Master Thesis

The following note is intended to give you a better understanding of how to write a thesis in Corporate Finance.  The objective of your  thesis in general is to demonstrate that you are able to independently identify, structure and develop an economic topic and present your results in a scientific way.  Your thesis may take the form of a literature review or an empirical/theoretical research study. Note that the thesis can be written either in German or English.

The choice of topic represents an important part of your master thesis as it demonstrates your ability to identify an interesting and relevant research question. This process may take some time. It is therefore advisable to undertake an intensive research on the intended topic already prior to your registration. Suitable sources are econlit and google scholar.

In addition, we recommend that you have taken a research seminar and the Empirical Corporate Finance course at the chair of Corporate Finance, as you will learn many of the methods relevant for the master's thesis there.

To apply for writing a master thesis at the Chair of Corporate Finance, please notice the following application deadlines:

  • 1st of January
  • 1st of April
  • 1st of July
  • 1st of October

If you want to apply for the master thesis please provide us with the following information:

  • Current Academic Transcript
  • Motivational letter including (up to 2 pages):
    • Research Question
    • Empirical Literature that your idea is based on (VWL Handelsblattranking must be at least 0.6)
    • Possible Data Source

After you have sent your application to you will be invited to discuss your research idea at the chair. This meeting is necessary for you to get feedback and to evaluate whether your topic is suitable. The formal registration will take place approx. fourteen days from the respective application date. Please note that it is not recommendable to register before you have collected your data.

Two month after the registration you will have to give a short presentation (approx. 30 minutes presentation +  15 minutes discussion) of your thesis at the Chair in a research colloquium that will be graded (6 ECTS). The main purpose of the presentation is for you to collect feedback on your work and to be able to incorporate new ideas or methods into the final version of your thesis.

Guidelines can be found under "Guidelines for Bachelor and Master Thesis"

After submitting your thesis please provide your supervisor with the following material via mail:

  • Electronic copy of your thesis (PDF and Word/LaTex)
  • Raw Data Set (Excel and/or Stata)
  • Stata Log- and Do-File

Possible topics:

  • Behavioral Finance
  • Experimental Finance
  • Financial Literacy
  • Corporate Finance
  • Sustainable Investments: Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Criteria

Selected past topics:

  • Schätzung von Kreditausfallwahrscheinlichkeiten - Verbesserungspotentiale durch die Nutzung von Kontotransaktionsdaten
  • Finance and Growth - An Empirical Evaluation of Current Theories
  • Do Descriptive or Injunctive Norm Interventions Influence Investors to Make More Socially Responsible Investments?
  • Determinanten des Venture Capital Funding unter Berücksichtigung ausgewählter Rechtssysteme