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The ultimate degree for business leaders

Part-time PhD programme in Business

If you want to become the pioneer of organisational innovation and change then the PhD programme in Business is the right choice for you.

How to apply for this PhD?

You can apply for participation in the Part-Time PhD Programme (start January 2022) by taking the following steps:

Step 1: Request a personal link to securely (through encrypted file transfer) upload your application documents. You can do so by sending an email to the programme coordinator. You will receive this link per email.  

Step 2: Submit the following documents before December 1, 2021:

  • A description of your research topic, including 1) problem statement (what is the issue?); 2) a research question; 3) the theoretical perspective, and 4) a potential research methodology and research design (maximum 2000 words)
  • An updated CV with complete contact details
  • Copies of academic degree + transcripts (certified): an MSc degree or equivalent is required*.
  • A copy of a valid passport (and if applicable a valid Schengen zone visa)**
  • A copy of the English language certification, attesting you excellent command of written and spoken English, certified by an official English language test IELTS or TOEFL, or a diploma from an English taught programme

*Diploma’s from professional programmes, certificate programmes, non-academic masters, and postgraduate programmes are generally not accepted as an entry qualification. To assess the eligibility of your degree, please contact the programme coordinator.

** Since this is a part-time module-based programme, we are not able to organise a Dutch study / residence visa for non-EU participants.

Who is this PhD programme for?

The Part-time PhD in Business programme is specifically designed for business leaders and professionals, who aspire to pursue a PhD on a subject relevant to their own business practice next to a full-time working commitment. 

The programme is highly international, and welcomes participants from all geographical and professional backgrounds. 

  • Main industries: Consulting / professional services, banking, higher education, energy, IT, engineering, electronics / high technology, food production and marketing.
  • Average work experience: 15-20 years (range: 1-45)
  • Average age: 40-45 (range: 25–67)
  • Gender: roughly 50% female, 50% male
  • International participants: 40-45%
  • International participants place of residence: Armenia, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Egypt, France, Germany, Hungary, Japan, Latvia, Qatar, Romania, Spain, Russia, Switzerland, UK, and USA.

Practical Information

  • Registration Deadline

    The registration deadline to apply for the PhD programme in 2022 is December 1st, 2021.

    If you wish to register after this final registration deadline, please contact the programme coordinator Niki Konijn to discuss the possibilities.

  • Tuition Fees
    • Years 1 & 2 (January-December): € 7,900 per programme year
    • Year 3 (January-December): € 7,00 or € 4,500 per programme year, depending on the individual trajectory*
    • Year 4, and all subsequent years (January-December): € 2,500 per programme year

    The total amount of the tuition fees varies between € 20,800 and € 26,200 (in case the PhD is completed within the four years planned). The fees include the registration, the costs of participation in the modules, individual supervision, access to literature, access to other ABRI courses (optional), participation in the PhD Summer School, lunches and access to various VU services. If desired, participants can choose to purchase an individual programme years. However, it is not possible to purchase individual modules

    Please note that the tuition fees do not include travel expenses and costs associated with the attendance of international conferences.

    *The tuition fees for the 3rd year amount to:

    • € 7,900 if the participant chooses to take another full programme year (optional)
    • € 4,500 is the participant chooses to participate in the 3+ year programme (optional)
    • € 2,500 if the student chooses not to attend courses and works independently with his/her supervisors and promoter only.
  • Duration

    This PhD in Business is designed as a four-year programme. In practice, participants can take between 3-6 years to finalize their PhD dissertations, depending on their individual progress.

  • Time Investment

    This programme requires you to spend at least 16 hours a week on average, on the preparation for the modules and on your research project.

  • Starting Date

    The next PhD programme in Business starts in January 2022.

  • Language

    The PhD programme is entirely taught in English.

  • More Information

    For general questions on the programme and on the registration procedure, please contact the Program Coordinator

    Mr. Niki Konijn MA

    +31 20 59 85 667

    For research-related questions, please contact the Program Director

    Prof. Dr. Svetlana Khapova

    +31 20 59 82 414

We'd love to hear from you

Please contact the Programme Coordinator Niki Konijn for more information, or to schedule an individual meeting. For research-related questions, please contact the Programme Director Svetlana Khapova

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
School of Business and Economics Executive Education
De Boelelaan 1105

General questions?

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Niki Konijn
  • Prof. dr. Svetlana Khapova
  • Head of Department, Department of Management & Organisation, Programme Director part-time PhD in Business
  • Professor of Organisational Behaviour, and Head of Section HRM/OB
  • + 31 20 59 82414
Svetlana Khapova