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The University of Essex is one of the UK's leading academic institutions, ranked ninth nationally in the most recent Research Assessment Exercise (RAE).
Our PhD Management draws on our rich expertise in critical approaches to understanding the contemporary workplace and connecting global concerns with local practices, with current students ranging from recent graduates to experienced practitioners to artists.
Recent events in the global economy have meant that organizational and political stakeholders across the world have begun to pay attention to the consequences of power relations, informal collusion and the impact of organizational narratives and rhetoric on organizational practices. In providing expertise across a range of business disciplines, including sustainability, leadership, identity and brand management, our programme allows you to cater your studies to a profession or sector of your own choice, whilst developing a high-quality research agenda.
With the ability to provide a highly individualised and original research project developing the skills and expertise desired by each doctoral candidate, our PhD Management has a proven track record of training the next generation of social scientists who inform future theory, policy and practice in relation to work, organizations and the new economy.
We also offer an MPhil and a Masters by dissertation in this subject.
Your research degree gives you the chance to investigate your chosen topic in real depth and reach a profound understanding. In communicating that understanding, through a thesis or other means, you have a rare opportunity to generate knowledge. You develop new high-level skills, enhance your professional development and build new networks. A PhD can open doors to many careers.
You will be allocated two supervisors, who will provide you with the guidance and support to help you achieve your individual research goals and produce a high quality piece of doctoral work.
The support provided by your supervisor is a key feature of your research student experience and you will have regular one-to-one meetings to discuss progress on your research. Initially, your supervisor will help you develop your research topic and plan the training required in order to successful complete your thesis. You will meet with your supervisors at least once a month and you are usually required to submit work beforehand in order for feedback to be provided during your meeting.
Twice a year, you will have a supervisory board meeting, which provides a more formal opportunity to discuss your progress and agree your plans for the next six months.
A key feature of Essex Business School is our commitment to the career development of our doctoral students, Our supervisors regularly co-author publications with their doctoral students, as well as providing advice on the development of transferable skills and guidance on applying for jobs.
How you will study
Upon arrival at our Essex Business School, you undertake an intense induction programme and be introduced to both your supervisors, who will mentor you through your time with us. You will be introduced to your fellow PhD students and staff through departmental research seminars, as well as attend advanced research methods modules and workshops. You will also be introduced to a final-year student, who will act as your buddy for the first six months and provide you with a point of contact for any informal questions you have, and help you settle into your doctoral programme.
During your first year, you have regular meetings and are often asked to write up your ideas or notes of what you have read in the intervening period in order to help establish good writing practices a key skill in doctoral work. By the end of your first year, you should have a solid understanding of the key debates in the relevant field of study and research questions that positions your original contribution to knowledge. Our finance students are also expected to have made substantial progress on their first research paper.
In your second year, you are likely to finalise the design of your own research project and either collect primary data, or access and analyse large scale datasets, or make progress on your second research paper. You then work closely with staff members in an interactive environment where you receive feedback on your ideas and findings on a regular basis. You are encouraged to develop your own research ideas independently during this year. However, even if you are undertaking fieldwork in another location, your supervisors will be in close contact through e-mail or telephone. During this time, your relationship with your supervisor is likely to develop from close supervision from a senior member of staff to more of a critical friend, who acts as a sounding board for your ideas.
In your final year, you continue to analyse your own research data and further refine your original contribution to knowledge. You then undertake the process of collating your knowledge of the field, your theoretical ideas and your research findings together to produce a thesis of around 50-80k words. Our finance students are also expected to make substantial progress on their third research paper. You often attend conferences during this year, supported financially by our Essex Business School, in order to test out your research findings and thesis on an international stage. As well as helping to shape your work into a dissertation ready for examination, your supervisors will help you think about future career plans, whether that is within academia or more practitioner orientated.
Finalising your PhD
Your Essex Business School full-time doctorate is a 36 month programme. At the end of your 36 months, you may be allowed up to 12 months to complete the writing up of your PhD. Creating a 50,000-80,000 word thesis is a huge task so, in order to ensure satisfactory progress is made and the quality of your work is of a doctoral level, we put a number of support mechanisms in place.
All our doctoral candidates are required to undertake a progress board every six months where you, your supervisors and an independent chair mark your progress and set objectives for the next period. You will also be encouraged to take part in peer group debates and discussions.
Our doctoral candidates also give annual presentations of their research to an audience of fellow students and staff members, and are expected to attend departmental seminars, giving your the opportunity to talk with international experts in the field. Seminars and conferences
Within our Essex Business School, special attention is devoted to fostering the research of our graduate students and integrating them into the research community. We run an open seminar series that all our students can attend.
We encourage our students to attend the doctoral colloquia of international conferences and publish their papers in our Essex Business School working papers series, either co-authored with their supervisor or by themselves. When attending conferences in your second and third-years, care is taken to ensure that, when possible, a member of staff also attends the conference to ensure you can be introduced into academic networks.
Recent successes have included one of our students work being published in peer-reviewed international journals following presentations and winning Best Doctoral Paper awards at an international conference.
For research study within our Essex Business School, we normally require a good Masters degree, or equivalent, in a relevant discipline. A well developed research proposal is also essential.
However, if you do not have a Masters degree, we also offer a four-year integrated PhD, where your first year is spent doing a Masters before embarking on your research. This preparatory year ensures you develop your knowledge before embarking on your independent research.
If English is not your first language, then we will require you to have IELTS 6.5 or equivalent.
English Language RequirementsIELTS band: 6.5
IMPORTANT NOTE: Since April 2014 the ETS tests (including TOEFL and TOEIC) are no longer accepted for Tier 4 visa applications to the United Kingdom. The university might still accept these tests to admit you to the university, but if you require a Tier 4 visa to enter the UK and begin your degree programme, these tests will not be sufficient to obtain your Visa.
The IELTS test is most widely accepted by universities and is also accepted for Tier 4 visas to the UK- learn more.
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