Johannes Stark

PhD Candidate

Johannes Stark

PhD Candidate

Johannes Stark is a PhD candidate at the Kühne Logistics University since November 2021. His research focuses  on social disparities in organizational career advancement and is supervised by Prof. Dr. Christian Tröster and Prof. Dr. Niels Van Quaquebeke.

Prior to joining the PhD program at the KLU, Johannes obtained a M.Sc in Economics, Organizational and Social Psychology and a B.Sc. in Psychology at the LMU Munich. He spent a year abroad at the IDC Herzliya, Israel. Johannes conducted his master thesis on social disparities in students' educational decision-making. Further, Johannes is a certified Systemic Business Coach and Systematic Facilitator. He gained multiple practical experiences in the field of HR training and development.



Academic Positions


Research Assistant, Bavarian State Institute for Higher Education, Research and Planning, Munich, Germany

2019 - 2020 Research Assistant, Department for Economic and Organizational Psychology, LMU Munich, Germany
2017 - 2018 Research Assistant, Baruch Ivcher School of Psychology, IDC Herzliya, Israel

Professional Experience


Working Student, Training and Development, Giesecke + Devrient GmbH, Munich, Germany

2018 - 2019 Working Student, Project Management, Kirsten Schrick Management Consulting, Munic, Germany
2017 - 2018 Intern, Digital Marketing, SIT Innovation Consulting, Tel Aviv, Israel


Since 2021

PhD Candidate in Organizational Behavior, Kühne Logistics University, Hamburg, Germany

2019 - 2021 Master in Economics, Organizational Behavior and Social Psychology, LMU Munich, Germany
2015 - 2019 Bachelor in Psychology, LMU Munich, Germany
2017 - 2018 Exchange Student, IDC Herzliya, Israel



Abstract: Research consistently shows that students from academic households are more likely to enter higher education than students from non-academic households. These inequalities are only secondarily due to differences in performance (i.e., primary effects), but mostly due to students' decision making behavior (i.e., secondary effects). The relative share to which primary effects and secondary effects mediate the effect of students' educational background on their intention to enter higher education is affected by external conditions. One significant external influence that may have had an impact on social disparities in students' educational choices is the COVID-19 pandemic. Herein, we present data from N = 596 upper secondary students (41.6% from non-academic households) that were collected in Germany in April 2021. Building on rational choice theory, we scrutinized students' expected benefits (i.e., employment prospects and personal significance), costs (i.e., direct costs and opportunity costs), and subjective probability of success in pursuing higher education as important psychological pillars for their intention to enter higher education. Results show that about 14% of social differences in students' intention to enter higher education were due to primary effects, whereas almost 77% were explained by secondary effects. Specifically, we found that differences in the evaluation of benefits most strongly contributed to social inequalities in students' intention to enroll in higher education. Compared to research on pre- COVID-19 cohorts, our results point to shifts in existing patterns of inequalities in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Abstract: Purpose Storytelling is considered an effective leadership behavior. However, research on storytelling’s effects on followers is scarce and disconnected from leadership theory. This paper aims to explore the perspectives of both leaders and followers with a focus on interaction-based moderators and affective mediators of storytelling effects, building on transformational leadership and leader-member exchange theory. Design/methodology/approach Data from semi-structured interviews (N = 27 independent leaders and followers) were analyzed with a combined content-analytic and grounded theory approach. Findings Leaders’ intended effects of storytelling (transformation, relationship and information) evoked either positive or negative affective reactions in followers depending on how well the story met followers’ needs (need-supply fit), the adequacy of the input load transported by the story (story load) and how followers interpreted their leaders’ story (story appraisal). Followers’ positive or negative affective reactions translated into positive effects (corresponding to leaders’ intended effects) or negative effects (contradicting leaders’ intended effects), respectively. Results were integrated into an intention-perception model of storytelling. Originality/value Proposing an intention-perception model of storytelling, this paper explains when and why unintended effects of storytelling happen, and thus provides an alternative view to the one-fits-all approach on leaders’ storytelling advocated by popular management literature.

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