A. Gary Anderson
Graduate School of Management

UCR Ph.D. Program

Ph.D. in Strategic Management and Organization

Ph.D. Strategic Management and Organization (SMO) concentration

The Ph.D. program in Strategic Management and Organization prepares students for an academic career conducting research and teaching in organizational behavior and strategy. As a doctoral student, you will be working with faculty who are outstanding researchers, have work published in the field's top journals, and who have extensive experience successfully advising doctoral students.

Our faculty in management conduct research on a wide variety of management topics at the macro, meso and micro levels, including organizational behavior, judgment and decision-making, human resource management, behavioral strategy, corporate strategy and organization theory. We conduct our research using diverse methodologies: statistical and econometric analyses of large-sample datasets; machine learning models on big data; laboratory experiments and surveys; and agent-based modeling.

Application Information

The UCR School of Business is not accepting Ph.D. applications for Fall 2024. The next application cycle will be for Fall 2025 (applications will be open in September 2024).

Program Outline

The following is a brief overview of the Ph.D. program in Business Administration and its requirements. More details can be found in the Ph.D. handbook.

The average time for completion of the program is four-to-five years. A student’s duration in the program will be devoted to research, core curriculum coursework and teaching assistantships, if applicable. 

The program generally follows a three-phase sequence:

1. Beginning research with supervision, core curriculum coursework and a teaching assistantship, if applicable.

2. Continuing research, qualifying examination and advancement to candidacy.

3. Final dissertation research, including data collection, write-up and defense of the dissertation.

  • Research

    Research is an integral part of the entire Ph.D. in Business Administration with a concentration in Strategic Management and Organization program. All students are required to begin their research by writing a first-year research paper and are expected to be engaged in research throughout the program, culminating in the dissertation research. A distinguishing factor of our Ph.D. program is that students collaborate on research with faculty from the very start.

  • Coursework

    In their first two years in the program, students are required to:

    • Complete five research methods courses.
    • Complete four field seminars in management.
    • Attend weekly research seminars (field colloquia), where students interact with external professors in the field of management that are invited to the area's seminar series.
    • Take a comprehensive exam during the spring quarter of their second year in the program.
    • Complete three basic discipline courses from outside the business school.
    • Complete four elective courses from a list of approved electives.  

    Details regarding these requirements are outlined in the Ph.D. handbook. 

  • Dissertation Research

    The dissertation culminates the student’s academic endeavors. When all program requirements are completed, students take their oral qualifying exam, which is a defense of the dissertation proposal.

    Of substantial magnitude, the dissertation should make a significant contribution to the advancement of knowledge in management. It should be of sufficient originality and quality to merit publication, either in whole or in part, in top-tier professional journals. A candidate for the Ph.D. degree will defend his/her dissertation in a public, oral presentation at a time announced to members of the UCR community. Upon the candidate’s successful defense of the dissertation, the Ph.D. Dissertation Committee will make a recommendation to the Graduate Division that the Ph.D. degree be conferred.

  • Teaching Experience

    Ph.D. students are requested to serve as Teacher Assistants for 1-2 quarters each year, starting in their second year. In this role, they work with faculty members in the undergraduate classes by reading and grading assignments, preparing examinations and conducting laboratory sessions. Students are usually not assigned TA duties during first year studies. Students supported by fellowships are not assigned TA duties until they terminate their fellowship.

  • Management Field Seminars

    Ph.D candidates in SMO will take the following field seminars in the first two years of their degree program, taught by our tenure-track faculty in the management area.

    Management Field Seminars

    • MGT 289A Micro Organizational Theory
    • MGT 289B Macro Organizational Theory
    • MGT 289C Strategic Management
    • MGT 289D Designing Organizational Theory