Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA)

41 North Business School

Program Description

Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA)

41 North Business School

Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA)


This program is one of nine DBA programs in the world to be accredited by AMBA.

The Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA) aims for graduates to discern the emergent orientations to be applied within a company: This doctorate will assist you in acquiring and mastering the methodology of research to apply to your job.

The Doctorate of Business Administration offered by Grenoble Ecole de Management is a research-based doctoral degree that offers participants the opportunity to obtain the highest level, unique, and issue-driven qualifications in business.

This doctoral business degree is particularly focused on the management of technology, organizational change, and innovation. However, the program may also cover more traditional research topics in fields such as management, finance, marketing, and organizational behavior.

Why enroll in an Executive Doctorate (DBA) program?

There are three critical components that weigh heavily on an applicant’s decision to enroll in a DBA program. These are (A) CAREER EFFECT after graduation; (B) EXPERIENCES during the program and (C) the business school’s CULTURE.


The primary reason for executives, consultants, and senior staff to enroll in a DBA program is their decision to significantly alter their work and lifestyle. The typical applicant has an MBA or a comparable degree in management, a successful career developed over the years, belongs to several professional associations and reads several business periodicals to stay abreast of new developments. But, s/he now feels that there is something missing, “Is this all there is to life? I need a new intellectual challenge to keep going and I need more time to myself”. “I have been a good coach, but now I would like to freely transfer my business expertise and knowledge to outsiders”.

Leading graduate schools of business and the AACSB International have been reporting a growing shortage of doctorally-qualified teachers with applied business management experience. Why? Over the years, motivating 25-30-year-olds to enroll in traditional business Ph.D. programs has become extremely difficult, so much so that now the few and fresh Ph.D.’s in accounting, finance, and marketing can expect to receive more than one offer from outstanding universities even before they complete their doctoral studies. How did business academia come to this? One major reason is that most of the good university graduates prefer to go for the MBA and earn substantially higher incomes than their Ph.D. counterparts. How do we close this gap in supply and demand for experienced business professors? The DBA is one answer. After a successful career in business, some of the MBAs who graduated years ago are now ready and motivated to study for the DBA on a part-time basis. During the DBA program, we teach them how to conduct academic research, how to write a thesis so that they become academically qualified (AQ) because this status is the indispensable requirement to teaching in leading business schools. When they teach, they learn to disseminate not only knowledge but their own time-tested and applied business experience. This gives them the immense satisfaction!

But teaching is definitely not the sole purpose of DBA candidates. Many come from fields of consulting and technical staff positions, so the DBA provides them with a rare distinguishing characteristic, in other words, gives them the comparative advantage in a field filled with many competitors.


However, transforming business managers, consultants or technical staff into AQ professors of business is easier said than done! The supervisors must be equally prepared to meet the challenge. This requires special skills. In a traditional Ph.D. program, the student (the disciple) learns from the professors (disseminators of knowledge) at their pace and spread over several academic years. In the DBA, the professors are supervisors but must lead their students actively, often on a one-to-one basis. In return, the student must devote a good 30 hours per month to learning how to conduct sound academic research and writing an outstanding thesis.

The strength of commitment, diversity of business backgrounds and global diversity are strong characteristics of DBA cohorts. The members learn not only from their supervisors but also from each other. Positivity, coherence and interpersonal support become critically important success factors. After graduation, they join the ever-growing DBA alumni knowing that they are now members of the global business academia.


Business schools that offer DBA programs survive and thrive on the diversity and the richness of their culture. They are not geographically constrained, they admit participants with diverse backgrounds, at least 30% of their intake is female, and their faculty matches the diversity characteristics of their students. DBA programs are societal business laboratories where no single organization or philosophy or culture dominates.


The Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA) program is divided into two stages:

Stage I – Training in Doctoral Research in Management Sciences:

Philosophy, Methods, and Tools (18 to 24 months)

DBA students start by learning methods and techniques for research design, data collection, and data analysis in order to conduct, analyze, author, and publish research that meets doctoral standards. Students complete a series of four to six research training workshops that are held in Grenoble and partner countries.

Between workshops, students prepare a detailed research thesis proposal, complete a pilot study, and perform individual research and research fieldwork under the direction of doctoral supervisors. In order to proceed to Stage II, students are required to produce three pieces of written work. These include:

  • An extended research proposal (1,500 to 4,000 words);
  • A comprehensive publishable literature review (5,000 to 20,000 words); and
  • A preliminary thesis (15,000 to 30,000 words).

Successful completion of Stage I leads to the awarding of the Certificate in Research in Management Sciences.

Stage II. Thesis (24 to 30 months of part-time study)

The DBA research and thesis portion of the program consists primarily of individual research under the supervision of a qualified professor who has an international reputation in technology management, business innovation, and organizational change management and provides a broad range of subject-area expertise.

The DBA thesis should exhibit substantial evidence of original scholarship that meets publishing standards and provides useful managerial recommendations.

DBA candidates are required to show their ability to conduct original investigations; test, apply and examine their own and others’ ideas; and understand the relationship between their themes and wider fields of knowledge.

Candidates may be required to identify current issues and apply relevant theories for problem-solving.


Each DBA candidate is assigned to and supervised by a research-active professor from Grenoble Ecole de Management or a partner institution.



The Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA) program enables students to:

  • Understand state-of-the-art research in their fields of study;
  • Acquire the necessary understanding and expertise in methods and techniques for research design, data collection, and data analysis;
  • Conduct, write, and disseminate high -quality-doctoral-level research;
  • Achieve a greater level of effectiveness as a professional practitioner in managing technology, innovation, and change; and
  • Gain legitimacy as researchers and faculty members in both academic and non-academic environments


Companies that choose to sponsor Grenoble Ecole de Management DBA candidates benefit directly from their research and studies. Each candidate conducts doctoral research on current business and management issues that are often based on their companies' current and anticipated needs. Additionally, companies can keep valuable managers on board while they pursue their doctoral degrees in this part-time program.


DBA program candidates are recruited from all over the world. They come from a wide variety of backgrounds—the sciences, humanities, and technical and engineering fields. Generally, they are high-level professionals, such as managers or executives with advanced degrees in business disciplines.

Admission and application procedures differ depending on which program you wish to attend.

DBA Impact

Since 1993, our DBA research program has been actively connecting businesses and academic communities in order to enact change and promote progress through original and rigorous research.

Our DBA students’ research influences managerial and organizational milieus at the highest level. Each student’s thesis includes a chapter dedicated to the managerial implications of their doctoral research and offers relevant recommendations for organizations to overcome key challenges.

DBA students and graduates are encouraged to share their results and findings with the widest possible audience in order to inform and engage with their peers, organizations, and communities.

With a strong focus on dissemination to business and academic audiences, the combination of relevance and rigor in our DBA research supports our reputation in the management of technology, innovation, and entrepreneurship.

This school offers programs in:
  • English

Last updated October 11, 2018
Duration & Price
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Start date
June 2019
4 years
Full time
60,000 EUR
Turkey - Istanbul, Istanbul
Start date : June 2019
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info
June 2019
Turkey - Istanbul, Istanbul
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info

"Why enroll in an Executive Doctorate (DBA) program?”