The Wisconsin Ph.D. Program in management and human resources develops scholars in the domain of management. The department’s core areas of research include organizational behavior, human resources, organization theory, entrepreneurship, and strategy. The program prepares individuals for careers in research and teaching at leading research universities. Our students achieve placements as assistant professors at top research universities.

Students in our Ph.D. program work closely with faculty members to contribute to significant advancements in the theory and practice of management, as evidenced by our recently published journal articles. Our faculty members are renowned scholars, leaders at the Academy of Management and the Strategic Management Society, and editors in top scholarly journals.

Academic Requirements

The admissions process is highly competitive. Ideal candidates possess a strong academic background at the undergraduate or graduate level. A degree in business is not a prerequisite for doctoral-level study, although such a background may be helpful (students enter the Ph.D. program with a variety of educational backgrounds).

Program Coursework

  • The management and human resources department offers a slate of foundational Ph.D. seminars across the group’s core areas of research, including human resource management (HR), organizational behavior (OB), organizational theory (OT), entrepreneurship (ENT), and strategy. The seminar offerings vary from year to year. Doctoral students are expected to take all Ph.D. seminars offered by the department.
  • Required coursework in advanced research methods and statistics includes a minimum of 18 credits, consisting of two courses in statistics, two in research methodology, and two depth courses. Courses are selected in consultation with the student’s advisor.
  • Students may declare a secondary academic discipline as a minor (e.g., sociology, economics, psychology).
  • Preliminary exams are written at the end of the second year. The exam, which takes place over two days, consists of four questions. Two questions cover the student’s primary concentration, one question covers the student’s secondary concentration, and there is one methods question. (The concentrations are human resource management, organizational behavior, or strategy/ENT/OT.)
  • The subsequent two years of study are allocated to developing and defending a dissertation.

General Ph.D. Requirements

In addition to meeting the requirements of the specific academic department, all students must meet the general Ph.D. requirements of both the UW–Madison Graduate School and the Wisconsin School of Business.

Faculty Research Interests

Research interests:
  • Leadership
  • Organizational culture
  • Group decision processes
  • Job design
  • Decision-making (including computer-aided decision making)
  • Stress and coping
  • Self-management
Research interests:
  • Competitive advantage
  • Human capital
  • Strategic management
  • Innovation and creativity
Research interests:
  • Venture finance
  • Business accelerators
  • Technology entrepreneurship including mobile software
  • Academic entrepreneurship
  • Determinants of entrepreneurship
Research interests:
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Employee mobility
  • Innovation and technology
  • Business strategy
  • Complexity theory
Research interests:
  • Compensation
  • Human resource management
  • Incentives
  • Staffing
Research interests:
  • Business strategy
  • Organizational learning
  • Innovation
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Computational modeling
Research interests:
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Innovation
  • Entrepreneurial finance
  • Household finance
  • Economic development
  • Labor markets
Research interests:
  • Work motivation
  • Performance in multi-task environments
  • Creativity
  • Decision-making under uncertainty
Research interests:
  • Leadership and organizational behavior
  • Reinforcement theory
  • Social cognitive theory and self-efficacy
  • Interaction between primed subconscious goals and conscious goals
  • Core confidence
Research interests:
  • Business sustainability
  • Corporate social responsibility
  • Organizational learning
  • Behavioral theory of the firm
Research interests:
  • Compensation
  • Human resource management
  • Consequences of employee turnover
Research interests:
  • Diversity
  • Discrimination
  • Organizational justice
  • Human resource management

Connect with Current Students

We encourage you to contact our doctoral students in management and human resources to hear their perspectives on the Wisconsin Ph.D. Program.

View current student profiles

See Our Placement Results

Graduates of our Ph.D. specialization in management and human resources have accepted tenure-track positions at top research universities.

View recent placements