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Centre for Digital Business

Do you know your wearables from your nearables? How could you use augmented reality or virtual reality  in your digital business? Are you up to date with jargon like CX (customer experience), growth hacking or responsive web design? Furthermore, how ready is your business for new emerging digital technologies?

But how do we value Digital business? It underpins startups, SMEs and global organisations. It is clear that it drives economic growth, creates jobs and even makes sure our shopping arrives on time!

Is your organisation ready to be the next big thing? Here, within our centre we know digital business is more than company websites. It is now about  transforming business models and data that will drive your organisation forward.

What does the Centre for Digital Business do?

Technological change challenges any business. Some do not have skilled people. Many are not equipped to complete in digital environments. Other may not actually feel need to change. Recently, the High Street has shown how even larger organisations fail. Big names like HMV, Kodak and Thomas Cook have failed to evolve business models and align organisational and IT strategies. This failure to acknowledge changing digital technologies means many big players have been caught out. So, what hope is there for independents, startups or SMEs?

Our award-winning centre provides support to the local business community and beyond. Knowledge Transfer Partnerships, hosting of social media Boot-camps, running commercial one day courses or strategic research internships through our MSc students are ways we work with local and global business.

How can we help businesses become digital?

Our centre's international research reputation focuses on supporting digital businesses through both national and international projects. Furthermore, our knowledge is also available through free online resources such as MOOCs, blog posts, case studies, conference papers and ultimately the courses we offer within Salford Business School. Consequently, we believe we are transforming lives of individuals free of charge through a community for learning and enquiry that helps organisations transform operations and harness the power of digital business.

So email us now and find out how we can help. Or why not follow us on Twitter @DBcentresalford to find out even more?

Hydro-X

KTP: Hydro-X

Funding detail: ESRC
Duration: 2017-2019
Grant: £38,000
Centre member(s): Alex Fenton, Marie Griffiths, and Aleksej Heinze
Research: To adapt and develop the UK’s leading digital portal for  health and safety training management (HSTM).


Sigma Consulting Solutions Ltd

KTP: Sigma Consulting Solutions Ltd

Funding detail: ESRC
Duration: 2014-2016
Grant: £122,345
Centre member(s): David Kreps, Maria Griffiths and Maria Kutar
Research: To develop research techniques to better identify client needs and  a process and toolkit to identify which tools and techniques, in what order, are best suited to a particular UX client profile and project and enhance the client relationship in terms of UX and speed of delivery and management.


Pennine Telecom

KTP: Pennine Telecoms

Funding detail: KTP (TSB)
Duration: 2013-2015
Grant: £79,721
Centre member(s): Marie Griffiths, Tahir Rashid
Research: To embed a strategy of cross-channel sales and marketing, concentrating on a  seamless approach to the client through all available channels.
Dissemination: Ongoing


Tameside Housing

KTP: Tameside Housing

Funding detail: KTP
Duration: 2012 - 2013
Grant: £60,577
Centre member(s): Marie Griffiths
Research: To bring empty homes back into use through the development of an innovative and sustainable emptyhomes  engagement strategy.


KTP: Dynamic Digital Campaigns Management System

Funding detail: KTP (TSB)
Duration: 2011-2013
Grant: £81,000
Centre member(s): Gordon Fletcher, Aleksej Heinze, Andrew Goudie
Research: Development of a Dynamic Campaigns dashboard logic and its  implementation.
Dissemination: Ongoing


KTP: E-Law System Development and Implementation

Funding detail: KTP (TSB/ESRC)
Duration: 2011 - 2013
Grant: £81,000
Centre member(s): Aleksej Heinze, Gordon Fletcher, Yiannis Polychronakis
Research: Development of E-Law concept and infrastructure.
Dissemination: Ongoing.


Beta Group Ltd

KTP: Beta Group Ltd

Funding detail: KTP
Duration: 2009 - 2011
Grant: £118,001
Centre member(s): Marie Griffiths, Aleksej Heinze
Research: Back office operations review and ERP solution refinement.
Dissemination:Ofoegbu,    AC, Griffiths, M and Heinze, A 2011, Themes and challenges for service management solutions in Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) , in: UK Academy for Information Systems 16th Annual Conference 2011, 11 - 13th March 2011, Oriel College, Universityof    Oxford.  

Griffiths, M., Heinze, A. and Ofoegbu A. C. (2012). The real SAP Business One cost: a case study of ERP adoption in an SME. International Journal of Management Practice (IJMP), Forthcoming. Special Issue on: "Challenges and Issues of Technology Adoption in Small Businesses – Beyond the Rhetoric" Forthcoming.  


KTP: Creation of Online Interactive Tool for Point-of-sale Materials

Funding detail: KTP (TSB)
Duration: 2009-2011
Grant: £79,000
Centre member(s): Gordon Fletcher, Maria Kutar
Research: Develop the POS Store system - An online design and ordering systems for Point  ofSale materials.


Cetus Solutions Ltd

KTP: Cetus Solutions Ltd

Funding detail: KTP
Duration: 2009
Grant: £136,852
Centre member(s): Aleksej Heinze, Marie Griffiths
Research: Enterprise 2.0 - Customer Relationship Networking and impact on its use inbusiness.
Dissemination:Griffiths , M, Heinze, A, Light, B, Kiveal, P and Sethi, T 2010, Facebook, YouTube, MySpace: can Web 2.0 social networking sites nudge the boardroom – the evolution of CRN 2.0 research agenda? ,in: UK Academy  for Information Systems 15th Annual Conference 2010 “Information Systems: Past, Present and Looking to the Future” , 23rd - 24th March 2010, Oriel College, University of Oxford.

Mid-Sized Business Leaders

Mid-Sized Business Leaders

Duration: 2017 - ongoing
Grant: HEIF internal funding  
Centre member(s): Marie Griffiths and Gordon Fletcher
Research: The project aims to establish a sustainable long-term partnership between SBS and MSB Leaders to fuel mid-sized business growth through better board performance, by developing a national leadership framework, comparative performance index and executive education packages. The index will be underpinned by various sources but ultimately it will be based upon the findings of a comprehensive on-going survey reporting the opinions and collective voices from UK board members. Over 600 publications have informed this research
Dissemination: This is a new industry partnership, http://www.msbleaders.com


Word of Mouth Mammogram e-Network

Word of Mouth Mammogram e-Network

Duration: 2014 - ongoing
Grant: Various funding sources 
Centre member(s): Marie Griffiths and Alex Fenton
Research: The development of a hub for every woman who has been invited for breast screening and wants to know what it’s all about. The team is multidisciplinary including academics, radiographers, practitioners and patients. The hub was co-designed and enables a conversation to be had between women on our breast screening forum and practitioners from the NHS breast screening service as well as providing valuable written information, videos and images. The team are researching digital health, social media and health practitioner practices and co-design.
Dissemination: The findings of this multi-disciplinary team are far reaching, they include but are not limited to journal papers, book chapter, posters, blog posts,  the radiography team won Radiographer Team of the Year.  We have also run SoMe workshops with practitioners across the UK, http://wommen.org.uk


Joint European Masters programme in Search and Social Media Marketing (JEMSS)

Joint European Masters programme in Search and Social Media Marketing (JEMSS)

Funding detail: EU
Duration: 2013-2016
Grant:€384,859
Centre member(s): Aleksej Heinze, Gordon Fletcher and Tahir Rashid
Research: Identification of European needs for Digital and Social Media Marketing and developing a book, Massive Open Online Learning Course (MOOC) as well as a Joint masters in Digital and Social Media Marketing. The project already succeeded in developing a new Msc Digital Marketing programme now offered at Salford Business School.
Dissemination: http://mastersindigitalmarketing.org


Passport To Trade 2.0

Passport to Trade 2.0

Funding detail: EU
Duration: 2011 - 2013
Grant: £262,000
Centre member(s): Aleksej Heinze
Research: Identification of European business culture in 31 countries in particular the use of social media and student placements.
Dissemination: http://businessculture.org/


DDL Project: Identity Mapping for Digital Identity (ESRC)

Funding detail: ESRC
Duration: 2012
Grant: £2,162
Centre member(s): Maria Kutar, Gordon Fletcher, Marie Griffiths
Research: Exploratory research to develop a systematic methodology for identifying digitalidentity.
Dissemination: Ongoing


DDL Project: Identity Mapping for Digital Identity

Funding detail: Research Bidding Support
Duration: 2010
Grant: £3,000
Centre member(s): Maria Kutar, Gordon Fletcher, Marie Griffiths
Research: Exploratory research to develop a systematic methodology foridentifying digital identity.
Dissemination: Ongoing


IBL Informed Teaching: taking Salford students out of the classroom and onto the streets, into the libraries and onto the net

Funding detail: Centre for Inquiry-based Learning in the Arts and Social Sciences (University of Sheffield)
Grant: £3,950
Centre member(s): Maria Kutar, Marie Griffiths
Research: Griffiths, M, Kutar, M and Wood,J 2010, 'Introducing digital literacy skills through IBL: A comparative study of UG and PG business information systems students' , Italics, 9 (2)


Innovation Bazaars

Funding detail: University of Salford
Duration: 2009 - 2010
Grant: £10,000
Centre member(s): Gordon Fletcher, Aleksej Heinze, Ben Light, Alison Adam
Research: Development of innovation bazaar concept asa forum for community open innovation.
Dissemination: Ongoing including input into papers about SF prototyping.


Evaluation of Online Research Communities - Virtual Surveys Ltd with Professor Elaine Ferneley

Funding detail: University of Salford staff placement
Duration: 6 months during 2008
Grant: £1,500
Centre member(s): Aleksej Heinze
Research: Identification of motivational typology driving onlinemarket research communities participation.
Dissemination: Ferneley, E, Heinze, A and Child, P 2009, Research 2.0: Improving participation in online research communities , in: European Conference in Information Systems, 2009, Verona, Italy.
Ferneley, E, Heinze, A and Child,P 2009, Research 2.0: encouraging engagement in online market research communities , in: UK Academy for Information Systems (UKAIS), 2009, Oxford.


Evaluation of Manchester & Salford Enterprise Culture, Engagement & Support Pilots

Funding detail: Manchester City Council and Salford City Council
Duration: 4 months
Grant: £10,000
Centre member(s): Aleksej Heinze
Research: Evaluation of enterprise culture development projects inManchester and Salford.
Dissemination: Vasilieva, E, Avramenko, A, Heinze, A, MacLean, C, Rouse, J and Crompton, H 2008, Building bridges: Manchester Salford enterprise initiative. Enterprise support and engagement in deprived communities pilots: final evaluation report and recommendations towards a model for developing enterprise culture in deprived communities, ProjectReport, University of Salford.


Search and Social Media Marketing Industry

Funding detail: Vice Chancellor Enterprise Development Fund
Duration: 2008 - 2009
Grant: £1,800
Centre member(s): Aleksej Heinze
Research: Professionalisation of the Search and Social Media Marketing industry.
Dissemination: Heinze, A and Wells, S 2009, Open enrolment programmes at Salford Business School: challenges and opportunities , in: Fifth Education in a Changing Environment Conference Critical Voices, Critical Times ,September 2009, University of Salford, Salford, Greater Manchester.

Heinze, A, Fletcher , G and Chadwick , C 2010, From search engine optimisation to search engine marketing management: development of a new area for information systems research , in: UK Academy for Information Systems 15th Annual Conference 2010 “Information Systems: Past, Present and Lookingto the Future” , 23rd - 24th March 2010, Oriel College, University of Oxford.

Heinze, A and Fletcher, G 2011, Can we make higher education relevant to the needs of the search & social media marketing industry? , in: 6th Education in a Changing Environment Conference, Creativity and Engagement in Higher Education, 6-8 July 2011, Salford, Greater Manchester.


Digital Environment Home Energy Management System (DEHEMS)

Funding detail: European Commission Framework Programme 7
Duration: 2008 - 2011
Grant: £295,000
Centre member(s): David Kreps
Research: This project is about people. We began by interviewing over1000 people in the UK and Bulgaria about their energy consumption. Many of them then joined the project to help us design the equipment that would help meet their needs in terms of monitoring the energy they consumed. The final goal being to enable people to reduce their household energy consumption andcut the cost of running their homes. The project has become increasingly relevant to the lives of all of us. Energy prices have increased dramatically since we started work on DEHEMS in 2008 and it seems safe to assume that that this will continue in the long term.
Dissemination:Kreps, D. 2010, Introducing Eco-Masculinities: How a masculine discursive subject approach to the Individual Differences Theory of Gender and IT impacts an environmental informatics project, in: AMCIS 2010 Proceedings, (Americas Conference on Information Systems) AIS, Lima, Peru, p.277. Conference details:Nominated for Best Paper.


Scoping Study for the Arts and Humanities Research Council

Funding detail: AHRC
Duration: 2009 - 2010
Grant: £10,000
Centre member(s): David Kreps
Research: As part of the developing Research Councils UK (RCUK) Digital Economy Programme the Arts andHumanities Research Council (AHRC) has collaborated with the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPRSC) to commission a study to review the capital needs to support leading edge research using new and related media technologies. The goals of the study are to broadly assess the current situation,identify any gaps in provision and comment on modes of support provision. Specifically, regarding the latter, to consider whether there is a need for the large-scale provision of facilities, infrastructure and equipment for particular communities over existing modes that are tied to individual researchprojects.
Dissemination: Report to AHRC


Evaluation of HEFCW's Third Mission

Duration: 2008
Grant: £29,000
Centre member(s): Aleksej Heinze
Research: Evaluation of HEFCW’s Third mission and its impact in Wales.
Dissemination: http://www.hefcw.ac.uk/documents/publications/external_reports_and_studies/3%20mission%20fund%20full%20report%20Oct%2009.pdf


Enterprise Cultural Heritage

Funding detail: Interreg IVC
Grant: £1,206,734
Centre member(s): Aleksej Heinze
Research: Study of innovation triple helix: universities, policy makers and commercial operators located in University City Regions in Europe (regionswith over 100k student of population).
Dissemination: http://www.knowledgecities.eu


Innovation Policy in University City Regions (INNOPOLIS)

Funding detail: Interreg IVC
Grant: £1,206,734
Centre member(s): Aleksej Heinze
Research: Study of innovation triple helix: universities, policy makers and commercial operators located in University City Regions in Europe (regionswith over 100k student of population).
Dissemination: http://www.knowledgecities.eu


The Big Issue In The North

The Big Issue In The North (BIITN)

Funding detail: HEIF
Duration: Forthcoming placement of 10 days
Grant: Staff grant of £1,500
Centre member(s): Marie Griffiths
Research: This is a scoping exercise for the BIITN. BIITN are aware thatthe sales of print media have declined over the past two decades and that this is accelerating as more media are available online. The organisation has been radically affected by this. The research aims to target BIITN readers who are generally from social groups ABC1, more likely to be women than men,and largely over 40, who have grown up with the street vendor concept. We aim to continue meeting this target market, but additional new audience sectors will also be explored, through raising an awareness of the brand via digital media.


Developing a New Business Model Due to Disruptive Technologies -  eDiscrimination in the North West

Funding detail: European Social Fund
Duration:1 year project Jan-Dec 2007
Grant: £85,000
Centre member(s): David Kreps
Research: Examined the accessibility of jobs websites both nationally and in the North West of the UK to disabled people using assistive technologies to access the web. Findings were that none were particularly accessible.
Dissemination: Kreps, D & Wheeler, P (Dec 07) 'Language, Technology & the Body: Critical Research into Disability, Impairment &Web Accessibility for UK JobSeekers' paper at International Conference on Information Systems (ICIS) Dec 2007, Montreal, Canada.

Wheeler, P & Kreps, D (2008) 'User Testing is Not a Luxury' Electronic Markets - The International Journal Routledge, London 18(4), 324-332.

The Centre for Digital Business continues the work of the former Centre for Information Systems, Organisations and Society (ISOS) and is one of the top performing research centres of Salford Business School.

The UK-wide Research Assessment Exercise (RAE 2008) outcomes showed that 75% of the research activities of the former Centre was at international level,with 25% being classified as world leading.

The Centre for Digital Business has continued this work with an expanded vision bringing together information systems research with strategy and innovation, entrepreneurship as well as digital media.

Continuing Professional Development (CPD), Undergraduate and Postgraduate study at the Centre for Digital Business

Centre staff are also involved in teaching on the following CPD, undergraduate and postgraduate courses:

PhD study at the Centre for Digital Business

If you would like to study for a PhD in the Centre for Digital Business, look at the research expertise of our members and contact them to informally discuss your research proposal. The postgraduate research application should follow the University of Salford’s guidelines - see how to apply for a Business PhD here. We have also written a guide on how to write a research proposal available to download using this link.

Dr Marie Griffiths, Dr Gordon Fletcher and Dr Aleksej Heinze

t: 0044 (0)161 295 4237 // e: sbs-digitalCentre@salford.ac.uk

Digital Transformation

Our research themes at the Centre for Digital Business reflect our membership; our membership therefore reflects an eclectic attitude in what we focus on. It is safe to say that our interest is all things digital that enable and have consequences on digital business transformation, from entrepreneurs,  to  start-ups, to SMEs, to mid-sized businesses, all the way up to multi-nationals. See your publications and our projects for a flavour of the research we undertake. We are curious about technology and how it impacts on both business and society and that shapes our research, see below for some key areas we research in.

Centre for Digital Business Research Themes

The Team

Dr Marie Griffiths

Digital Technologies

Dr Gordon Fletcher

Digital Anthropology

Dr Aleksej Heinze

Digital Marketing

Dr David Kreps

Philosophy of IS

Mr Kostas Chaldoupis

Additive Manufacturing 3D Printing

Dr Yun Chen

Digital Business

Mr Richard Dron

Enterprise & Innovation

Mr Alex Fenton

Sport & Digital Business

Miss Sophie Iredale

Digital Marketing

Dr Suzanne Kane

IT Management & Education

Ms Jenny Kanellopoulou

Digital & Media Industries

Dr Maria Kutar

Information Systems

Miss Jessica Muirhead

Information Systems & UX

Dr Mostafa Mohamad

IS & Mobile Computing

Dr Christos Papanagnou

Big Data, Supply Chain Mgt

Dr Yiannis Polychronakis

Supply Chain & Project Mgt

Mr Chris Procter

Project Management, Education

Dr Tahir Rashid

Digial & Islamic Marketing

Dr Peter Reeves

Political & Brand Marketing

Dr Stelios Sapountzis

Project Management