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ESCP launches a new flagship<br />
programme : the Global Executive Ph.D

ESCP launches a new flagship
programme : the Global Executive Ph.D

An interview with Margot Drancourt de Lasteyrie, Director of the Global Executive Ph.D at ESCP Business School about the upcoming launch of Global Executive Ph.D.

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Why has ESCP Business School launched a Global Executive Ph.D.?

ESCP Business School has long desired to offer an Executive Ph.D. designed for senior executives motivated by academic research and teaching.

ESCP is one of only three business schools in France to have a doctoral school and to be able to deliver state-recognized (Ph.D.) diplomas. We wanted to give senior executives a real opportunity to complete a Ph.D. level program and research based thesis which is at the same time, consistent with a busy schedule.

Around the world, individuals and organizations are experiencing rapid and unprecedented change in what they do, how they do it and even why they do it. Increasing globalization, geopolitical changes and the emergence of new technologies demand new ways of working and a new and diverse set of skills. The current COVID-19 context illustrates this perfectly!

The launch of the Global Executive Ph.D. programme coincides with the values of lifelong learning, part of ESCP’s key values and something which is required in today's world. We all need to learn continuously, regardless of what stage we are in our career. Study and academic challenges do not finish after an Executive MBA at 40! Today's new leaders are those who embrace lifelong learning and strive to continually increase their knowledge, skills and abilities.

What is its added value compared to an Executive MBA, a DBA or a Ph.D.?

They are very different programs.

An Executive Ph.D. is more research-oriented program requiring more personal motivation and drive since it is more “solitary” in a way. In comparison, an Executive MBA involves significant group work, team video conferences etc.!

Having said that, we are attracting an extremely strong cohort of international, high-level executives all sharing successful academic and professional careers. This network is quite unique.

Compared to a DBA, our Global Executive Ph.D. is also more research-oriented. The curriculum has been designed to the highest international standards and features our highly qualified professors who are experts in both research and pedagogy. In addition, our academic track allows some candidates to obtain a state-recognized degree, allowing them to become full-time professors, (something not possible with a DBA).

Compared to a traditional Ph.D., I clearly see two advantages for senior managers. It allows people with a busy schedule to complete a thesis while working. The second advantage is that candidate’s during the first stage of the program, have the time to refine their thesis topic and find the appropriate thesis advisor. In addition, we will require for the same level of quality for our full-time doctoral candidates as our executive doctoral candidates. The difference lies only in the format of the doctoral program and the profile of the candidates (significantly more senior for the Executive Ph.D.).

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For what audience is this program designed? Is it compatible with professional and personal life?

Our Global Executive Ph.D. at ESCP Business School is aimed at executives who are very curious, constantly learning, passionate about research and have a strong desire to challenge themselves to deep dive into a subject.

Often, high-level profiles with 15+ years of professional experience are looking for a new stage in their career. Some people want to build on their professional achievements, become an expert in their field and eventually share their experience by teaching a few courses. Others want to become full-time professors and need a doctoral-level program compatible with an executive's agenda to achieve this.

All the candidates we have admitted so far are senior executives working in a wide variety of sectors, finance, banking, retail, fashion, and all share this passion for knowledge, research and are willing to devote the time it takes to their thesis.

The program we have designed is fully adapted to busy schedules.

It is a 3 to 4 year program. The first year, the program is structured in three weeks (two in Paris, one in our Madrid or Berlin campus). Two weeks are devoted to research methods (what is research, how to do research, what type of data should be collected, etc.) and one week with advanced specialization courses or seminars. These seminars allow you to develop your research skills and deepen your understanding of topics related to the research areas you wish to learn from.

The primary objective is to equip you with the tools to write a PhD thesis. The second objective is to expose you to different thesis advisors and to find the faculty with which you will work closely for your thesis.

This part of the program is absolutely crucial, as we need to work with you to find the advisor that is technically, and personally, suited for you and your topic. The third objective is to help you refine further the subject of your thesis.

The following years - 2 or 3 years - are devoted to your PhD thesis, the central part of the program of course.

I am often asked what the workload is. Depending on the time, you need to spend an average of 15-20 hours per week on your thesis.

What are the main advantages of an Executive Ph.D.?

Exposure to the best international professors on the ESCP Business School campus as well as visiting professors from other top schools (such as Harvard, Wharton, Tsinghua, etc.).

Become a knowledge leader in your field. Personal & professional development at this vital stage of your career.

As people skills are an increasingly important strategic asset for companies. This program will increase your added value for your company, your customers or your partners. It can also be a good opportunity to share the knowledge you have on a particular topic, and develop your ability to become an opinion leader as well as make meaningful contributions in real-life situations.

Of course, you can join our influential worldwide network of 60,000 ESCP graduates in more than 150 countries!

The Global Executive Ph.D. will start in October 2020. For more information click here.

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