Business and Management

MPhil or PhD

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Key facts

Start dates

January 2024 / June 2024

Application deadline

Applications for international candidates must be received in full by:

  • 31 May 2024 (for September 2024 entry)
  • 30 September 2024 (for January 2025 entry)
  • 31 January 2025 (for June 2025 entry)

Applications for home and distance learning candidates must be received in full by:

  • 30 June 2024 (for September 2024 entry) - only entry for Doctor of Coaching & Mentoring
  • 31 September 2024 (for January 2025 entry)
  • 28 February 2025 (for June 2025 entry)

Course length

Full time: minimum 3-4 years

Part time: minimum 4-6 years

Funding status



Business and Management is a broad disciplinary cluster which includes sub-disciplines such as Organisational Behaviour, Leadership, Entrepreneurship and Innovation, and International Business, amongst others. Accordingly, our doctoral students have the opportunity to explore a wide range of innovative research topics of diverse thematic, spatial, and temporal contexts.

As a doctoral student in Business and Management you will be supported to pursue and publish original research, combining your empirical enquiry with a theoretical contribution to knowledge. You will also be invited to participate in a broad range of training workshops and speaker events organised by the School, joining a vibrant research community of students of diverse cultural and professional backgrounds.

Research expertise

Oxford Brookes Business School boasts a diverse team of expert supervisors in variety of areas including Organisational Behaviour, Human Resource Management, Leadership, Entrepreneurship, Innovation, Strategy, Diversity and Equality, Coaching and Mentoring, Business and Organisational History, amongst others. Regardless of the disciplinary focus, our supervisors strive to promote responsible business and managerial practices that have a positive societal impact.

If you study for a PhD in Business and Management you will normally be linked to one of the four research centres depending on your chosen topic within Business and Management: the Centre of Business Society and Global Challenges (BSGC); the Oxford Regions Innovation, Enterprise Lab (ORIEL); the International Centre for Coaching and Mentoring Studies; or the Centre for Diversity Policy Research and Practice.

Degree routes

All students enrol as probationer research students. The degree for which you register will depend on your academic qualifications and research experience. During the first year, you will formally register your research proposal for one of the below routes.

Why Oxford Brookes University?

You will benefit from:

  • a supervisory team of two to three researchers who can provide the best combination of expertise to support your work
  • training courses in research methods provided by the Business School and wider University
  • regular seminars and learning activities at department, school and university level
  • experience of presenting work to different audiences
  • opportunities to network and discuss your work with staff and fellow students.
  • engage with our entrepreneurs in residence and visiting entrepreneurs
  • work with local, regional and multinational businesses (where appropriate)
  • collaborative opportunities, including receiving industrial funding and sponsorship.

You will be supported in developing and sharing your expertise through:

  • opportunities to present at internal seminars and conferences
  • dupport in attending, and ultimately presenting at external conferences (some financial assistance is available)
  • training as an Associate Lecturer and the opportunity to engage in teaching activity on appropriate modules offered by the Business School.

Learning and assessment

While every candidate’s experience will vary according to their particular discipline, topic and methodology, there are several elements that all will undertake:

  • investigating and evaluating an approved topic
  • undertaking a critical review of the existing literature in your topic area to set the theoretical context for your work and help demonstrate a gap in the existing body of work
  • developing and implementing a rigorous and appropriate methodology for researching your topic
  • demonstrating that your research conforms to all relevant ethical codes of practice
  • extensive primary field research, analysis and evaluation.

You are supported in your studies through a series of workshops, available on-campus. These workshops include:

  • Newcomer and progression registration workshops
  • University Research Ethics approach workshop
  • Beginning and developing your evaluation of the literature
  • Qualitative/Quantitative research approaches workshops A and B
  • Completing your first draft and viva preparation sessions
Student looking at a laptop


Assessment methods used on this course

Your progression on the full-time doctoral award will be monitored through an annual process undertaken at the end of each academic year, and through two key progression points after approximately six months and eighteen months of study respectively. Equivalent progression points are identified for part-time candidates.

Formative assessment is ongoing through engagement with deadlines set with your supervisory team, and feedback from OBBS research panels.

Summative assessment takes place through the submission of a 80,000-100,000 word thesis and oral examination (viva voce) with internal and external examiners appointed by the University.


Abigal Muchecheti

Leadership aspirations of black and ethnic minority women in non-academic roles across UK Higher Education Institutions (HEIs)

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Anthony Ebow Spio

An exploration of women entrepreneurs’ competency development process in pursuit of entrepreneurial opportunities in the manufacturing sector in Ghana

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Mitaali Katoch

Survival learnings of family-run fashion firms: Expanding the significance of organisational adaptation and environmental selection in organisation studies

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Hannah Isabelle Tornow

Which contextual and individual factors shape gender inclusive innovation in the knowledge economy of Oxfordshire?

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Cornelia Bogatu

Exploring identity development of independent professional coaches - a narrative study

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Nic Rattle

Purposeful Businesses, Impact and Innovation

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After you graduate

Career prospects

Our PhD alumni go on to work in a variety of different settings including academic, government and related agencies, multinationals and small and medium-sized enterprises.

A doctoral award allows you to demonstrate you have the highest level of critical analysis and thinking skills which can be applied to a range of organisational settings. Where and how you apply these advanced research and knowledge insights will depend upon your research topic and aspirations for making a difference to organisations and communities.

Many of our alumni have published from their doctoral studies, in practitioner as well as peer reviewed journals. In addition, many doctoral alumni contribute book chapters or complete books based on their research.

How to apply

Entry requirements

Applicants should have a good honours degree and a good master's degree at merit level or above that includes a thesis component.

Applicants with equivalent experience will be considered.

Application process

  1. Complete your research proposal
  2. Compile a personal/motivation statement and identify the Oxford Brookes Business School (OBBS) research centre and any relevant members of OBBS staff who may be interested in your proposal
  3. Gather your supporting documents (listed below)
  4. Make a direct application.

If you have any difficulty completing your application, please visit our Frequently Asked Questions page.

Supporting documents

When applying for this programme of study please upload all of the required supporting documents listed below to the online application portal.

We suggest merging your supporting documents into a single PDF file. Please note there are two specifically designated options for you to upload your two references to.

  • copies of your previous degree transcripts and certificates (both undergraduate and postgraduate)
  • a scan of your passport
  • two academic references
  • a 2,000-word Research Topic Proposal
  • evidence of funding (we require evidence of personal funds or letter from funder if being sponsored)
  • international students must also provide an English Language Certificate with an IELTS score of at least 7.0.

*If applying for the (FT or PT) Distance learning option please comment in your motivation statement and research proposal upon your ability to access resources (IT, library) which will ensure you can attend relevant online and intensive sessions, and how you intend to manage your time commitment to doctoral studies. Applications deadline is Friday 19th May 2023 for September entry. We cannot guarantee that applications submitted after this date can be considered for Autumn 2023 entry.

Tuition fees

Home (UK) full time

Home (UK) part time

International full time

International part time

International distance learning full time

Home (UK) full time

Home (UK) part time

Tuition fees

2023 / 24
Home (UK) full time

Home (UK) part time

International full time

International part time

International distance learning full time

2024 / 25
Home (UK) full time

Home (UK) part time

Fees quoted are for the first year only. If you are studying a course that lasts longer than one year, your fees will increase each year.

For International fees the following factors will be taken into account by the University when it is setting the annual fees: inflationary measures such as the retail price indices, projected increases in University costs, changes in the level of funding received from Government sources, admissions statistics and access considerations including the availability of student support. 

Home fees are set by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and are released approximately five months before the start of each academic year.

If you have any questions about fees, get in touch with the Research Degrees Team at

How and when to pay

Tuition fee instalments for the semester are due by the Monday of week 1 of each semester. Students are not liable for full fees for that semester if they leave before week 4. If the leaving date is after week 4, full fees for the semester are payable.

  • For information on payment methods please see our Make a Payment page.
  • For information about refunds please visit our Refund policy page