Research Project #15

Topic: Innovative Payment Paths for Digital Retail

Project Description: We will investigate how new technologies can assist to improve the checkout-process in-store and online towards a seamless customer experience. This includes the evaluation of technologies and possibilities of mobile payment solutions to optimize the checkout process. Technologies to evaluate may include existing contactless payment functions (NFC), new technologies (instant payments, blockchain, chatbot, wearables, etc.) and also various Fintech solutions in the context of European directives. Satisfaction of customers and merchants with existing technologies should also be evaluated and possible improvements for these technologies should be presented. Finally, we will develop a prototype including function/security tests and in store integration.

Researcher: This research project will be carried out by ESR 15 Karthickeshwar Shankaravelu.

Host Supervisor: This position is supervised by Markus Hofer, who is responsible at RLB for introducing new payment technologies and systems to the product and service portfolio of the banking group. He is at Raiffeisen currently leading the introduction of new mobile payment solutions to the Austrian market. He has significant expertise in mobile and banking technologies.

Host Institution: RLB is Austria’s leading regional bank. It has a strong customer focus and is a secure and reliable partner for private, corporate and institutional customers. Customers are supported with targeted and customised financial and business services.

Academic Supervisor: Since RLB as non-academic beneficiary does not provide PhD programs academic supervision for the PhD will be held by Dr. Markus Helfert at Maynooth University. Markus Helfert is the Director Business Informatics Research Group Science Foundation Ireland, Maynooth University. He has significant experience in Smart IoT Environments and Information Systems. He is SFI Funded Investigator in Lero – The Irish Software Research Centre and Lead Researcher for a Project within Insight – The Analytics research Centre. His research, featured in peer-reviewed journals and widely in conference participation. To provide the Early Stage Researcher of this position a local academic supervisor academic co-supervison will be held by Dr. Andreas Auinger. Andreas Auinger is head of studies of the master study programme Digital Business Management and head of the of the Digital Business research group at the FHO. He has led and worked on more than 15 R&D projects over the last 13 years as far as Digital Business, Digital Marketing and Information Systems are concerned.

University: Maynooth University is an internationally recognised institution located 25 kilometres outside of Dublin, Ireland, and is the nation’s fastest growing university. One of four constituent universities of the National University of Ireland, Maynooth University in 2019 placed #50 in the global top 100 universities under 50 years old in the Times Higher Education World University Rankings. With more than 12,000 students from more than 90 countries, Maynooth offers a range of programmes at undergraduate, Master’s and PhD level in the humanities, science and engineering, and social sciences, including business, law, and education. The University also offers a range of international programmes and partnerships.

Secondments: This position includes 3 secondments to partner organisations. The planned secondments will be to

    • Unimarkt (under supervision of Staufer), in month 10 for 2 months, for ‘analysis and research of check-out process in store and online’,
    • Unimarkt (under supervision of Staufer), in month 20 for 2 months, for ‘implementation and prototypical testing’,
    • Maynooth University (under supervision of Prof. Helfert), in month 36 for 4 months, for ‘Research methodology and research writing’.