of digital transformation on the nature of work and the skills required is very real and already upon us. Many new, productive, and rewarding forms of work and jobs are being created as part of the digital transformation, but at the same time, many jobs have disappeared, and more are likely to go into the future (Frey & Osborne, 2017). Also, the organization of work, workspace and leadership is changing in a significant way. Work constellations like coworking, remote work, home office and hybrid mixtures between those become reality in many businesses and fields of work. But not all employees benefit from those changes. The impact of digitalization on the workforce depends on technological innovations and the uptake of these new technologies but OECD estimates suggest that some 14% of workers face a high risk that their tasks will be automated. Another 32% face major changes in the tasks required in their job and, consequently, the skills they would need to do their job (Nedelkoska and Quintini, 2018). These workers will need to significantly adapt to succeed in the new digitally-enabled work environment. In this track, we invite contributions related to this re- and upskilling challenge. Possible topics include:

What are new skills in this era of digital transformation?
Who will benefit from new forms of work that became possible via digital transformation?
How can we prepare employees for new jobs or changes to existing jobs?
How can we engage employees to participate in understanding what way their organization will change and how they can reconfigure their jobs?
How do we navigate and manage the change process in the complexity of digital transformation?
How do we need to rethink leadership, management and Organization?

Decision Analytics for Business and Societal Challenges (Track Co-Chairs: Christer Carlsson, Professor, Institute for Advanced Management Systems Research and Åbo Akademi University, Finland, Pasi Luukka, Professor, LUT School of Business and Management, Finland and Doug Vogel Professor, Harbin Institute of Technology, China):

The Decision Analytics (DA) Track welcomes papers that work out emerging managerial and organizational decision-making strategies, processes, tools, technologies, services and solutions in the Digital Age. Decision Analytics focuses on decision-making processes, analytics tools and supporting technologies which include themes such as open data, big data and analytics, visual decision analytics, machine learning, explainable AI, business and service analytics, internet of things, knowledge collaboration, soft computing, logistics and supply chain management, sustainability, etc., which now are core research themes in analytics. Challenges and issues of service industries, digitalization of services, digital mobile services, smart service systems, etc. are application areas which form business and societal challenges within the Bled 2023 conference theme “Digital Economy & Society”.

Possible topics:

Analytics and decision support – new technology meets new challenges
Big data and analytics – problem areas, challenges and solutions
Case studies of analytics technologies for industry and business platforms
Data-driven services in logistics – transformation and management
Digital mobile services for everyday life
Digital services and service digitalization
Visual analytics for knowledge integration and decision support
Machine learning and predictive analytics for management support
Soft computing – theory innovations and problem-solving benefits
Research in Progress (Track Chair: Koen Smit, HU University of Applied Sciences Utrecht, The Netherlands, and Anand Sheombar, HU University of Applied Sciences Utrecht, Netherlands)

A part of the conference program will be dedicated to interactive presentations on visionary ideas, showcases and research-in-progress. Through short presentations (possibly enhanced with posters) delegates will be able to show their (preliminary) research and receive feedback in an interactive way. The authors will present their contributions as a part of the conference program. We invite submissions as short papers with possibly associated posters on topics related to the conference’s main theme and special interest themes. Accepted submissions will be enclosed in the proceedings as short papers.

Please see also other options for participation at the conference:

Professor Rene W. Wagenaar ePrototype Bazaar
Doctoral Consortium
Business Panels Workshops and Meetings

All accepted papers will be published in the Conference Proceedings (CD with ISBN and CIP number and online).

We have secured partnerships with the following journals:

Electronic Markets – The International Journal on Networked Business,
Journal of Theoretical and Applied Electronic Commerce Research
International Journal of Biomedical Engineering and Technology
International Journal of Networking and Virtual Organisations
International Journal of Organisation Design and Engineering
Organizacija – Journal of Management, Informatics and Human Resources
Journal of International Technology and Information Management
that may facilitate the publication of enhanced versions of further selected papers. Several “Special Issues” have resulted from Bled eConferences, giving the authors of selected papers ample opportunity to get rated publications as a direct and immediate result of being at Bled.

Author Guidelines for submission of Full Research Papers and Research-in-Progress Papers are available here.

More information:



Since its very beginning, it has been a conference that focuses on relevance with rigour as the underpinning foundation for contributions. This has always made the conference an excellent podium for testing out new ideas and research in progress, for senior and junior researchers alike. Not mentioning the number of partnerships between researchers that have originated at Bled and led to fruitful cooperation.

Bled also has a long tradition of coaching young researchers and students. Doctoral Consortium has been in the program since the early 1990s with the ambition to help young PhD candidates to sharpen their research proposals and to help them find international colleagues working on similar themes.

Finally, another important reason for coming to Bled is its excellent location and facilities at and near the venue. Many professional and personal friendships originate from Bled, during one of the many social events or the morning run around the lake. We are eager to meet you in 2023 to participate in the truly unique experience that makes the Bled eConference.

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