PhD in Business Administration

The primary objective of the ABRI full-time PhD Programme is to offer its candidates rigorous training for an academic career, supporting them to become future leaders in business research and education. We achieve this objective by offering a programme which includes coursework and supervised PhD research.

Entry requirements
Possession of a Master’s degree is a prerequisite for entering a PhD position within ABRI. In general there are two trajectories, each involving 5 years in total:

  • 2 year accredited research master (MSc/MPhil) + 3 year PhD position
  • 1 year ‘regular’, accredited specialist master (MSc/MA) + 4 year PhD position

PhD candidates are mostly employed by the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, School of Business and Economics (SBE), either financed by the university, NWO (The Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research), and/or the industry. Four year PhD positions are only (co-)financed by external sources. Candidates may also be employed elsewhere or carry out research in his or her own time, but we will usually refer these candidates to our part-time PhD programme, or otherwise, they need to meet a number of conditions. For instance, per January 2015, new candidates are obliged to spend at least 30EC on training and development (coursework). And, in order to work in the Netherlands, non-EU candidates must have a residence permit specifically for this purpose.

Please contact us for specific information.

PhD research project
Carrying out PhD research is the most important task of a doctoral candidate. The PhD research proposal can be submitted by either:

  • (one of the) faculty members, or
  • the candidate who intends to carry out the research

The proposals are input for the application procedure for a PhD position, so most likely PhD candidates will have finalized a proposal during their Research Master, or they apply on an existing proposal. PhD candidates are expected to begin working on their PhD research projects from the first day on the job. Their work primarily consists of designing, executing and publishing their research in order to be able to defend their PhD dissertation in time, and oftentimes they will have some teaching obligations (this depends on their appointment). Many PhD candidates also aim to spend some time abroad during their appointment.

The PhD research can adopt any of the business research methods, and include a single or multiple studies. The research should result in a PhD dissertation that follows all regulations of Vrije Universiteit Amstrerdam. The design of the candidates’ research project should be agreed upon with their supervisors. The ABRI course curriculum is designed to assist PhD candidates in carrying out their PhD research.