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Strategy

 
    Program Requirements
  The program requirements leading to a PhD in Strategy involves three distinct stages:
coursework leading to a qualifying exam
second year research paper of publishable quality and
dissertation research.
   
  COURSEWORK & QUALIFYING EXAM
  Coursework typically takes about four semesters to complete and involves about four (4) courses per semester. These courses span four to five categories:
 

1) strategy core and topic classes
2) allied area classes
3) discipline classes
4) methods classes
5) breadth classes ( if necessary)

Example Course Schedule
Qualifying Exam
 
  1) Strategy core and topic classes.
Students are expected to take all the following classes over a two (2) year period. The core classes are offered every year, while electives are offered every other year. At least one strategy class is offered every semester

Core
Theoretical Perspective in Strategy
Empirical Research in Strategy

Topic
Technology and Strategy
Theory of the Firm
Sociological Approach to Strategy
Incentives and Corporate Governance

  2) Allied area classes. Organization Theory
Industrial Organization
  3) Discipline classes.
Students are encouraged to pick one discipline for specialization. The disciplines typically chosen are economics, political science, psychology, or sociology. They are expected to take four to five course in this discipline. Students have considerable flexibility in putting together a set of classes tailored to their strengths and interests. These are a sample of courses students have taken in the past. This is only an indicative set.

Economics
Mathematics for Economics (Econ 600)
Microeconomics (Econ 601-604)

Sociology
Economic Sociology (Soc 515)
Theories and Practices of Sociology (Soc 505-506)

  4) Methods classes.
Students are expected to take the research methods class offered in the Ross Business School and, in addition, take appropriate statistical methods classes offered in any of the disciplines above. Methods classes that students often taken are:

Econometrics (Econ 671, 672 & 675)

Statistics Courses in Other Departments
(PolSci 599/699, Soc 510/610)

  5) Breadth classes ( if necessary)
Students without MBA degrees are encouraged to take at least one course from each of the allied areas of the Ross School of Business: Finance, Accounting, Marketing and Management and Organizations.
Corporate Finance (Fin 551)
Financial Accounting (Acc 501)

 

  Example Course Schedules
  Economic Track with no MBA
  Semester 1
Semester 2 Semester 3
Semester 4
  Core & Topic
Empirical Research in Strategy
  (Strat 897)
Theoretical
Perspective
in Strategy
  (Strat 898)

Discipline
Math for Economists
  (Econ 600)
Microeconomic
Theory I
  (Econ 601)
Microeconomic
Theory II
  (Econ 602)

Core & Topic
Strategy 897
Strategy 898

Allied Areas
Applied Industrial Economics
  (BA875)

Discipline
Microeconomic
Theory I
  (Econ 603)
Microeconomic
Theory II
  (Econ 604)

Method
Econometric
Analysis II
  (Econ 672)

Allied Areas
Economic Sociology
  (Soc 515)

Method
Research Methods
in the Behavioral
& Social Sciences
   (BA 870)

Breath
Financial
Management
  (Fin 551)
Doctoral Seminar
in Organizational
Theory
  (MO899)

Core & Topic
Strategy 897
Strategy 898

Method
Applied
Microeconometrics
   (Econ 675)

Breadth
Principles of
Financial Accounting
   (Acc 501)

         
Sociology Track
  Semester 1
Semester 2 Semester 3
Semester 4
 

Core & Topic
Theoretical Perspective sin Strategy
   (Strat 898)
Empirical Research in Strategy
   (Strat 897)

Discipline
Economic Sociology
   (Soc 515)

Method
Methods
   (Soc 510)

Core & Topic
Strategy Seminar
   (Strat 897)
Strategy Seminar
   (Strat 898)

Allied Areas
Methodological Courses in Business Research
   (BA 850, BA 860)

Discipline
Sociology PhD Seminar
   (Special Topics)

Method
Methods
   (Soc 610)

Allied Areas
Sociology PhD Seminar
   (Special Topics)
Psychology PhD Seminar
   (Social Psych)

Method
Research Methods in the Behavioral & Social Sciences    (BA 870)

Breadth
Doctoral Seminar in Organizational Theory
   (MO 899)

Core & Topic
Strategy Seminar
  (Strat 897)
Strategy Seminar
   (Strat 898)

Methods
Sociology Methods Elective
  (such as Categorical Data Analysis)

 

    Qualifying Exam
 

The primary purpose of the qualifying exam is to ensure that the Ross doctoral student is a discerning consumer of research in strategy. Discerning consumption involves developing a parsimonious map of research in strategy and being able to locate research questions, theories, and perspectives within this overall map. This ability is critical to productive scholarship.

Students are required to take their written qualifying exam (open book) to advance to candidacy at the end of the second year of the PhD program, generally in early June. Preparation for the qualifying exam builds on previously taken strategy classes. This involves significant additional reading beyond courses themselves to add depth of understanding in the main research areas of strategy.

A qualifying exam committee comprised of four to six (4-6) faculty design exam questions. Students are allowed three to five (3-5) days to answers all questions.

 

    SECOND YEAR RESEARCH PAPER
 

Purpose:
   Develop student’s capability to conceive and execute an independent research project.
   Begin to develop an independent research stream.
   Prepare student for the dissertation.
   Produce research that can be presented at a top strategy conference
      (e.g., Academy of Management or Strategic Management Society) and
       published in a top-tier strategy journal.

Specific Requirements
Prior to advancing to the dissertation stage, students are required to conduct an empirical research project with the aspiration of publishing a paper from the project in a top-tier strategy journal. The project will be completed under the supervision of two faculty members, one of whom serves as a primary reader (typically the student’s adviser), and the other as a secondary reader. The student is expected to take the lead on the project, in the manner of a lead author. In some cases the student may be sole author of the paper(s) that emerge from the project.

The student must submit a 3-5 page proposal to the readers for their approval by September of their second year. A final paper from the project must also be presented to students and faculty in the brown bag seminar series, and the paper must be approved by the two faculty supervisors by December 31st of the student’s third year in the Doctoral Program. While publication in a top-tier journal is an aspiration of the project, publication is not required for successful completion of the project.

 

    DISSERTATION
  Link here to Rackham Graduate School dissertation information including handbook and guidelines.