Doctoral education in business administration needs to change in order to cope with the fast growing demand for PhD holders, who can teach and perform research at a high quality level. Additionally, society has a rapidly growing need for knowledge workers who have a doctoral education or an equivalent. The traditional apprentice approach may not be able to cope with that demand. Society has also criticized the inefficiency and cost associated with the current model of PhD education in management or business administration. The purpose of this paper is to provide a reflection for leaders in business education on how we can design a portfolio of different avenues for doctoral education.
This paper is based on the author's own experience with INSEAD, the University of Cambridge and Singapore Management University, as well as his observations of other universities. It is thus anchored in a few case studies.
The author pleads for more diversity in doctoral education. It is proposed that we may need to add different models of doctoral education, characterized by more interdisciplinary work and a more diverse career path. Business Schools will have to find new ways to deliver the education and to develop the communities of practice that will share the values of scientific research.
Society needs more knowledge works. Many of these will have the ambition to obtain a research degree, for example, a PhD. This article provides some suggestions and guidelines on how to innovate in the design and delivery of doctoral education in business administration. This should help society to be able to count on more and better adapted PhD graduates.
The paper brings new insights based on extensive experience with leading institutions that groom leaders in business administration.
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