UTS to offer Digital Doctorate in Business Administration
UTS Business School has launched the Certificate of Research in Business Administration – the first stage of the Digital Doctorate in Business Administration (DDBA) – in 2019.
This new international program is run in partnership with Business Science Institute in Luxembourg, and SKEMA Business School and IAE Lyon in France, with additional campuses in the US and Asia. It is a research-based management program that is a step up from the MBA, and comprises a mix of coursework and research.
We sat down with Program Director, Professor Emmanuel Josserand, to explore the surge in demand for DBAs worldwide, what makes an ideal DBA candidate, and why the UTS Business School DDBA program is unique.
What has caused the surge in demand for DBAs worldwide?
There is a growing pool of professionals who have developed operational mastery in their field and have significant business experience who want to step back and configure this knowledge at a higher level.
What sort of person makes an ideal candidate?
Candidates generally have extensive – from five to 30-plus years – professional work experience. They typically want to translate that experience into their DBA work, or investigate a topic that is significant to them. They might already have an MBA or similar business or specialist qualifications, and while it is a plus to have prior research experience, it is not compulsory.
Masters or MBA qualifications are oriented towards operational knowledge, whereas the DBA offers the opportunity to reflect, and achieve change for an organisation, industry or broader society, by producing new knowledge.
What is the difference between a PhD and a Doctorate in Business Administration?
The DBA is similar to a PhD in that it calls on the same rigour of research methodology that we expect from a PhD. However, a PhD is focused on the theoretical contribution, while the practical application is only a small element.
The DBA asks for a moderate theoretical contribution, which could be applying a new model or theory to a new field, industry or organisation, but there is a greater emphasis on practical insights that a company, industry or sector can use to implement change.
Another aspect is that PhDs are traditionally not designed for people who are working full-time. Usually PhD candidates come to campus during the day to complete their subjects, so they often attract younger people who want to enter academia.
What time commitment do people make to complete the DDBA?
The DDBA is designed to be a manageable workload, similar to undertaking an MBA while working. It is completed over three years, which equates to around one day per week, plus some additional evenings.
One of the advantages of online modules is that it offers greater flexibility, and while the dissertation stage requires students to block in some weeks for intensive writing, they do this at a time that suits them.
What do you see as an advantage of the DDBA over similar programs?
This program is part of an international partnership, so whatever your research topic, you can find the right supervisor. Students have access to global faculty and international peer networks through partner organisations in Europe, Asia and the US. Similar programs offered at other Australian universities lack this global connection.
The DDBA provides the best of blended learning, so students complete modules online, which cover all they need to conduct rigorous research. They still have one-on-one sessions with the professor in charge of each module and also with their supervisor to reflect on what they have learnt in the module and how it applies to their research proposal.
What is “International Week” within the DDBA?
There is an international week in September where DDBA participants from all over the world come to Luxembourg for a one-week seminar. They are experienced managers and executives from a wide range of industries, so it is an incredible experience.
Seminar participants have the opportunity to present their topic, and attend the final dissertation defences, to gain feedback and exchange ideas with peers and global faculty. They can also book one-on-one meetings with academics to test out their ideas.
What excites you the most about this program?
The DDBA is a fantastic opportunity for collaboration between the academic world and the global world of practice. It brings managers and executives together in a research journey that creates real world impact.
It is exciting to see candidates changing their practice, writing books, and publishing work that will be used by their organisation or industry to reconsider the way things are done. It is also gratifying to see people change their perspective and become more reflective in their day-to-day business life, which contributes to a more reflective society.
Sign up for a webinar to find out more.