PhD in Management
The accounting doctoral program at Boston University is small, with only one to three students starting the program each year. The program is directed towards producing accounting scholars—individuals who have the technical knowledge and insight necessary to ask interesting and relevant research questions, as well as the research skills required to discover appropriate answers. This training is designed to provide a strong foundation for a career as an accounting academic at a research-oriented institution. Graduates from the program have published in the leading journals in the field. Download the Accounting Concentration Brochure.
PhD Liaison: Krishnagopal Menon
In Boston University’s Information Systems Department, we are interested in understanding both how information and communication technologies affect organizations in terms of productivity and innovation; and to use this understanding to improve the design, implementation, and management of information systems. The faculty has a wide variety of research interests spanning technical, strategic, and behavioral perspectives. Their research includes software development and maintenance, decision support systems, electronic communications, the role of technical platforms and networks, and the relationship between information technology and business strategy.
The goal of the program is to prepare students for academic careers in information systems and related fields. Students will acquire the knowledge and skills needed to carry out theory-based empirical research concerning the design and management of information systems. The program includes training in both organizational and technical aspects of information systems. Download the Information Systems Concentration Brochure.
PhD Liaison: Nachi Sahoo
In Boston University’s Marketing Department, we are interested in understanding a variety of issues related to customer relationship management, consumer behavior, and distribution systems that enable a firm to be more market-focused. The faculty has a wide variety of research interests spanning both methodological and behavioral perspectives. Examples of their research include customer lifetime value computation and analysis and the role of the value of customers in determining company worth; the role of product design in adoption decisions; the role of corporate social responsibility and corporate identity in strengthening customer relationships; ways to minimize post-purchase consumer regret; inter-organizational relationships in franchising contexts; and multiple issues in branding.
The goal of the program is to prepare students for academic careers in marketing. Students will acquire the knowledge and skills needed to carry out theory-based empirical research related to a variety of cutting-edge marketing issues. The program includes training in theoretical, methodological, and substantive aspects of marketing.
Download the Marketing Concentration Brochure.
PhD Liaison: Shuba Srinivasan
Operations & Technology Management
Special interest groups of faculty who are doing active research in supply chain management, the management of technology and organizational change, and other areas of faculty strength such as services and health sector management deliver the doctoral program in operations and technology management. The idea behind a special interest group is to create a critical mass of research and intellectual inquiry and to carry on this theme throughout the doctoral student’s time in the program. Download the Operations & Technology Management Concentration Brochure.
PhD Liaison: Sean Willems
In our concern for enhancing organizational effectiveness, we focus on personal, organizational, and societal development. Personal effectiveness includes abilities to perform tasks competently, to learn in changing circumstances, and to develop one’s own potential. Department research on leadership development, human resource development, emotional intelligence, and careers reflect this interest. Organizational effectiveness includes the capacities to attain organizational goals, to interact constructively with larger contexts, and to provide settings within which members can perform and develop.
Department research on organizational cultures, team learning, improving urban schools, and organizational change in many settings reflect these concerns. Societal development includes patterns of economic, political, and social relations within which organizations can contribute to creating healthy, productive, and just societies. Department research on international joint ventures, environmental preservation, social problem-solving across sectoral and national boundaries, and building capacity for social learning address these areas. Download the Organizational Behavior Concentration Brochure.
Faculty Contact: Aimin Yan
Strategy & Innovation
The field of strategy is distinguished from others by its focus on the general management of the whole organization. A central pursuit in the field is the understanding of how firms generate performance advantages over competitors. Such pursuit involves the study of both internal, (firm-specific) factors as well as the influence of external (environmental) contexts.
The management of innovation and technological change first evolved as a separate field focused on the understanding of how industries evolve and how organizations foster, manage, and respond to innovation. As of late, the fields of strategy and innovation have increasingly converged, given that innovation (in all its forms, such as products/services, processes, or organizational) has emerged as one of the most powerful ways to generate and sustain competitive advantage in many industries.
By its nature, strategy and innovation relates to real problems that managers face in organizations competing in dynamic environments. It emphasizes theory development and translating that theory into practical applications that can help managers make better strategic decisions. Therefore, doctoral studies in this field provide an excellent preparation for research-driven academic careers, but have the added benefit of endowing graduates with a base to pursue alternatives paths related to teaching, consulting, or professional careers in industry. Download the Strategy and Innovation Concentration Brochure.
PhD Liaison: Tim Simcoe
Why a PhD in Management?
Extraordinary changes in the global business environment are challenging management schools worldwide. Management education must impart the skills required to respond to technological changes, the information revolution, global competition, and constant shifts in political and social environments. Many of the management models adopted by business are outdated, and thus we need innovative ideas rooted in solid academic research.
Boston University’s PhD program addresses this need by training scholars to develop and sharpen management theories to enhance their contribution to management education and practice. Students acquire advanced knowledge of literature and theory in their area of specialization—the major—as well as solid grounding in a minor (for example, a social science discipline such as sociology, economics, or political science) that broadens their foundation. They also gain theoretical and practical knowledge of advanced research skills, essential for publishing in leading academic journals.
The program ensures that students develop an appreciation of the role of their research domain in managerial and organizational contexts, and can translate their learning from scholarly research into effective teaching. Our faculty, which has earned world-wide recognition for its scholarly and applied research, is the School’s major resource for doctoral education. Their commitment to advancing management knowledge through research published in top journals, and improving the quality of teaching, enables them to effectively mentor doctoral students, who, in close collaboration with faculty, are part of the intellectual capital of the School.
Funding and Support for Students
The majority of doctoral students entering the PhD program receive substantial financial assistance, which covers full tuition for four years and a generous stipend.
Furthermore, the doctoral program has a budget to support doctoral student research projects, available via application to a faculty review committee. Students may also submit funding applications to attend professional conferences, where they may build their networks and learn more in depth about the research of colleagues in other universities. Support also comes in the form of faculty mentoring, where each incoming student is assigned to a faculty member in his or her field.