Graduates with their Ph.D. in Management are primed for a career in the organizational and management research field. But with the majority of studies being held in a university setting, competition for placement can be fierce as graduates clamor for open university teaching positions. Even so, Salary.com does project a career growth for business professors of 18 percent between 2016 and 2026.
Doctorates can go on to become business executives, policy analysts, or consultants as well. The majority of the schools on this list, however, focus on developing strong researchers for an academic environment.
Ph.D. in Management
Doctorate research in management is a multidisciplinary field that requires expertise is psychology, sociology, economics, finance, and marketing, nevermind any field specialties like manufacturing or health care. So students should not only be well-rounded and well-studied in their skillsets, but they should be naturally curious, too.
Typically, schools suggest that applicants have a solid undergraduate study in linear algebra and calculus, and coursework usually consists of research and data analysis methodology in addition to in-depth business concepts. Some programs offer more in-depth teaching pedagogy, as well as teaching assistantships, to help support students develop classroom leadership skills. So whether you're into teaching or business management research, here's the list of the Best PhDs in Management.
Top Management Degrees uses seven data points to rank college programs. Here they are in order of importance:
- A Reputation Aggregate Score from other rankings
- Graduate Average Salary
- Alumni Reviews
- Percentage of Admitted Students Who Graduate
- Admitted Students' Test Scores
- Acceptance Rate
#25 Yale University – New Haven, Connecticut
Instead of offering the traditional two-track approach of most management schools, Yale University takes a more holistic approach to its Organizations and Management Ph.D. program. Students absorb both psychological and sociological perspectives of organization and management studies. The school also dives deep into empirical research methodology in the coursework, giving students a well-rounded curriculum that develops them into the scholars of tomorrow.
TMD Ranking Score: 78.12
#24 Massachusetts Institute of Technology – Cambridge, Massachusetts
The Massachusetts Institute of Technology has a stellar reputation, and it's Sloan School of Business is no exception. The historic school boasts four decades of business research and thought leadership, so it makes an excellent choice for the particularly wonky. Faculty and Sloan graduate students also take part in running the MIT Entrepreneurship Center–affectionately called the E-Center–which hosts all sorts of internationally renowned events, seminars, and research opportunities for the knowledge-hungry students.
TMD Ranking Score: 78.79
#23 University of Connecticut – Storrs, Connecticut
Similar to other schools on our list, the University of Connecticut divides up its Ph.D. program in Management into two main focus areas: organizational behavior or research management. In addition to the standard, this program also offers a unique minor in entrepreneurship studies that highlights newer firms and sustainable growth models. The program also stresses a lot of interaction with faculty, increasing student opportunity in research and thought leadership.
TMD Ranking Score: 79.04
#22 University of Central Florida – Orlando, Florida
Students in the University of Central Florida's Business Administration-Management Ph.D. program are required to hold full-time student status. Luckily, there are lots of opportunities to get involved in research within in the department. The program aims to develop students to be academics, teachers, and researchers in the management field.
TMD Ranking Score: 79.36
#21 University of Washington – Seattle, Washington
The University of Washington Foster School of Business offers a doctoral program in Management. Students have two major concentrations to choose from–strategic management or organizational behavior and human resource management, but students are welcome to include a minor to develop other areas of interest further. This program also prepares students to publish research in academic journals with coursework on research and statistical methodology.
TMD Ranking Score: 79.80
#20 Boston University – Boston, Massachusetts
Boston University has a residency requirement of its Ph.D. students; 32 credit hours must be completed on the Boston campus. In addition to credit hours, students are required to do teaching intensives to hone their teaching skills. Graduates will be able to not only research their areas of interest, but they will be capable of teaching both undergraduate and graduate coursework.
TMD Ranking Score: 81.62
#19 University of Chicago – Chicago, Illinois
The University of Chicago Booth School of Business's Ph.D. in Management and Organizational Studies program has a heavy focus on applied mathematics and computer methodology to solve management challenges. But in addition to mathematical programming and inventory theory, current students do focus quite a bit on accounting, behavioral science, and economics.
TMD Ranking Score: 82.33
#18 University of Pennsylvania – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
The University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of Business is considered an ivy school and perhaps has some of the strongest standalone name recognition on our list. Due to its history, the school has both impressive placement and alumni list as well. In addition to its impressive pedigree, Wharton offers many multidisciplinary focuses, including international business and human resource management.
TMD Ranking Score: 82.38
#17 University of Miami – Coral Gables, Florida
This Ph.D. in Business – Management Science concentration is primarily a research-heavy program. Collaborative research with faculty begins in year one, with coursework designed to mold students into researchers by graduation. Areas of specialty vary, but faculty boast expertise in the Monte Carlo theory and methodology, social media analytics, and spatial-temporal processes among more traditional topics. Applicants are highly encouraged to have undergraduate coursework in maths like linear algebra, calculus, and statistics as well.
TMD Ranking Score: 82.61
#16 Northwestern University – Evanston, Illinois
Northwestern University Ph.D. students come from a range of backgrounds–some fresh of their MBA or undergraduate degrees in related fields of study while others have spent years in the field in executive positions. Regardless of the starting point, all graduates of the program possess strong research skills to then go forth and apply in academic teaching positions at institutions like HEC Paris, London Business School, and Columbia University.
TMD Ranking Score: 82.87
#15 New York University – New York, New York
New York University offers a Ph.D. in Management via their Wagner School of Management. The program is divided into macro and micro fields of study, with sub-fields devoted to public administration, nonprofit sector work, and health management. NYU keeps it's cohorts small–5 to 8 students a year–and ensures that graduates matriculate with teaching skill sets as well as academic research skills in their fields of study.
TMD Ranking Score: 84.24
#14 Carnegie Mellon University – Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Carnegie Mellon's Tepper School of Business offers a Ph.D. in Operations Management for those students looking to continue in academic management research and teaching. Graduates are prepared to tackle operational challenges from a scientific perspective, as the program heavily stresses stochastic processes, quantitative modeling, and empirical study.
TMD Ranking Score: 85.60
#13 University of Southern California – Los Angeles, California
Management and Organization research at the University of Southern California takes a multidisciplinary approach. Students take coursework in psychology, sociology, and economics to further develop their expertise in their chosen topics. Students then delve deep into organization theory, structure, and strategic management. While the focus is a bit tighter than other Ph.D. programs, students are encouraged to take electives as well as collaborate with faculty, other students and research staff to further their understanding.n
TMD Ranking Score: 86.52
#12 University of Minnesota – Minneapolis, Minnesota
The University of Minnesota offers a Ph.D. in Strategic Management and Entrepreneurship via their Carlson School of Management. The school has a highly recognized research Each student's program is individualized based on their interests, and they are actively encouraged to support faculty research. This prepares students perfectly for a continued career in academic management research, and students have boasted placements at California State, Long Beach among others.
TMD Ranking Score: 87.08
#11 Cornell University – Ithaca, New York
Cornell University offers a Ph.D. in Management via their graduate school and promises to train students to research, to teach, and uphold the ethics of service orientation. Each promise has specific goals and measurements depending on the student's chosen area of focus. And students should also be prepared for regular professional luncheons, seminars, and other more participatory learning opportunities.
TMD Ranking Score: 88.78
#10 University of Michigan – Ann Arbor, Michigan
The University of Michigan's Ross School of Business is keenly focused on preparing their students to be the academic leaders of tomorrow. In addition to teaching research skills and data analysis, Ross students hone their teacher skill sets to prepare them for leading classrooms as well. The school also fosters a community feel, with brown bag lunches and other programs designed to gather together students and faculty outside of classroom environments.
TMD Ranking Score: 90.30
#9 University of California, Irvine – Irvine, California
The University of California, Irvine's Paul Merage School of Business cares about digital research. And no wonder with this campuses proximity to some of the countries largest tech giants. The program is divided into two phases. First, qualification is when students take research and theological coursework to develop their expertise. Once students complete their coursework, a written preliminary exam, and a formal oral exam, they are allowed to proceed to their dissertation.
TMD Ranking Score: 91.11
#8 University of Maryland – College Park, Maryland
Every Ph.D. candidate at the University of Maryland is paired with their faculty advisor who helps them craft a custom degree program. While Ph.D. students are required to attend on campus, the university does have digital learning resources available. Even so, with the school located just miles outside of DC, this is a smart choice for those looking to delve into government research in particular. The program has a required 36 credit hours, as well as craft and defends a dissertation to faculty.
TMD Ranking Score: 92.45
#7 Georgia Institute of Technology – Atlanta, Georgia
Georgia Institute of Technology offers a Ph.D. in Management with significant stress on developing necessary research skills. GIT makes it a priority to prepare students for their careers in management research and academia. In addition to the live classroom environments, students will also be expected to prepare and present a dissertation as well as comprehensive exams in their areas of study. Ph.D. candidates are also likely to live and study in the Atlanta-city area full time until their degree is complete.
TMD Ranking Score: 92.58
#6 Stanford University – Stanford, California
Tucked under the engineering department, Stanford University's Ph.D. in Management Science and Engineering has a sharp focus on pragmatic solutions to challenges in business today. This extra academic edge can prepare students for both careers in academic research, as well as highly technical research roles in industry or government. While the program can be completed in as little as three years, most students take five years on average to complete the program.
TMD Ranking Score: 93.72
#5 Columbia Business School – New York, New York
Similar to other schools on our list, Columbia has both a macro and micro track to its program. Columbia's microprogram has a particular focus on social and cognitive psychology on topics such as communication, negotiation, and bargaining, and stereotyping. The microprogram has a distinct emphasis on organizational theory, analyzing both public and private organizations as well as global examples to develop students' expertise further.
TMD Ranking Score: 95.03
#4 University of California, Los Angeles – City, California
UCLA's doctoral program in management prepares its students to follow their research areas of interest and helps its students prepare publications in the academic management space. Better yet, the schools better than 1:1 student to faculty ratios mean that students are well-supported by a diverse and experienced academics in the area. Graduates have gone on to teach management and business coursework at some of the world's most prestigious universities, including the New York University's economics department at New York University and information and operations school at HEC Paris.
TMD Ranking Score: 95.82
#3 University of California, Berkeley – Berkeley, California
Students at Management of Organizations (MORS) school must choose between a macro and micro track when working on their Ph.D. in Management. The macro track is geared more toward students interested in experimental design and theoretical development, and students will have opportunities to study under the Psychology department. In contrast, the micro track is best for students with a tighter focus on statistical methodology and data analysis, and students often coordinate with the Sociology department.
TMD Ranking Score: 96.47
#2 Harvard University – Boston, Massachusetts
Harvard University has a stellar reputation, so it's placement so high on our list isn't too much of a surprise. With a focus on health care, the Ph.D. in Management helps students dive deep into organizational structure and performance in health care delivery. Recent research topics have included process improvement in clinical drug trials, team performance in neonatal units, and safety and organization structures among others.
TMD Ranking Score: 98.12
#1 Duke University – Durham, North Carolina
Duke University's Ph.D. in Management and Organizations prepares students for teaching and research positions in some of the best institutions in the country–recent placements include Cornell and Carnegie Mellon among others. And each student studies decision-making organization behavior, and organizational theory, in addition to statistical and research methodology. In addition to defending a thesis, students will actively participate in the Management and Organizations department by presenting a faculty presentation beginning in Year 2 as well as working as a teaching assistant.
TMD Ranking Score: 100