What are the perceptions of business schools worldwide concerning the future of the Doctorate in Business Administration (DBA) Market?

doctorate in business administration survey

What are the perceptions of business schools worldwide concerning the future of the Doctorate in Business Administration (DBA) Market?

This is the subject of the online survey launched on March 21 by EFMD in partnership with the Executive DBA Council (EDBAC) and Le Sphinx Software Solutions. It is also a highly relevant question because, from experience, we already know that points of view about the DBA market are likely to diverge.

Some[1] consider that the DBA market is in an emergent phase due to the maturity of the MBA market, the need for new business models and knowledge, the need to fill the gap between academic research and managerial practice, and so on.

Others argue that doctoral programmes are not for managers, that this creates confusion with the traditional PhD, etc.

Because the mission of business schools is to create management knowledge and to meet the needs of companies and managers, this survey has been prepared by a working group comprised of 15 participants from a range of organisations[2].

The survey includes open questions that allow respondents to develop their arguments and closed questions.

The beginning of the survey asks, “what first comes to mind” when thinking about the DBA? Respondents are then invited to give their overall perception of the evolution of the market and to reflect on the factors that might explain the growth or the decline of the market. Finally, an important question concerning the distinction between DBAs, PhDs, and Executive PhDs is raised, as well as the question of the future format (in-person, online or blended).

Please click below to access the survey:

DBA survey


The various partners of the survey will disseminate the results. Ensure you receive the results and keep in touch with the EFMD doctoral community by subscribing to the EFMD Doctoral Programme & Research newsletter.

EFMD Doctoral Community

Michel Kalika is the President of the Business Science Institute.

[1] Kalika, Michel, Stephen Platt, (2022) The Doctor of Business Administration: Taking your professional practice to the next level. Ideas for Leaders Publishing, 262 pages.

[2] Aston Business School (Nicholas Oregan); Business Science Institute (Michel Kalika, Jean-Pierre Helfer, Stephen Platt); CEIBS (Yuan Ding); CENTRUM PUCP (Ruben Guevara); Cranfield School of Management (Nicky Yates); Dauphine-PSL (El Mouhoub Mouhoud); EDBAC (Louis Grabowski); EFMD (Alfons Sauquet & Jean-Alexis Spitz); FVG (Luiz Brito); Gordon Institute of Business (Helena Barnard); Pepperdine Graziadio Business School (Cristina Gibson & Nelson Granados); Porto Business School (Ramon O’Callaghan);  SKEMA Business School (Alice Guilhon).


  1. Professor Peter Stokes on May 13, 2023 at 14:56

    The DBA has probably one of the most promising markets in the 21st century. My observations and experience of the demand for DBA globally is striking and notable.

    The DBA – and within its DNA make-up as a qualification and process/ethos – has the capability to provide a major change transformation for executives and companies.

  2. Pr Marc VALAX on May 19, 2023 at 11:20

    Providing with a DBA a significant contribution to knowledge is not as intimidating as it sounds. Often DBA students will interpret ‘significant’ as meaning revolutionary. This is not the case. Significance means contributing something worthwhile. The very nature of research requires new evidence and arguments to be presented for assessment and critique. The contribution to research, therefore, does not have to change the course of a research field, but merely provide a new insight to expand the current academic discussions and can lead to a better global performance of companies. Ethical dillemas are more and more important as well in a DBA while understanding and explaining companies’s performance insights. Every scientific research conducted with human beings must have a clear and relevant justification, participants must be freely and properly informed about the research including its risks, benefits, and consequences, and their agreement on participating must be given without them being convinced. Finding the best way to deal with in-depth interviews on sensible themes nowadays in companies is a challenge in order to ensure the protection of participants without jeopardizing the quality of the research. With these pespective we can have within a DBA a strong impact on practical contributions and boosting the DBAs as the most promising market.