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Why a CJBS PhD?

CJBS PhD students

What sets Cambridge Judge Business School (CJBS) apart is our collective determination to engage in research that really matters for business and society. Our success is evidenced by our leading performance in the impact category in the latest UK research evaluation. Our faculty and PhD students see research as a means to create impact beyond a group of peer academics and scholars; we embed our research work in deep engagements with organisations that wrestle with complex and important practical issues. Our links with practitioner partners ensure that our research adds value to society, while our academic communities keep our argumentation rigorous.

We encourage you to develop a programme of research that contributes to addressing a major challenge for society. This could be anything from the rise of frugal innovation in India to stubbornly low female representation in top executive positions, the ongoing 'patent cliff' threat in the pharmaceutical industry or the spiralling cost of health care. Whatever you choose, the starting point for your research should be an important, thorny issue that is associated with very real, typically messy, practical challenges.

During your PhD you will prise this issue apart and learn to understand and engage with it at the deepest level. Guided by your supervisors, you will break down the major challenge into manageable research projects that form the outline of a research programme. These projects will allow you to rigorously address aspects of the big issue by drawing on theory and methods in the tradition of your chosen business school discipline. You will carry out your research in collaboration with faculty and, importantly, in close contact with senior practitioners and organisations that are actively engaging with your chosen challenge.

This research process lends itself to the formation of impactful future scholars rather than 'ivory tower' academics. If you have the desire to pursue academically rigorous arguments and the entrepreneurial spirit to create solutions for challenging problems, then this is the programme for you - there is no better place to channel your ambition and emerge as one of a new breed of business school academics that uses the rigour of academia to tackle society's big issues.

The impact-led research strategy at CJBS leverages the School's unique position in one of the world's greatest universities - a university that is home to more Nobel laureate affiliates than any other - as well as its convenient proximity to the City of London and location at the centre of the European high-tech and entrepreneurship hub, with one of the largest academic health sciences centres in Europe. Together, these unique factors attract leaders from across industries and allow our faculty and students to forge the close-knit networks of corporate and academic partners that are the basis for high-impact work.

During your PhD years, you have the opportunity to pursue your educational and research interests unencumbered by other responsibilities. We want you to work hard and capitalise on the talents and expertise of your teachers and fellow students. But Cambridge is about so much more than study: we believe in the value of diversity and the opportunity to learn from other perspectives and cultures, and at Cambridge you will build a lifelong network of friends who come from a wide range of cultures and pursue diverse interests and ambitions.

Nicos Savva
When I started my PhD at Cambridge Judge Business School I knew I was embarking on a challenging programme that would equip me with the resources to do original research. What I did not realise was the extent to which I was going to be a part of a vibrant and intellectually stimulating community.
Dr Nicos Savva, Associate Professor of Management Science & Operations, London Business School