PhD or DBA – That’s the question…
At Swiss School of Management, you can pursue the highest academic distinction one can obtain. We have created two pathways towards this crown on your professional career. The first is the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), the highest regarded title when it comes to research professionals. The second is the Doctor of Business Administration (DBA), the highest level of professional and academic knowledge with an applied character.
Quality of doctoral programs at SSM
Our doctoral programs are relevant, rich, academically valid, and in line with national and international standards. It fulfills the criteria of the process of harmonization of higher education in Europe and the learning outcomes of the European Qualification Framework EQF-Level 8. The programs are internationally accredited by IACBE, amongst others.
During both doctoral tracks, candidates are supervised by highly skilled academia with a track-record in their field of ability. All supervisors are PhD holders and are assigned to candidates based on their research topic. The supervisor coaches and aids the doctoral candidate all the way. Doctoral candidates are confronted with essential coursework to work on research skills. All course material is found on our e-learning platform. During the doctoral journey, candidates are supported by their supervisor and a dedicated mentor.
Start and finish when-ever you are ready
Due to the nature of our doctoral programs, doctoral candidates can start through-out the year. There are no admissions deadlines or other defined start-dates. A doctoral candidate can tailor their learning path to his needs, following his own pace. Throughout the academic year, relevant workshops are held. These workshops are not mandatory and are always digitally available. You are the manager of your doctoral journey. Workshops are all over Europe and Africa and if the situation allows you to attend, you are more than welcome.
Swiss School of Management and SSM Research Center
To ensure quality and focus, SSM started the SSM Research Center. SSM Research Center sees to it that doctoral candidates are supervised properly, and academic standards are met. Digital libraries, a high-tech e-learning system, live webinars, Q&A sessions with experts, and global workshops are available through SSM Research Center.
About the Doctor of Business Administration (DBA)
The DBA program is for those who want to explore and use the maximum of one’s potential in a certain field of business. It is a two-year program (3,360 hours of study) that can be combined with work. A DBA candidate does fundamental research towards solving a practical issue in the business world. Typical DBA research topics are related to strategic management, marketing, finance, high-performance organizations, operations management, or the business environment. Typical outcomes are practical solutions with a real impact on the researched subject.
Are you a DBA candidate?
DBA candidates are often ambitious advanced professionals already, so their motives are more of a personal kind – rather than professional. They have been working over 10-15 years in the business area (consultants, financial services, IT, or entrepreneurs), giving them easy access to datasets, and are looking for an intellectual challenge. Often DBA candidates are holders of the MBA title and they value flexibility during their studies. DBA candidates regularly continue their jobs whilst doing their studies. This gives them also the opportunity to self-fund the program. They are interested in traveling and exchanging experiences with peers.
About the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
The PhD is, just as the DBA, the highest academic distinction one can obtain. The fundamental difference is that the PhD designed for (future) research professionals. It is a three-year program (5,040 hours of study). SSM has designed a PhD program on economics and management; candidates perform fundamental research on social and economic development. The academic purpose is in contributing to knowledge through creating of new theories, or extensions of existing theories. The PhD degree requires the demonstration of findings and conclusions based on data obtained from sound methodologies and couched in relevant and recent literature on the topic of research. We encourage you to relate your research to contemporary debates on issues that affect our economies and societies.
An option is to obtain a Master of Research (MRes) on the fly through completion of additional courses on top of the mandatory ones and by the successful defense of a high-quality research proposal. More information upon request.
Are you a PhD candidate?
PhD students are critical, dedicated, curious, creative thinkers that have an affinity with doing research. They see themselves doing research as a profession, they have the ability to function as a thought-leader and communicate with an audience. Of course, PhD candidates have to have enough intellectual and emotional bandwidth to focus on something for multiple years. They are committed to the advancement of human knowledge.