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Strengths of the Program

Our Strength: Our Program

The PhD Program in Strategic Management is designed to prepare students for research-oriented careers in universities, government or public policy institutes. The structure of the program reflects its interdisciplinary philosophy and our belief in rigorous discipline-based training.

In a world characterized by political instability, growing globalization, escalating competition, and rapid social and technological change, strategic management of business organizations is becoming increasingly vital to their success. The PhD Program in Strategic Management is designed to prepare students for research-oriented careers in universities; the program may also be suitable for candidates seeking research careers in government or public policy institutes.

Effective research in Strategic Management requires a thorough grounding in both the academic area itself, as well as in the main disciplinary perspectives from which it derives - primarily economics, and sociology. In order to develop a strong grounding in relevant theory and methodology, PhD students in Strategic Management therefore take courses and conduct research with students and faculty both within the Rotman School in other departments across the University of Toronto.

The structure of the program reflects its interdisciplinary philosophy and our belief in rigorous discipline-based training. Core courses led by Rotman faculty focus on understanding the Strategic Management literature, research problems and techniques. In addition, all Rotman Strategic Management students take doctoral-level courses in economics, sociology, and econometrics. Outside of these core requirements,students are able to develop a specialized program of study that meets their individual objectives.

View the Rotman Strategy PhD Brochure

Contact the PhD Program at Rotman

Contact the Strategic Management PhD Coordinator Bill McEvily

What Makes the Program Unique

One unique element of the Rotman Strategic Management PhD is that students become involved in research from day one of the program. At the time of admission, each student is assigned a faculty sponsor for their first two years. Students begin discussing research with their sponsor in the fall of their first year with the goal of beginning a joint research project by the summer after the first year. That research will typically carry over into the second year and the summer after the second year. This research apprenticeship will give students hands on experience in doing research that will better enable them to embark on their own projects once they have completed their coursework.

After the end of the second year, both sponsors and students can decide whether they wish to convert the relationship to one of advisor-advisee for the purpose of the dissertation. However, students always have the option to choose another advisor if they feel someone else fits better with their research interests.

Other Strengths of the Program

  • A truly world-class faculty known for its unusually strong balance between economists and organizational theorists, providing disciplinary depth and collaborative breadth;
  • An enduring tradition of faculty-student collaboration on research and teaching with students encouraged to work with multiple faculty members.
  • Regular PhD get-togethers, where students enjoy a unique opportunity to interact with their professors and share ideas with each other in an informal setting.
  • A strong faculty to student ratio that provides plenty of opportunities for students to work as teaching and research assistants
  • Full funding for all PhD students through a financial aid package that fully covers tuition and provides an attractive stipend that can continue for up to five years in the program.
  • Location: the Rotman School is in the heart of Toronto, North America’s most diverse city and its third-largest financial centre, with important innovation clusters in industries ranging from aerospace to telecommunications and biotech.
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