The research program enfolds a wide area of questions from the field of general business administration and organization as well as special aspects in the area of business information and communication systems. The connecting element is the relevance of information as factor of production for economic activities. A majority of research projects applies the new institutional economics, i.e. property rights theory, transaction cost theory and principal-agent theory as a theoretical framework, often endorsed by other economic and socio-scientific approaches. Methodologically, the research work is primarily of conceptual nature. Empirical work is usually done in form of case studies but sometimes also extended to large surveys.
Within the framework of this research program, many research papers and doctoral theses have emerged in the field of general business administration and organization. Most of them are dedicated to different aspects of organizational structures, such as institutional arrangements, contracts, trust, knowledge and time.
When applying this institutional economic fundamentals to a specific organizational problem, the field of reorganization was a main focus of previous research. The research project "Anreiz zu Wandel [Incentive to Change]", which was generously supported by the German research foundation "Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft" (DFG), addressed this issue. The pivotal focus of this research was the question how processes of reorganization should be designed in order to assure the support of the employees. To answer this question, the analysis was based upon New Institutional Economics as well as game theory and organizational and industrial psychology.
Virtualization of enterprises and value-added processes are important issues at the interface between organization theory and business information and communication.
Recently, the question of how to design knowledge management systems in distributed structures in order to use the resource knowledge effectively has been extensively discussed. This research question was analyzed from a theoretical point of view as well as in the course of industry projects in the field of knowledge sharing and transfer.
Additional work has been done on industries in which virtuality plays a decisive role, e.g. in the fields of media, telecommunication and e-commerce.
The research field information and communication is finally completed with analyses about information and communication systems and their future development.
Out of the vast amount of the current research projects, the following central fields can be identified:
In the field of corporation networks we are presently working on the formation, contractual design and controlling of corporation networks, business webs and value nets.
- The research projects on electronic business focus on the technical realization of interorganizational alliances in the context of supply chain management, electronic marketplaces and their impact on competitive strategies.
- Another focus in the context of mobile business is the research project "Mobiserve" dealing with the development of mobile applications and especially using open source approaches.
Many research projects are conducted in cooperation with partners from other academic institutions or the industry. The output of this research is reflected in over 400 publications.
 Cf. Picot, Arnold / Dietl, Helmut / Franck, Egon (2002): Organisation: Eine ökonomische Perspektive [Organization: An Economic Perspective], 3rd edition, Stuttgart (Schäffer-Poeschel); Japanese version: Shin-seido-ha-keizai-gaku niyoru Soshikinyumon, (Hakuto-Shobo), 1999.
 Cf. Picot, Arnold / Freudenberg, Heino / Gaßner, Winfried (1999): Management von Reorganisationen: Maßschneidern als Konzept für den Wandel [Management of Reorganizations], Wiesbaden (Gabler) for a general overview as well as (among others)
- Wolff, Birgitta (1996): "Incentive-Compatible Change Management in a Welfare State: Asking the Right Questions in the German Standort-Debate", Working Paper #6.4, Center for European Studies, Harvard University 1996;
- Wolff, Birgitta (2000): "Incentive-Compatible Change Management", in: Raub, W. / Weesie, J. / Bruins, J. (Ed.): The Management of Durable Relations: Theoretical and Empirical Models for Households and Organizations, Amsterdam (Thela Thesis) 2000, pp. 92-94.
Picot, Arnold (1993): "Contingencies for the Emergence of Efficient Symbiotic Arrangements", Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics 149 (4), pp. 731-740;
- Picot, Arnold / Ripperger, Tanja / Wolff, Birgitta (1996): "The Fading Boundaries of the Firm: The Role of Information and Communication Technology", Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics, 152 (1), pp. 65-79.
 Cf. Zerdick, Axel / Picot, Arnold / Schrape, Klaus et al. (2000): E-Conomics: Strategies for the Digital Marketplace (European Communication Council Report), Berlin et al. (Springer); Japanese version: Intanetto-Ekonomi: Aratana Shijo-hosoku to Kigyo-senryaku (NTT-Shuppan), 2002 for a general overview as well as (among others)
Picot, Arnold / Röhrl, Heiner / Bortenlänger, Christine (1997): "Organization of Electronic Markets: Constributions from the New Institutional Economics", The Information Society 13 (1), pp. 107-123;
- Picot, Arnold / Bortenlänger, Christine / Röhrl, Heiner (1995): "The Automation of Capital Markets", Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication 1 (3);
- Picot, Arnold (2001): "Telecommunications and Convergence: The Situation in Germany", in: Nakamura, K. / Agata, K. (Ed.): Convergence of Telecommunications and Broadcasting in Japan, United Kingdom and Germany, Cornwall (Waseda / Curzon International Series), pp. 9-23.