The Promise of Business Doctoral Education

Setting the Pace for Innovation, Sustainability, Relevance, and Quality

Business doctoral education has directly contributed to advancing the intellectual foundations of business and management, sustaining vibrant academic communities, and elevating the scholarly reputation of business schools within universities.

Yet the lens through which we evaluate the needs served by doctoral education is broadening, and imminent issues in global doctoral education still must be addressed. Doctoral education design and delivery models must continue to evolve in a way that best supports different needs, experiences, and goals around the globe. Schools must look globally to identify effective practices, seek partners, and understand the forces impacting their recruitment, positioning, and placement strategies—all while providing an unrelenting attention to quality.

In early 2012, the AACSB International Doctoral Education Task Force, chaired by Robert T. Sumichrast, dean of the Pamplin College of Business at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, set forth to study the current state of, challenges, and opportunities facing business doctoral education worldwide. The resulting report sheds light on a business doctoral education landscape characterized by great diversity, as well as numerous opportunities for innovation driven by needs related to purpose, capacity, access, and quality.

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