Tesis durant el mes d'octubre a la URL

Universitat Ramon LlullJoan Rodon Mòdol, Elsa Genovè Corominas, Maria Luisa Pereira Soares i Jorge Juan Zavala Vinces s'han convertit en doctors i doctores durant el mes d'octubre a la Universitat Ramon Llull: 



-Joan Rodon Mòdol (ESADE) Exploring standardization and integration in the implementation of industry inter-organizational information systems: a case study in the seaport of Barcelona, amb calificació Excel.lent Cum Laude, ha estat dirigida per Joan Antoni Pastor Collado:


This dissertation presents an interpretive study of standardization and integration processes related to the implementation of an industry inter-organizational information system (IOIS) in the Seaport of Barcelona. This thesis adopts an ensemble view of the IOIS. First, from this perspective an IOIS is in constant flux as it is implemented and used in practice. Thus implementation becomes path dependent in the sense that existing systems influence the implementation choices and paths. Second, the implementation is being partly materially determined and partly socially constructed. That is, implementation may be viewed as socio-technical change processes that evolved around the implementation of the industry IOIS.


The objective of this thesis is to inquire into the socio-technical nature of IOIS implementation process and identify theoretical and practical issues that can provide a relevant explanation of the implementation dynamics. Based on an in-depth interpretive case study, which is combined with actor-network theory and grounded theory, I conduct an analysis of the implementation process and formalize a set of theoretical and practical implications. The first main theme of this work has been the standardization effort that has taken place before and during the implementation of the industry IOIS. The second main theme is related with the integration of the adopters’ pre-existing systems with the industry IOIS.


The contributions that arise from this research have implications for research. Firstly, it adds to the limited but growing group of researchers that have focused on the processual and socio-technical nature of IOISs, as well as adds to the factor-based IOIS literature by detailing how and why some of these factors become important. Secondly, it contributes to longitudinal IS research by providing a deeper contextual understanding of the processes of adaptation and change that underlie IOIS implementation. Finally, it contributes to IOIS standardization literature by establishing links between the process and stakeholder models.


On the other hand, this thesis has pragmatic legitimacy as it may serve as a helpful guide from which to improve practice. Firstly, this work confirms the dynamism of the stakes during the standardization process and highlights that the stakeholders that participate in the standardization have a range of stakes that vary among their nature and drive their attitude towards the process. Thus a continuous identification of participants’ stakes appears to be very important. Secondly, this thesis shows that IOIS management has to place emphasis and devote resources not only to design, predict future conditions, and develop strategies and actions to meet those predictions, but also to pay attention and understand the unexpected events and emergent changes that arise during the use of the IOIS. Finally, IOIS implementation requires management to respond in order to reinforce or attenuate the emergent changes. That is, the IOIS management cannot only be conceived as predefined planned intervention, but also as a form of reaction and response to situational demands and others’ behavior. In addition, this thesis provides a set of maneuvers that may guide managers and practitioners involved in the implementation of IOISs.

KEYWORDS: Inter-organizational information systems, implementation, standardization, integration, grounded theory, actor-network theory, longitudinal study, interpretive research


-Elsa Genovè Corominas (IQS) Self-assembling peptide scaffolds as extracellular matrix analogs and their application in tissue engineering and regenerative biology, amb calificació Excel.lent Cum Laude, ha estat dirigida per Carles Semino:


In this Thesis, a new designed biomaterial made out of short repetitive amphiphilic peptide sequence AcN-RADARADARADARADA-CONH2 (RAD16-I) that self-assembles forming nanofiber networks (hydrogel scaffold) has been used as synthetic extracellular matrix analog for cell maintenance, proliferation and differentiation. This peptide has been functionalized with biological active motifs from extracellular matrix proteins including laminin-1 and collagen IV. The prototypic self-assembling peptide scaffold RAD16-I and its biologically active derivatives have been characterized and tested using several cellular systems such as human aortic endothelial cells (HAEC), mature hepatocytes and a putative liver progenitor cell line, Lig-8. The proteolysis of the peptide RAD16-I has been evaluated using trypsin as a proteolytic enzyme and the resulting fragments have been analyzed by MALDI-TOF and AFM. Moreover the second generation of RAD16-I-based biomaterials have been tested using HAEC and mature hepatocytes. With these systems we have shown that the development of a biomimetic matrix enhances as well as maintain tissue-specific functions. In particular, the results obtained in cell differentiation, proliferation and maintenance of cell function using the synthetic self-assembling peptide matrices, are comparable with the results obtained using natural biological matrices counterparts (Collagen-I and Matrigel). This indicates that our extracellular matrix analogs can replace the use of naturally-derived materials and suggests the use of these smart biomaterials with instructive capacity for cells in therapeutics. Moreover, the use of the self-assembling peptide RAD16-I in the recreation of a stem-cell niche proved to be highly efficient. We were able to control stem-cell kinetics (from symmetric to assymetric) inducing functional differentiation while maintaining a small proportion of undifferentiated cells. This striking results clearly indicate that we were able to obtain a stem-cell niche where primitive cells (Lig-8) undergo differentiation acquiring mature hepatic functions. We have developed a biomaterial platform that can be used for functionalization with innumerable biomolecules, with capacity to induce biological processes like differentiation, control of proliferation, metabolic function, etc. These biomaterials will have a strong impact in therapeutics and regenerative biology.

KEYWORDS: Biomaterials, tissue engineering, self-assembling peptides, endothelial cells, hepatocytes, liver progenitor cells



-Maria Luisa Pereira Soares (FPCEEB - Psicologia) Contribuições da investigação de díades de terapeutas e clientes portugueses, amb calificació Excel.lent Cum Laude, ha estat dirigida per Lluís Botella García del Cid i Marina Serra de Lemos:

In order to increase the development of the process and the therapeutic result at a national level, this study observed several characteristics of the therapist and the client, as well as some sources of the process and the therapeutic result: i) the style of therapist and the style of client, degree of resistance and motivation of the client for therapy; at the level of the therapeutic process observed the ii) therapeutic alliance and, at the level of the therapeutic result, iii) the assessment of the general well-being and the condition of sintomatology of the client. The sample is composed by 39 dyads of therapists and clients evaluated in these dimensions at four moments of the process, on the 1st, 3rd, 5th and on the 8th session.


The results are presented through three studies. The first study delineates the statistical way of the different instruments used (“Determine the statistical comfort”). The second study observed “the initial meeting of dyads” and looked for initial factors that could explain the earlier drop outs of the clients. Finally, it was possible to elaborate a case study of only one therapist who congregated 19 clients, entitled “the champion therapist”, which allowed to know better the style and the therapeutic effects of a single therapist. The results suggest interesting considerations concerning the style of therapist and the style of the client. Moreover, to help the therapist in early stages of formation to recognize his style, to perceive his compatibility and levels of higher success with certain style of clients can improve his performance with a number of clients. Identify, be Flexible and Adjust (I.F.A.) each style to each client will have to be a guiding principle of psychotherapy. Of the knowledge of this group of clients, it equally results to know that the feminine gender and externalised profile of clients seemed to remain more in the therapeutic process than the masculine and the internalized profile. Also, identify the levels of self-determination for therapy in the client could increase the therapeutic success and a strong therapeutic alliance is a good predictor of a high-quality outcome in therapy. In the scope of the therapeutic results, evidence that emerges is that in face of a clinical sample without severe pathology, the CORE-OM could be used as a single assessment instrument, since that it disclosed similar pointers of the therapeutic result as the SCL90R. It is concluded that the evaluation of the therapeutic result must be implemented as regular practice in the psychotherapy and that the 3rd and 5th sessions seemed to be moments of turn over for the clients, and should be considered therapeutic moments of redefinition for the therapist.


KEYWORDS. Assessment of psychotherapy, style of therapist and client, motivation for the therapy, alliance, process and therapeutic result.



-Jorge Juan Zavala Vinces (ESADE) Individual strategic thinking as a facilitator of absorptive capacity: an examination on new product development projects, amb calificació Excel.lent Cum Laude, ha estat dirigida per Eduard Bonet Guinó:

This dissertation attempted to uncover the individual strategic thinking elements proposed, but not empirically tested, by Bonn (2001, 2005) and Liedtka (1998); and the relationships between those elements and its role as facilitaor of the team’s absorptive capacity – as reconceptualized by Zahra and George (2002) – that a team develops within the context of NPD project.


For that purpose this dissertation used a qualitative approach within the case-study methodology framework. The study comprise four case studies amidst New Product Development (NPD) projects in four Latin American subsidiaries of an American Multi-National Company (MNC) within the pharmaceutical industry. Using Yin’s (2003a, 2003b) methodological approach to case studies as framework, and Glaser and Strauss’s (1967) and Strauss and Corbin (1998) constant comparative method from the grounded theory as the data analysis tool, this dissertation deepened in the elements of individual strategic thinking and their relationship with Zahra and George’s (2002) Potential Absorptive Capacity (knowledge acquisition and knowledge assimilation) and Realized Absorptive Capacity (knowledge transformation and knowledge application).


This dissertation found that the main elements related to individual strategic thinking were: individual creativity, holistic perspective, and vision. This finding supports Bonn’s (2005) model on the topic. Those elements were found to have a role as facilitators (among other elements) of Realized Absorptive Capacity proposed by Zahra and George (2002) and in turn, as an enabler of NPD project’s success improvement.


From a theoretical point of view, this dissertation also contributed with a framework of knowledge flows as present in a NPD project that interrelate individual strategic thinking elements, and other elements uncovered by the study, with the team’s absorptive capacity facilitating the NPD success.


From a practical stand point, this dissertation provided the possibility for managers to pay attention on a systematic development of the individual strategic thinking skill through its elements, among the members of a team in charge of a NPD project, in particular within the pharmaceutical industry.


KEYWORDS: Absorptive capacity, strategic thinking, knowledge management, new product development projects, case study, qualitative approach.


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