Dr Zohreh Pourzolfaghar

School of Business

Lecturer/Assistant Professor

(01) 474 7538


Dr. Zohreh Pourzolfaghar is Assistant Professor in Management Information System (MIS), and Director of the IT-Enable Innovation Programme at the School of Business, Maynooth University (MU). She is also the lead of the Digital Construction cluster at the Innovation Value Institute (IVI), MU. She is member of Lero the Science Foundation Ireland Research Centre for Software. She is a senior research member of the Business Informatics Group (IVI), and the theme lead in a project investigating the application of Enterprise Architecture in Smart Cities. Formerly, she held the positions of Research Fellow at IVI and Postdoctoral Researcher in a SFI funded research project titled "Smart City Reference IT Architecture" at Dublin City University (DCU). Zohreh received her PhD in Project Management from University Putra Malaysia (UPM) in 2011. The primary focus of her PhD research has been investigation of design processes from a perspective of information and knowledge management. She holds an MSc degree in Management Systems and Productivity, and a BSc in Software Engineering. Zohreh's academic interests focus around investigating potential benefits businesses may obtain from exploiting the power of digital information, as well as researching the process of digital transformation for small and medium-sized enterprises.

Research Interests

Zohreh's research interests include information management in the construction business. She is the cluster lead for the Digital Construction cluster (https://ivi.ie/project_category/digital-construction/) at the Innovation Value Institute. Zohreh is the Co-PI for several European projects, including EnTrust MSCA DN (https://entrustdn.eu/), DIGI+ MSCA co-fund (https://digipluscofund.eu/), STEFORA Erasmus KA2, DigiFABs Erasmus+, Vision EPA project, and GDI-IE (DG-CNCT). Zohreh regularly participates in proposal writing for national and European funding calls. Since 2020, she has been engaged in the submission of eight proposals, two of which have been funded for 2022. Zohreh formerly served as the theme lead for a Science Foundation Ireland-funded study investigating the applicability of Enterprise Architecture in Smart Cities. She has been Principal Investigator (PI) for an Industry Fellowship Programme, funded by Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) awarded in 2018, and PI for two Innovation Voucher (IV) projects in collaboration with industry, funded by Enterprise Ireland. Zohreh presented her work at international conferences and has published research in Journals and Conference Proceedings. Zohreh has published her research findings in international journals and conference proceedings. Zohreh has been leading research for Cost Action CA16222 (WISE-ACT), a European-wide network. She served as topic lead for the successful European PERFORM MSCA ITN project, as well as a member of the core management team, the supervisory board, and the project's research coordination committee. 

Research Projects

Title Role Description Start date End date Amount
GDI-IE (DG-CNCT) Genomic Data Infrastructure Ireland Project Team The Genomics Data Infrastructure project has the goal of efficiently sharing human genetic data across national borders, in order to improve research and clinical practice. A genome is the set of genes in a person. For rare diseases, knowing about other patients with the same rare genetic variant can help patients and their doctors with family planning decisions, and sometimes help with making treatment choices. For cancers, sharing of data may give doctors insights into the choice of targeted cancer therapies. For common diseases, knowing about drug metabolising genes can help with better choices of drug therapies. This project will contribute to building safe computer systems and protocols, so that Irish genomes can be safely shared with other countries. Making Irish genomes available will increase the relevance of international research to the Irish setting, since our genomes and clinical data will be included in the large studies that are needed to tell apart disease causing genes from harmless ones. This will help build better health policies in managing diseases with a genetic component. To achieve this, we will set up a group to plan how to best manage the sharing of Irish genomes for research and clinical reasons. We will set up a computer system that protects the security of the personal genomic data contributed by individuals, building on systems developed in other European countries. We will train clinicians and scientists in the systems, so that they can be used safely to advance knowledge. We will explore opportunities for data sharing with Northern Ireland in a ‘Genomes of Ireland’ initiative, tying this in with an ambitious Europe wide ‘1+ Million Genomes’ initiative. 01/01/2024 01/01/2026
DigiFABs Erasmus+ Responsible Dynamic Digital Change Agents for Food and Beverage SMEs Co-PI Responsible Dynamic Digital Change Agents (RDDCA) for Food and Beverage (F&B) SMEs – DigiFABs aims to foster digital, resilience, and innovation skills to optimize the management of digital transformation in small and middle-sized Enterprises (SMEs) in the F&B processing sector. The consortium of 14 partners from HEIs, VETs, businesses, and network organisations represents 7 European regions of diverse digitalisation levels and regions with high involvement in the F&B sector. In addition, the HEIs will engage 100 students from three disciplines and 10+ scientists from Engineering / IT, Agriculture / Nutrition and Business fields and the business network organisations will engage 15+ SMEs from the sector to pilot the course programme including (1) a multidisciplinary action learning SUMMER SCHOOL and CHALLENGE for STUDENTS to acquire the digital, green and resilience skills of a RDDCA theoretically and practically and (2) piloting of BOOTCAMPS for EDUCATORS and F&B SMEs to facilitate a RDDCA challenge in their region. The final materials will be made publicly available including introductory MOOCs. 01/02/2024 01/02/2027
DIGI+ MSCA COFUND-Leadership for Sustainable Digital Transformation in Europe Co-PI DIGI+ is a world-class research fellowship programme, cofunded by MSCA, on Sustainable Digital Transformation that aims for a new generation of creative, entrepreneurial and innovative researcher leaders, able to face current and future challenges aligned with EU’s Digital and Green Agenda. Driven by the ambition of sustainable ecosystems the DIGI+ research programme is focused on developing innovative digital transformation approaches addressing cross-disciplinary challenges, relevant to current policies and strategies in the European Research Area. The programme funds 20 Postdoctoral Researchers to advance digital transformation practices in four multidisciplinary research themes: 1) Innovative Business Models and Data Ecosystems; 2) Digital Culture and Skills ; 3) Data Governance; 4) Innovative Digital Technologies and Adoption aligned with the EU sustainable development goals. Driven by the ambition of sustainability, DIGI+ has brought together partners that cultivate excellence by extending the traditional academic research setting, equipping researchers with a tailored combination of research-specific and transferable skills that will enhance career prospects in both the academic and non-academic sectors. DIGI+ is embedded within Ireland’s leading SFI-funded research centres, Lero and Adapt, bringing together a group of world-leading experts. Together with outstanding working conditions that support both family and career, DIGI+ thus provides the fellows with excellent career perspective. DIGI+ will impact on research, policy, standards and Digital skills. DIGI+ fellows will be able to convert knowledge and ideas to drive the digital transformation for economic and social benefit, with sustainability a key parameter. DIGI+ research helps to establish a set of innovative, multidisciplinary Digital Transformation Paths supporting the EU sustainability goals and help forming sustainable, net-zero economies, a key aim within the EU for the next decade. 01/01/2023 31/12/2027
EnTrust MSCA DN - Next Generation of Trustworthy Agri-Data Management Co-PI ENTRUST brings together 16 leading research institutions and enterprise from 5 different countries across Europe to establish a Doctoral Network that will train a cohort of 11 Doctoral Researchers (DRs) in an intersectoral, international and interdisciplinary setting with the aim to establish a new generation of Data Executives. These graduates will have obtained a PhD and are able to take on leading roles in academia, industry or policy sector. They will be experts on agri-data governance sharing data in a fair, transparent, and trusted environment. EnTrust demonstrates how agri-data from farmers can be made available, governed, and exploited, with benefits shared in a fair way. ENTRUST will enable DRs to excel in their future career perspectives in the intersection between computing, information systems and social science and thus, provide the DRs with enhanced career perspectives, combined with an innovation-oriented mind-set and creativity, thereby forming a new generation of Data Executives. EnTrust provides the foundation for doctoral training programme on agri-data governance that will set a standard on including gender dimension and sustainability aspects within PhD training. Entrust also addresses current challenges of data governance in agriculture and farming and will provide scientific results on (1) adoption factors of Data Technologies to allow farmers to unlock data potential, (2) on enhanced Data Governance practices to ensure a fair and trustworthy agri-data space and (3) on new types of innovative Business models for fair value sharing. This is combined with network training and research and outreach to maximise the project impact. EnTrust provides input in science, data governance and agricultural and many other sectors. Entrust supports the European Data Strategy foreseeing European Data Spaces as the key instrument to democratize access to data and unlock its full value, in particular for the agri-food sector. 01/01/2023 31/12/2026
STEFORA (Erasmus KA2) Co-PI STEM for ALL - STEFORA is a result of the self-as the results from the on-going STINT project funded by the Swedish Government, where diversity and gender equality are identified as topics of interest aiming at sharing knowledge and experiences in terms of frameworks and empirical studies to investigate Generation Z’s enrolment and involvement in the development of STEM. The on-going (STINT) project was designed by LNU and RIT (AUK), for starting a long-term collaboration in academic development with RIT (AUK) and with other HEIs in Kosovo and the region, for supporting internationalization and enhancement of HEIs’ STEM capacities. A part of the core activities of the project are designed to address the findings of self-assessments and strategic meetings between LNU and beneficiary HEIs in Kosovo and Albania from December 2021. The other focus is to take advantage of the Committee for Women's Rights and Gender Equality (FEMM) Study produced by the European Parliament. As such, STEFORA’s is designed with a holistic approach around three wide/general project objectives: (1) digital citizenship focusing on mitigating institutional barriers, (2) apply universal design principles in formal and non-formal learning activities including premises, and (3) adopt norm critical approaches to raise cultural awareness and foster gender sensitive education, in the target countries specific to STEM engagement for women. 01/01/2023 01/01/2025
Innovation Voucher Corballis PI As part of the development of Safety Management System (SMS) software tools, it is necessary to include a Security, Quality and Asset Risk management . Several standards exist, e.g. ISO 9001 ISO 27001,ISO 55000, etc., and are in use across the potential end users of the software. To maximise the applicability of the SMS software tool, these standards should be incorporated in our solution to attract use by potential customers. 09/08/2021 08/08/2022 13000
BIM stds Innovation Voucher PI The exchange (communication/sharing) of information in the AEC (architecture, engineering, construction) sector, in relation to built-environment assets (buildings, infrastructure, utilities etc), is most often performed through files or documents (information containers), of various types and format. The ISO19650 set of standards, published in 2019, requires files/documents (information containers) to be stored/managed within a “Common Data Environment” (CDE), andfor these information containers to have associated “metadata” properties which describe the content, status, revision (and optionally classification) of these files, to facilitate quick/easy search, query & processing of information. However, the ISO19650 standard itself is not specific on what properties are required - this is left to individual companies operating on projects. This project will work to define specific properties/attributes, to facilitate better business processing of information. 19/07/2021 17/09/2022 13000
PERFORM MSCA ITN project Research Coordination Committee member PERFORM will tackle Digital Retail challenges through a combination of training and research. The research projects of PERFORM will develop new methods, concepts and technology implementations for retailers. The projects will be conducted by PhD candidates at different organizations. The following table provides an overview of these projects. 01/09/2018 12/12/2022
Erasmus+ Trustworthy AI project Co-PI Artificial intelligence (AI) is an area of strategic importance for the economic and social development of the European Union and a key component of the Digital Agenda for Europe. However, at the same time that AI systems offer immense opportunities, they create risks and may contravene our democratic or ethical principles in areas such as inclusion, privacy, transparency and more. Higher Education must play a role in contributing to cutting-edge, safe, ethical AI. It is up to us to prepare young people with advanced programming skills, but also to prepare all students to understand the implications of AI and ensure it is put to good use. https://www.trustworthyaiproject.eu/framework-for-trustworthy-ai-education/ 08/12/2020 08/12/2022

Post Doctoral Fellows / Research Team

Researcher Name Project Funding Body
Claudia Elizabeth Roessing Rocha Vision EPA project

Peer Reviewed Journal

Year Publication
2023 zohreh.pourzolfaghar@mu.ie; marco.alfano@mu.ie; markus.helfert@mu.ie (2023) 'Application of ethical AI requirements to an AI solution use-case in healthcare domain'. Mid-American Journal of Business, . [Link] https://doi.org/10.1108/AJB-12-2022-0201
2022 Leonidas Anthopolous, Zohreh Pourzolfaghar, Kristina Lemmer (2022) 'Smart Cities as hubs: connect, collect and control city flows  '. Cities, .
2021 Cakir G.; Iftikhar R.; Bielozorov A.; Pourzolfaghar Z.; Helfert M. (2021) 'Omnichannel retailing: Digital transformation of a medium-sized retailer'. Journal of Information Technology Teaching Cases, . [DOI] [Full-Text]
2020 Pourzolfaghar, Zohreh and Bastidas, Viviana and Helfert, Markus (2020) 'Standardisation of enterprise architecture development for smart cities'. Journal of the Knowledge Economy, 11 (4).
2016 Pourzolfaghar, Z.; Ibrahim, R.; Adam, N.M. (2016) 'Explicating Mechanical and Electrical Knowledge for Design Phase of Green Building Projects'. Journal of Information and Knowledge Management, 15 (1).
2014 Pourzolfaghar, Z.; Ibrahim, R. (2014) 'Impacts of Adding Knowledge Flow to an Activity-Based Framework for Conceptual Design Phase on Performance of Building Projects'. ELECTRONIC JOURNAL OF KNOWLEDGE MANAGEMENT, 12 (3).
2014 Pourzolfaghar,Z.; Ibrahim, R.; Abdullah, R.; Adam, N. M. (2014) 'A Technique to Capture Multi-Disciplinary Tacit Knowledge During the Conceptual Design Phase of a Building Project'. Journal of Information and Knowledge Management, 13 (2).
2013 Pourzolfaghar, Z.; Ibrahim, R.; Abdullah, R.; Adam, N. M.; Ali. A. A. A. (2013) 'Improving Dynamic Knowledge Movements with a Knowledge-Based Framework during Conceptual Design of a Green Building Project'. International Journal of Knowledge Management, 9 (2).

Conference Contribution

Year Publication
2020 Pourzolfaghar, z.; Cirqueira, D.; Cakir, G. (2020) CHIRA2020 WEDESHI-DR-Special Session on User Decision Support and Human Interaction in Digital Retail, 2020 online, 05/11/2020-05/11/2020. [Link]
2020 Pourzolfaghar, Z.; Helfert, M. (2020) Heads of IS Annual Conference 2020 Day 1 – 12th Nov Workshop in HIS Conference - Collaboration with Mayo CC Mayo, Ireland, .


Year Publication
2011 Zohreh Pourzolfaghar (2011) Improving knowledge capture during conceptual design phase of building projects. [Thesis]

Published Report

Year Publication
2021 Petersen, S.A.; Bokolo, A.J.; Ahlers, D.; Shams, A.; Helfert, M.; Alloush, I.; Pourzolfaghar, Z. (2021) D1. 2: Report on the Architecture for the ICT Ecosystem. https://cityxchange. eu/knowledge-base/d1-2-report-on-the-architecture-for-the-ict-ecosystem, .

Conference Publication

Year Publication
2020 Iftikhar, R., Pourzolfaghar, Z. and Helfert, M. (2020) Lecture Notes in Information Systems and Organisation Omnichannel Value Chain: Mapping Digital Technologies for Channel Integration Activities. Lecture Notes in Information Systems and Organisation
2019 Pourzolfaghar, Z.; Bresmer, C.; Helfert, M.; Piller, G. (2019) Proceedings of the 7th International Conference on Smart Cities and Green ICT Systems (SMARTGREENS 2 A Comparison of Smart City Development and Big Data Analytics Adoption Approaches
2019 Petersen, S. A.; Pourzolfaghar, Z.; Ahlers, D.; Krogstie, J.; Helfert, M. (2019) In Collaborative Networks and Digital Transformation: 20th IFIP WG 5.5 Working Conference Value-added services, virtual enterprises and data spaces inspired Enterprise architecture for smart cities
2019 Knutas, A.; Pourzolfaghar, Z.; Helfert, M. (2019) In Computer-Human Interaction Research and Applications: First International Conference, CHIRA 2017 The role and impact of descriptive theories in creating knowledge in design science [DOI]
2018 Helfert, M.; Melo, V. A. B.; Pourzolfaghar, Z. (2018) In Digital Transformation and Global Society: Third International Conference, DTGS 2018, St. Peters Digital and Smart Services - The Application of Enterprise Architecture https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-02843-5_22
2017 Pourzolfaghar, Z.; Helfert, M. (2017) AMCIS 2017 Proceedings. 16 Taxonomy of Smart Elements for Designing Effective Services [Link]
2017 Pourzolfaghar, Z.; Helfert, M. (2017) In: FedCSIS 2017, 3-6 Sep 2017, Prague, Czech Republic Utilising latent data in smart buildings: a process model to collect, analyse and make building data accessible for smart industries
2017 Pourzolfaghar, Zohreh and Helfert, Markus and Melo, Viviana Angely Bastidas and Khalilijafarabad, Ahmad (2017) 2017 IEEE International Conference on Big Data (Big Data) Proposing an access gate to facilitate knowledge exchange for smart city services
2017 Knutas, A.; Pourzolfaghar, Z.; Helfert, M. (2017) In Proceedings of the International Conference on Computer-Human Interaction Research and Application A meta-level design science process for integrating stakeholder needs [DOI]
2016 Pourzolfaghar, Z.; Helfert, M. (2016) In: Third International Conference, HCIBGO 2016, Held as Part of HCI International 2016 Investigating HCI Challenges for Designing Smart Environments
2013 Shahnazari, M.; Pourzolfaghar, Z.; Mirza, M.N. (2013) In ECMLG2013-Proceedings For the 9th European Conference on Management Leadership and Governance A Review of Project Managerial Aspects Influenced by Emotional Intelligence
2011 Zohreh Pourzolfaghar, R Ibrahim, R Abdullah, NM Adam (2011) In Proceeding of 10th European Conference on Research Methodology for Business and Management Studies (ECRM 2011) Potential technique for capturing building design tacit knowledge to decrease cost and time overruns Conference Proceeding,

Other Journal

Year Publication
2019 Pourzolfaghar, Z.; Helfert, M. (2019) 'Connected systems in smart cities: use-cases of integration of buildings information with smart systems' International Journal on Proceedings of Science and Technology, . [Link]
2013 Mirza, M. N.; Shahnazari, M.; Pourzolfaghar, Z. (2013) 'Significance of Scope in Project Success' Procedia Technology, 9 .

Book Chapter

Year Publication
2018 Pourzolfaghar, Z.; Helfert, M. (2018) 'Integration of buildings information with live data from IoT devices. Connected Environments for the Internet of Things: Challenges and Solutions' In: Connected Environments for Internet of Things. Springer Link : Springer. [Link] https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-70102-8_9
2015 Pourzolfaghar, Z. (2015) 'Improving Knowledge Movement in Building Design Projects' In: In Strategic Project Management: Contemporary Issues and Strategies for Developing Economies, p.205. New York : Routledge. https://doi.org/10.1201/b18986

Other Publication

Year Publication
2017 Pourzolfaghar, Z.; McDonnell, P.; Helfert, M. (2017) Barriers to Benefit from Integration of Building Information with Live Data from IOT Devices during the Facility Management Phase. [Link]
2016 Pourzolfaghar, Z.; Helfert, M. (2016) Types of IT Architectures in Smart Cities – A review from a Business Model and Enterprise Architecture Perspective. [Link]
2019 Pourzolfaghar,Z. (2019) Invited thought Leader to 3Data Hackathon.


Year Publication
2019 Pourzolfaghar, Z.; Cudden, J. (2019) Transforming Dublin into a Smart City. [Podcast] [Link]


Year Publication
2023 Pourzolfaghar, Z. (2023) Digital Construction. [Webinar] [Link]
2021 Pourzolfaghar, Z. (2021) Digital Construction: I.S. EN ISO 19650-2:2018 – Practical Insights and Irish Annex. [Webinar] [Link]
2020 Pourzolfaghar, Z. (2020) Digital Construction and Design Delivery. [Webinar] [Link]
2020 Pourzolfaghar,Z. (2020) Introducing Trustworthy AI. [Webinar] [Link]


Year Publication
2018 Pourzolfaghar, Z.; Montague, R. (2018) Exploration of BIM Process from Information Flow Perspective. [Presentation] [Link]

Research Seminar

Year Publication
2023 Pourzolfaghar, Z. (2023) Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) Doctoral Network (DN) EnTrust (Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) Doctoral Network (DN) EnTrust. [Research Seminar] [Link]

Online Multimedia

Year Publication
2023 Pourzolfaghar, Z. (2023) Buildings Indoor Map App. [Online Multimedia] [Link]
2022 Pourzolfaghar, Z.; Helfert, M. (2022) Digi+ MSCA Co-fund Proposal. [Online Multimedia] [Link]
2022 Pourzolfaghar, Z. (2022) Data Governance and Digital Construction. [Online Multimedia] [Link]

Presented Papers

Year Publication
2017 Pourzolfaghar, Z.; McDonnell, P.; Helfert, M. (2017) Barriers to benefit from integration of building information with live data from IOT devices during the facility management phase. [Presented Papers] [Link]
Certain data included herein are derived from the © Web of Science (2024) of Clarivate. All rights reserved.

Professional Associations

Description Function From / To
Lero, Science Foundation Ireland Research Centre for Software - Member Research Centre 07/12/2015 -
Innovation Value Institute - Digital Construction Cluster Lead Research in collaboration with Industry 01/06/2019 -
Journal of Information & Knowledge Management (JIKM)- Associate Editor Publication 01/01/2018 -
NSAI-National Standards Authority of Ireland - Member of Committees and workgroups The National Standards AuthStandardization member body for the Republic of Ireland 01/01/2017 -

Honors and Awards

Date Title Awarding Body
01/06/2018 Industry fellowship funding award by SFI Science Foundation Ireland
01/07/2021 Innovation Voucher in Collaboration with ArcDox Company Enterprise Ireland
01/08/2021 Innovation Voucher in Collaboration with Corballis Compani Enterprise Ireland
30/06/2022 Research Engaged Award on IVI Summit 2022 Innovation Value Institute
08/09/2022 BIM Hero Award BIM Coordination Summit 2022


Committee Function From / To
Research Coordination Committee - PERFORM MSCA ITN project Member 23/09/2018 - 31/12/2021
Research Coordination Committee - EnTrust MSCA DN project Committee member 01/01/2023 - 31/12/2026
School of Business research cluster on Work, Collaborations and Governance collaborating on the preparation of the research-related chapter for initial AACSB iSER (initial Self-Evaluation Report) 01/01/2023 - 31/12/2027


Employer Position From / To
National University of Ireland Maynooth Assistant Professor 10/05/2020 - 28/02/2023
National University of Ireland Maynooth Assistant Professor 01/01/2023 - 31/12/2027


Start date Institution Qualification Subject
10/02/2020 Innovation Value Institute, Maynooth University Research Fellow Research Project No. SFI 13/RC/2094. This project is sponsored and funded exclusively by Science Foundation Ireland (SFI), an external funding body to the university.
07/12/2015 Dublin City University Industry Fellowship Investigation of BIM related standards
07/12/2015 Dublin City University Postdoctoral Researcher Smart City IT Architecture


Language Reading Writing Speaking
French Functional Basic Basic


Client Description
ArcDox The Fellow will collaborate with ArcDox and his team members to explore data exchange issues with other systems in construction domain. This industry fellowship has been a unique opportunity for the Fellow to be in contact with practitioners and industry users and immerse in an innovative and modern practical environment, as well as exploring a range of real use-cases. In addition the Fellow will benefit from the practical knowledge of the mentor and transfer this invaluable knowledge to academia. This Fellowship would be a unique opportunity to exchange and enhance the knowledge and expertise between academia and industry with an ultimate goal to respond to industry needs.

Teaching Interests

  • Digital Business (MI6241)
  • Digital Technology Governance (MI6233)
  • Analytics Live (MI630)
  • Global IT Business Intelligence (MN333)
  • Introduction to Management Information Systems (MN204)
  • Qualitative Methods in Business and Management Research (MN811)
  • Social Media (MN329)
  • Digital Business Certificate (MN610)
  • Digital Transformation
  • Project Management
  • Enterprise Architecture

Recent Students

Graduation date Name Degree
2023 Rehan Iftikhar PhD
2026 Nasibeh Rahbarnodehi PhD
2026 Fjolla Berisha PhD
2026 Erica Tegolo PhD
2026 Leidiane Da Silva PhD

External Collaborators

Name Role Country
University of Thessaly Assistant Professor Greece
NSAI-National Standards Authority of Ireland Standard developement Ireland
ArcDox BIM Consultancy Industry Rep. Ireland
University of Applied Science Upper Austria (FH OOE) Assistant Professor Austria
Corballis Technologies Industry Rep. Ireland
University of Coimbra Assistant Professor Portugal