Key Information for Business Ph.D. Applicants
What might pursuing a Ph.D. in business entail? And how does it differ a Ph.D. in adjacent fields? If you're curious about questions like these, be
sure to check out the "Business Ph.D. Wiki." This wiki aims to provide up-to-date resources for prospective business Ph.D. program applicants:
Business School PhD Application Guide (2020) by Megan Gorges and Stephen Turban
Additionally, Megan and Stephen have put together a public Google Drive folder with example essays and CVs from previously successful Ph.D.
Pursuing a Ph.D. in Management:
TAMAGU Rankings houses a page of helpful resources for individuals who are interested in learning more about pursuing a Ph.D. in Management.
The resources have been suggested by research-active faculty members across a number of universities and are organized around questions
applicants may have.
Pursuing a Ph.D. in I-O Psychology:
SIOP has created a Linktree with key information and guidance for students who are interested in pursuing a Ph.D. in Industrial and
Organizational (I-O) Psychology. You will find these in the section entitled, "Student Resources."
DocNet promotes doctoral education in business administration and economics throughout the world by educating potential students about careers in academia. They also engage in a variety of recruiting strategies aimed at increasing the pool of qualified applicants for doctoral-granting institutions. DocNet members share information about best practices, curriculum and admissions issues, student support, and placement.
The BestBizSchools offers a search tool to locate AACSB-accredited schools that fit their needs, including school profiles and an explanation of accreditation and its benefits.
Note: Choosing a doctoral program comes down to far more than "rankings," which are completely arbitrary and not a great guide for program fit. This site is most helpful for those seeking to confirm that a doctoral program is an accredited institution.
Navigating the Ph.D. Application Process
Navigating the Ph.D. Application Process Part I by The PhD Project
Navigating the Ph.D. Application Process Part II by The PhD Project
Tracking Graduate School Applications
Friendly Advice for Ph.D. Applicants
Knowing When You're Ready to Apply to Grad School by Casey Calhoun
Applying to Graduate School and Research Fellowships by The Ebony Tower
Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship (MMUF) Program:
The MMUF program is designed to encourage fellows from underrepresented minority groups to enter Ph.D. programs that prepare students for professorial careers. Undergraduate students are encouraged to apply through their respective universities.
Ronald E. McNair Post-baccalaureate Achievement Program:
The McNair Scholars Program is designed to prepare undergraduate students for doctoral studies through involvement in research and other scholarly activities. McNair participants are either first-generation college students with financial need, or members of a group that is traditionally underrepresented in graduate education and have demonstrated strong academic potential. The goal of the McNair Scholars Program is to increase graduate degree awards for students from underrepresented segments of society.
Research In Color Foundation Fellowships:
The Research In Color (RIC) Foundation is an incorporated nonprofit organization that is dedicated to increasing the number of Ph.D. students of
color in economics and economics-adjacent disciplines, and amplifying meaningful economic and policy research on communities of color. RIC
accomplishes this goal by matching URMs looking to pursue doctoral degrees in these fields with seasoned professionals who serve as mentors.
Through its program of fellowships, the Ford Foundation seeks to increase the diversity of the nation’s college and university faculties by increasing their ethnic and racial diversity, maximize the educational benefits of diversity, and increase the number of professors who can and will use diversity as a resource for enriching the education of all students. Predoctoral fellowships are awarded in a national competition administered by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine on behalf of the Ford Foundation.
Annual stipend: $27,000 for three years
An invitation to attend the Conference of Ford Fellows
Access to Ford Fellow Regional Liaisons—a network of former Ford Fellows who have volunteered to provide mentoring and support to current Fellows—and access to other networking resources
The National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP) recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students
who are pursuing research-based master’s and doctoral degrees in fields within NSF’s mission. The GRFP provides up to three years of support for
the graduate education of individuals who have demonstrated their potential for significant achievements in science and engineering research.
The GRFP supports over 100 subfields. For the 2020 competition, NSF received over 13,000 applications and made approximately 2,000 fellowships
offers. The GRFP encourages applications from underrepresented groups, including women, minorities, persons with disabilities, and veterans, in
order to broaden and diversify those participating in science and engineering.
Five year fellowship period with three years of financial support
Annual stipend of $34,000
Cost-of-education allowance of $12,000 to the institution
No post-graduate study service requirement
Access to supplemental funding to sustain research while on medical deferral (e.g., family leave)
The Paul & Daisy Soros Fellowships for New Americans program honors the contributions of immigrants and children of immigrants to the United
States. Each year, they invest in the graduate education of 30 New Americans—immigrants and children of immigrants—who are poised to make
significant contributions to U.S. society, culture or their academic field. Each Fellow receives up to $90,000 in financial support over two years,
and they join a lifelong community of New American Fellows.
Pre-Doctoral Research Programs
PREDOC is a consortium of universities and research institutions whose mission is to foster a talented and diverse population of researchers in the
quantitative social sciences, with a particular focus on predoctoral programs in economics departments and business schools.
The ultimate objective of Pre-Doctoral programs is to provide faculty with the best possible support for innovative research. PREDOC believes that
the best way to ensure this excellence is to recruit pre-docs from diverse backgrounds and life experiences, and to create inclusive workplaces
where all scholars, at any point in their academic development, will thrive.
The consortium also aims to increase the diversity of the academic pipeline as a whole through this predoctoral focus. With this objective in
mind, all consortium members agree to work together to expand their engagement with diverse populations to increase and diversify the pool of
pre-doctoral candidates, including potential visits to Minority-Serving and Historically Black Colleges and Universities to inform students of these
Harvard Business School Pre-Doctoral RAs
Pre-Doctoral Research Associates are an integral part of the HBS community who typically complete two, 1-year terms with more than one
faculty member, supporting analytics, quantitative research, and field research, for a broad range of faculty initiated studies in areas such as
finance, strategy, and behavioral science.
Appropriate candidates will demonstrate strong GPAs from leading academic institutions, and for some roles, should be familiar with either
data manipulation tools such as STATA, Python, MATLAB or R, or other methodologies such as lab experience or experimental design.
RAs enjoy a salary that is extremely competitive for the field. Salaries cover a broad range and are determined using a consistent
methodology that takes into account a hire’s education level, work experience, and technical skills. In addition to offering a substantial
benefits package that includes generous healthcare options and paid vacation for most full- and part-time RAs, HBS is home to a community
of enthusiastic, motivated individuals who believe in what they do.
Columbia Business School Pre-Doctoral Research Fellows Program:
The Pre-doctoral Research Fellows Program at Columbia Business School position provides an opportunity to gain experience in academic or business research, with a special focus on fields such as Accounting, Decision, Risk & Operations, Economics, Finance, Management, and Marketing divisions. This provides the post-baccalaureate researcher with the ideal preparation for a Ph.D. program or other graduate study. Alumni have been placed at top-tier business schools and economics programs across the country.
Under the guidance of CBS faculty, the pre-doctoral research fellows take an active role in multiple research projects in various stages from conception through publication. The work may include, but is not limited to:
Quantitative and qualitative research and analysis
Coordination and management of information and data
Work on other projects
The most successful candidates may also be considered for co-authorship on a research project. In addition to being mentored by CBS's leading researchers, predoctoral research fellows have the opportunity to take courses in business, economics, mathematics, computer science, statistics, and data science. They are expected to attend research seminars and will be integrated into the CBS research community. After the first year, the faculty provide mentoring and guidance as the pre-doctoral research fellows navigate the Ph.D. application process.
Stanford GSB Research Fellows Program:
The Stanford GSB Research Fellows Program offers a unique pre-doctoral educational opportunity for high-potential individuals to come to Stanford to participate in the intellectual life at Stanford GSB and the university. Fellows will have the opportunity to:
Work closely with top faculty in the field on empirical research papers.
Take doctoral-level courses in business, economics, statistics, math, or related fields.
Regularly attend field seminars.
Access a rich intellectual and cultural campus life.
This two-year fellowship is designed for individuals wanting to gain valuable training and experience toward a career in academic research before applying to a PhD program in business and related fields. Fellows receive exposure to the various fields of study at the Stanford GSB.
Research coordinators for the Stanford GSB Behavioral Lab help facilitate research for GSB faculty and doctoral students who conduct behavioral
Kellogg Behavioral and Empirical Research Fellowships:
Research Fellows at the Kellogg School of Management serve as full-time staff who help facilitate research for Kellogg faculty and doctoral
students who conduct behavioral and empirical research. Fellows will have the opportunity to:
Work closely with top faculty in the field on behavioral research papers.
Take doctoral-level courses in business, economics, statistics, math, or related fields.
Regularly attend field seminars.
Access a rich intellectual and cultural campus life.
Earn a living stipend of $50,000/year + health insurance.
The WashU Olin Pre-Doctoral Research Fellows Program:
The WashU Olin Pre-Doctoral Research Fellows Program is a one-year full-time program beginning in July. The fellowship offers tuition and a living stipend ($25,000 in 2019-2020). As non-matriculated, non-degree students at Washington University in St. Louis, Fellows have access to the rich resources that WashU offers. Fellows will be provided with a work space that is co-located with WashU Olin PhD students. Fellows are expected to fully participate in the intellectual life at WashU Olin and the university.
Yale offers a wonderful post-bacc/pre-doc for seniors interested in the humanities, social sciences, and sciences. The goal of the 1-year ESI-PREP experience is to provide program participants with a foundation of knowledge and skills necessary to be successful graduate students. Specific objectives for the program participants are:
To experience life as a graduate student at a major research university, taking courses, doing research and receiving mentoring alongside first year PhD students.
To study an educational curriculum that consists of research literature seminars, graduate school and career workshops, and GRE preparation.
This initiative is open to recent college graduates in all divisions (e.g. humanities, social sciences, sciences) with a strong desire to pursue a Ph.D. Candidates must be US citizens or US permanent residents. All are welcome to apply. Recent graduates who are from backgrounds that have been underrepresented in their chosen fields of study (e.g., historically underrepresented minority students, first-generation college graduates, students from economically disadvantaged backgrounds, or women in some STEM fields) are strongly encouraged to apply.
The Michigan Ross Bridges to Doctoral Fellows Program:
The Ross Bridges to Doctoral Fellows Program offers a 12-month, full-time certificate that prepares individuals who hold a bachelor’s or master’s degree to successfully transition into full-time doctoral studies.
The Ph.D. Excellence Initiative (PhDEI):
The Ph.D. Excellence Initiative (PhDEI) is a post-baccalaureate program that identifies high achieving students of color and prepares them for the
rigors of pursuing a Ph.D. in economics. Research Fellows work and study in New York City for the duration of two years under the guidance of
Peter Blair Henry, W. R. Berkley Professor of Economics and Finance, and Dean Emeritus of the NYU Stern School of Business.
BYU’s School of Accountancy offers a specialized Ph.D. Prep Track as part of the Masters of Accountancy degree. The program is designed to prepare students to enroll in a Ph.D. program in accounting at another university after finishing their master’s degree.
Pre-Doctoral Program at NYU Stern:
The Stern Pre-Doctoral program is intended to prepare select students to apply to Ph.D. programs in Business, at Stern or elsewhere, and promotes a diverse, scholarly environment to encourage promising individuals from under-represented or non-typical backgrounds (personal, academic, or employment) to enter the academic profession.
In the course of the program, each student will gain a thorough grounding in calculus, matrix algebra, basic and intermediate statistics, and basic and intermediate economics. Students will also have the opportunity to engage in faculty research. Additionally, pre-doctoral students will receive advisement in the Ph.D. application process from the Doctoral Program and Stern faculty. Students demonstrating outstanding academic ability will be encouraged to apply for the Stern Ph.D. program for the following year; otherwise, students will have Stern’s support in applying to other programs.
The Pre-Doctoral Program is a full-time, in-residence, non-degree program. Applicants must have a Bachelors degree (or will complete one by the time the program starts) and be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident. Applicants should apply through the regular Ph.D. Program application. A full-tuition scholarship is provided. Some living stipend and student health insurance may also be provided.
Chicago Booth – Fama-Miller Center for Research in Finance:
Fama-Miller Center for Research in Finance offers a unique pre-doctoral opportunity for research professionals with undergraduate degrees or
masters degrees in economics and finance or in fields with related skills such as statistics, mathematics or computer science.
The two-year research professional program is designed to be an ideal transitional position for recent graduates who are interested in going onto
a top Ph.D. program in finance or economics.
Fama-Miller Center research professionals have the opportunity to work closely with top finance faculty, take one discounted course per quarter,
attend the finance workshop and seminar and participate in the Fama-Miller Center seminar for research professionals. The research professional
will work closely with Booth finance faculty members and learn to provide research assistance for substantial research projects as well as
receive mentoring. The position will provide excellent preparation for entry into a Ph.D. program or for conducting other analytical based
Chicago Booth – Research Staff Program:
In the Chicago Booth Research Staff Program, research professionals (RPs) and principal researchers (PRs) typically spend two to three years
gaining firsthand experience with the research process, working closely with their faculty supervisor.
Research professionals have gone on to top Ph.D. programs in economics and other social sciences, including programs at MIT, Harvard, Stanford,
Princeton, Wharton, Berkeley, and UChicago. Principal researchers have entered the academic job market or taken industry positions.
Research staff build invaluable and collaborative relationships with Booth faculty and fellow RPs and PRs by engaging in UChicago’s rigorous
intellectual environment. While at Booth, research staff hone their skill sets and engage in a bevy of programs—from coding workshops to writing
seminars—that prepare them to undertake independent research.
Harvard GSAS Research Scholars:
The GSAS Research Scholar Initiative is a non-degree granting post-baccalaureate program that provides mentored research and training for individuals interested in pursuing doctoral studies. In the GSAS Research Scholar Initiative post-baccalaureate program, Research Scholars work with a Harvard faculty member as a research assistant, participate in professional development seminars, and receive GRE preparation support. In addition, scholars may take undergraduate and/or graduate coursework in preparation for doctoral studies. While GSAS cannot guarantee admission to Harvard or peer doctoral programs, the goal of the initiative is to enhance scholars’ competitiveness when applying to a doctoral program.
California Pre-Doctoral Program:
The California Pre-Doctoral Program is designed to increase diversity within the pool of university faculty by supporting the doctoral aspirations
of students in the CSU. In 2021-22 the California Pre-Doctoral Program awarded funds to approximately 76 juniors, seniors and
graduate students in the CSU.
These funds are designed to enable current students to explore and prepare to succeed in doctoral programs in their chosen field of study. Awards
are based on competitive review of student applications and given to current upper-division or graduate students who, in the judgment of the
review panel, demonstrate academic excellence while experiencing economic or educational disadvantage, as well as committed to a career in
teaching and research at the college or university level.
All matriculated students enrolled on a CSU campus are eligible to participate.
Columbia University's Bridge to Ph.D. Program in STEM:
The Bridge to the Ph.D. Program in STEM (includes Psychology) is designed to increase the participation of students from underrepresented groups in Ph.D. programs in STEM disciplines. The Bridge Program is an intensive research, academic, and mentoring experience for post-baccalaureates seeking to strengthen their graduate school applications and to prepare for the transition into Ph.D. programs.
Summer Research Opportunities
The Yale Internship in Organizational Behavior:
The Yale Internship in Organizational Behavior enrolls aspiring researchers from all over the world in an immersive 8-week program designed and provides them with the experience and skills necessary to make an informed decision about pursuing a Ph.D. in the social sciences. One of the central priorities of the internship is to provide training for students from historically underrepresented/nontraditional backgrounds and academic paths.
The internship program starts annually in mid-June and finishes in mid-August in New Haven, CT at Yale University. Faculty from the School of Management as well as the Department of Psychology at Yale University mentor interns throughout the summer through an intensive research project. Interns present their research at the Summer Management and Organizations Research Experience Seminar (S’MORES) Conference.
Summer Research Internship @ Columbia Business School:
This program provides interns with the opportunity to work on a research project with CBS’s leading faculty and researchers in finance, economics, marketing, management, decision sciences, operations, accounting, and data analytics. The program spans the entire summer and is fully-funded.
Organizational Science Summer Institute (OSSI):
OSSI is designed to provide underrepresented undergraduate students with a unique educational opportunity in research and graduate studies. This week-long program is fully-funded and provides a small stipend to fellows for their participation. This is a great way to forge professional and personal relationships with other attendees and professors.
American Economic Association Summer and Scholarship Program (AEASP):
The AEASP is an intensive, 2-month residential program. AEASP offers talented undergraduates seriously considering post-graduate studies in economics, the opportunity to develop and solidify their math and other technical skills to enable them to successfully meet the high demands of academically challenging doctoral programs.
The Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE):
The SURE program is a summer internship program that takes place on The University of Texas at Austin campus for undergraduate students who are interested in research in psychology and are currently attending a college or university in the state of Texas. The program provides hands-on training that will make students more competitive for top doctoral training programs. This opportunity is fully-funded, with housing, and a stipend.
Summer Research - Early Identification Program (SR-EIP):
SR-EIP is a fully paid summer internship that provides undergraduates with training and mentoring in the principles underlying the conduct of research and prepares them to pursue competitive applications to Ph.D. or M.D.-Ph.D. programs.
Pre-Doctoral Conferences for URMs
The PhD Project was founded upon the premise that advancements in workplace diversity could be propelled forward by increasing the diversity of business school faculty. The flagship event for The PhD Project is the annual conference for potential doctoral students. At this 2-day conference, potential students can network with doctoral students, business school representatives, professors and sponsor organizations. The PhD Project supports students throughout the application process, offers application fee waivers and supports students who go on to pursues a business Ph.D. throughout their career, fostering diverse networks of diverse, driven and successful minority Ph.D. candidates and professors.
The PhD Project offers invaluable, insider information on the application processes and necessary steps in pursuing a Business PhD. The event culminates with a university showcase where attendees can chat with representatives about their programs. If you are a URM who is interested in pursuing a Ph.D. in a business-related field, I highly recommend applying to attend this conference.
Introduction to Diversity in Doctoral Education and Scholarship (IDDEAS) Program:
IDDEAS is a two-day program that introduces outstanding undergraduates to the field of business academia and research. The aim of IDDEAS is to create a diverse doctoral student environment and, in turn, a diverse faculty population. Host campuses include IDDEAS@Wharton, IDDEAS@Stanford/Berkeley, IDDEAS@Kellogg/Booth, and IDDEAS@MIT. These conferences are fully funded and a very intimate way to network with faculty and doctoral students, as only ~10 applicants are admitted to each cohort.
Southern Management Association (SMA) Pre-Doctoral Consortium:
The consortium is held in conjunction with SMA’s annual conference, allowing students considering a doctoral degree to connect with faculty and Ph.D. students in both formal and informal sessions. Attendees selected to participate will be awarded a $500 stipend to help defray travel and lodging costs.
The Sadie Collective addresses the pipeline and pathway problem for Black women in economics, finance, data science, and policy. The Sadie Collective will gather hundreds of Black women and allies from across the nation to hear from trailblazing Black women in the industry during our four day hybrid conference experience in Washington, D.C. Events will be hosted at The Brookings Institution and The Urban Institute.
The general conference program consists of 6 panels, 5 workshops, 1 keynote address, 3 remarks/plenary sessions, 1 research reception, 1 award ceremony and 1 community service event. Whether an attendee is virtual or in-person, the curated experience will pair them with mentors and they will hear from speakers from a variety of fields.
Diversity in Psychology Preview Days by Psychology Undergraduate Advising at the University of Minnesota
Diversity in Psychology Recruitment Programs by SPSP
Support for URMs
A Field Guide to Grad School: Uncovering the Hidden Curriculum by Jessica Calarco
Note: 30% off from @PrincetonUPress with code 1GEN as of November, 2021
Student Discounts and Deals
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Researchers want to understand how people feel, think and behave. On Prolific, you get paid cash for taking part in engaging research (no silly points or prize draws).
The HBS Behavioral Lab participant pool contains individuals who are interested in voluntarily participating in research studies. Researchers using this pool conduct research on a wide range of topics, including decision making, group interactions, and economic behavior. Each study has a unique research purpose and research team that will be described in further detail within the study’s posting on their website.
The Harvard Public Study Pool serves to introduce students, life-long learners, and the community to the processes of psychological research. Harvard researchers gain valuable experience working with the volunteer community.
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UNiDAYS is a discount website that is available free of charge to students worldwide. Current students in higher education can sign up with UNiDAYS to get discounted deals on products, clothes, food, and services.
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Note: Be sure to check your university-specific benefits for additional discounts and deals!
This page offers support and comprehensive guides for those who are interested in pursuing a Ph.D. in a business-related field.
A sincere thank you the scholars who have contributed to the resources listed on this page and towards efforts to diversify academia.