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PhD programme As a PhD candidate, you have the freedom to pursue the research you are passionate about. You will be able to use your po­tential to find new discoveries and contribute cut­ting-edge research to your field. At BI we offer a full-time doctoral programme that promotes inno­vation and prepares you for a career at top univer­sities and research institutions. Our candidates receive financial support while in the programme. The doctoral programme leads to the Doctor of Philosophy degree (PhD). We admit highly qualified candidates who develop into researchers over the course of the programme. For 2017 we will offer scholarships for candidates taking a PhD with specialisations in Marketing, Strategic Management and Leadership & Organization. The application deadline is 1 February 2017. As a prospective candidate, you will apply for one of the speciali­ sations. If admitted, you will take courses primarily in your field of study – your specialisation – and be supervised by faculty in this same field. This will help you to develop your research agenda and to progress into a researcher capable of producing research publishable in the top journals in your field. Our academic departments govern the specialisations in the PhD programme. The departments have strong track records of produ­ cing research of high quality. According to the UT Dallas research ranking, the Department of Marketing is currently ranked top 20 in Europe and 2nd in the Nordic countries based on research published in the top marke­ ting journals between 2013 and 2016. The Department of Leadership and Organizational Behavior has been among the top publishing departments at BI for many years, and is also a top publishing department in a European context. Department of Finance is ranked 10th in Europe, and 2nd in the Nordic countries, based on top finance publications between 2005 and 2014 (University of Texas at Dallas rankings). The department has a strong track record of publications in top jour­ nals. Department of Strategy is one of the largest strategy groups in Europe, focusing on strategy, international business and entre­ preneurship. Within these areas, the department has a consistent level of high level publications, increasing our academic impact in Europe, and also globally.


Should you take a PhD?

• Do you want a career at a top university or a research institution? • Are you interested in doing in-depth research and contributing new and valuable insights to your field? • Do you want flexible workdays? • Do you want a challenging but rewarding journey? • Do you want to study alongside top candidates in your field? • Do you want a combination of high quality of life, excellent working conditions and strong support for young researchers? • Do you want to be a part of Norway’s largest and one of Europe’s most productive academic environments in the area of business economics, management and marketing?

Our PhD programme consists of six different specialisations: • Marketing • Strategic Management • Economics • Leadership and Organisation • Finance • Innovation and Entrepreneurship

Programme structure Course component

To provide our candidates with the theoretical knowledge, empirical know-how and methodological skills required to become successful researchers, the PhD programme consists of methodo­ logy courses, specialisation courses and elective courses.


Our PhD candidates regularly attend research seminars. A rese­ arch seminar is an event where the academic departments invite an internationally renowned researcher to present some of his/ her ongoing research. This provides important exposure to the research frontier. PhD candidates who have finished their course work and have started to develop their own research agenda will also present their work at research seminars.

PhD committees and pre-doctoral defense

Our candidates have academic supervisors who help them develop as researchers. When the dissertation’s research questi­ ons are sufficiently well developed, the candidates will hold a pre-doctoral defense in front of a committee. This committee consists of professors from other universities, who will evaluate research progress and give advice on how best to move the rese­ arch forward. The committee will assess whether the candidate is on track to the successful completion of the dissertation.

PhD in brief • Our PhD candidates are temporarily hired by BI, and receive financial support for four years • Our PhD candidates work closely with well-established researchers who actively publish in the most prestigious academic journals • Our PhD candidates develop their own research agenda in close cooperation with their supervisors • Our PhD graduates are well positioned for a career in academia • Our PhD candidates will be a part of BI’s research profile which rests on both disciplinary research and research done in co-operation with industrial sectors and public administration

More about the programme at

Dissertation and final defense

The PhD dissertation will provide contributions to the academic literature. PhD candidates from BI are expected to write a disser­ tation containing research that can be published in the leading academic journals of their field of specialisation. The PhD evaluat­ ion committee will have the final say on whether or not a disserta­ tion is ready for public defense — meaning that the PhD candidate is ready to publicly defend his/her research in front of the PhD evaluation committee, other faculty, family and friends.

Øyvind Norli, Professor, Dean of the Doctoral Programme «With a PhD from BI you will be well prepared for a career at top universities and research institutions. Our PhD candidates develop as researchers under the supervision of internationally renowned BI faculty. The journey is challenging, but very rewarding. When you leave BI as a PhD graduate, you should expect to have contributed new and valuable insights to your field of study.»


Practical information When admitted to our PhD programme, you will receive funding for a period of four years through a position as a PhD candidate. Entry requirements:

• You have at least five years of higher education • You hold a two-year scientific Master degree (120 ECTS) with B average or better • You hold a Master degree that includes thesis work (15 to 30 ECTS) • You hold a Master degree within the broader fields of economics and business administration or an area in which BI offers a PhD specialisation • You hold degree(s) from an accredited institution or an institution recognized by NOKUT (The Norwegian Agency for Quality Assurance in Education) PhD placement The dissertation is clearly an important outcome of several years of research work. However, the most important outcome for our PhD candidates is the employment opportunities that will be available after having defended their thesis. At BI, we emphasise placing our PhD candidates at excellent research universities.

Past PhD candidates have been recruited by: • London Business School • University of Melbourne • IÉSEG School of Management, Lille, France • Alliance Manchester Business School • University of Groningen • Cranfield University • Nanyang Business School • Norwegian Central Bank • Université libre de Bruxelles

Birgitte Grøgaard, PhD alumn’06, Associate Professor in Strategy, University of Calgary

«Pursuing a PhD in the Department of Strategy gave me an opportunity to work closely with internationally recognized scholars in strategy and international management. The faculty members’ enthusiasm and collaborative nature made the experience very rewarding. Upon graduation, BI’s reputation in the field also opened doors for international job opportunities.»


Contact information The PhD Administration deals with practical issues regarding admission and applications. 

 + 47 46 41 00 00

More about our requirements at

Andreea Mitrache,, PhD alumn’15, Assistant Professor of Finance, Toulouse Business School

«The Department of Finance consists of highly skilled and passionate academics, thus making it an excellent environment for studying Finance. There is a close and enriching interaction between the Faculty members and the PhD candidates. The focus is to turn the candidates into good teachers and good researchers with a high intellectual honesty and good work ethics. The course portfolio, the weekly seminars along with the inspiring and supportive community are key ingredients which make this process successful.»

Radu Dimitriu, PhD alumn’10, Lecturer in Strategic Marketing & Sales, School of Management, Cranfield University

«The Marketing Department at BI has scholars with publications in top-notch academic journals. This encourages PhD candidates to aim high in terms of their research ambitions. The school’s excellent international links make it possible to get in touch with and establish research collaborations with world-acclaimed academics. PhD candidates have the chance to represent the Department at the prestigious Sheth Doctoral Consortium, where BI is one of the few European business schools being invited.»


BI Norwegian Business School BI is a independent, specialised university with more than 21,000 students from around the world. BI offers an extensive portfolio of Bachelor, Master, Executive and PhD programmes. The university’s international programmes are taught at the main campus located in the prosperous city of Oslo, capital of Norway. BI’s specialised focus on education and research continues to propel BI forward as a leading business school since its foundation in 1943. The university’s commitment to excellence is reflected in its accre­ ditation by EQUIS since 1999, AMBA since 2013 and AACSB since 2014. With three international accreditations, BI is a “Triple Crown” business school - an honor shared with only 70 business schools worldwide.

Facts about BI

• Campus Oslo has 11,000 students • There are 21,000 students in total across our four campuses • More than 20 degree programmes from Bachelor to the PhD level • 55 individual scholarships awarded in 2016 • More than 100 nationalities represented across BI • Hosts Norway’s largest and one of Europe’s most productive academic environments in the area of business economics, management and marketing • BI’s research profile rests on both disciplinary research and research work done in co-operation with industrial sectors and public administration

More about BI at


Norway As one of the world’s richest countries per capita, with a population of 5,225 million, Norway’s thriving economy offers a world of possibilities. With an unemployment rate at approximately four percent, Norway provides many job opportunities and one of the highest standards of living for its citizens.

More about Norway at More about Oslo at

While Norway has emerged as a leading producer of oil and gas, the country also benefits from other natural resources delivering flourishing industries in the areas of shipping, fishing, maritime, hydropower, and shipbuilding.

Oslo BI is located in the historic and fast-growing city of Oslo, the capital of Norway. Its proximity to downtown positions BI at the heart of the business community. Did you know...?

• The Nobel Peace Prize is awarded annually in Oslo’s City Hall • Oslo is one of the fastest growing cities in Europe • Oslo has been ranked as one of the world’s most sustainable cities • In two hours or less, you can reach major European cities like Paris, London, Copenhagen, Berlin, Stockholm, and Amsterdam

Foto: Nicolas Tourrenc




The only Norwegian business school with triple international accreditation

Phd Doctoral Programme at BI Norwegian Business School 2017/18  
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