How to apply for a Doctorate of Business Administration
Learn how to write a Thesis Proposal for the DBA Entry Requirements
A Guide to Writing a Thesis Proposal
So, you have decided to take the plunge into doctoral research? The process of applying for a doctoral degree can be hard if you don’t have a defined thesis proposal yet.
What is the application process for a DBA?
To apply for a DBA you will normally need to submit documents proving all of the following:
- A Master’s degree in a related field
- Evidence of your qualifications in a CV outlining your relevant and extensive work experience
- Appropriate academic and professional references
- English test results or evidence of working in an English speaking environment
- In addition to these, you will need to submit a strong research Thesis Proposal.
When applying for a Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA) at Geneva Business School, you will be asked to write a proposal outlining your research thesis idea. While this may seem a difficult task at the outset, it can be made a little easier following these simple tips from our Doctorate Program Manager, Dr Oliver Elliott.
DBA Thesis Proposal Tips
- Your proposal needs to have one main research question. Don’t list multiple research questions.
- The project needs to analyze, not just describe, a business-relevant problem and potential solutions. Use why or how to ask the question, e.g. How can managers balance productivity and inclusivity when developing remote working policies?
- The project must have BOTH practical value AND a potential contribution to theory/ systematic business knowledge. This means you must contextualize your business within wider trends or concepts e.g. How do African startups internationalize?
- Try to be as narrow and detailed as possible - one company, industry or issue - and expand it out later on if appropriate. Your proposal is just a first draft and most candidates change their topics significantly.
- Take sustainability and responsible leadership seriously. Will your project contribute to the Global Compact or the achievement of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals?
- Do your best but don’t be a perfectionist. Avoid spelling and grammar errors, follow APA rules (cite everything!) and show off your professionalism. If you have worries, it’s not necessary to hide them - highlight areas you’re unsure about and different options you are considering.
Examples of current DBA student thesis topics:
- The Impact of Internet Banking on Customer Satisfaction in the South African Banking Sector: An emphasis on Self-Service Technology in Johannesburg.
- The Foreign Language Effect and its possible correlation with Startup Success.
- What is the impact of adopting Artificial Intelligence technologies on leadership?
- The Full Protection and Security Standard in International Investment and the Scope of Due Diligence
- Obligation towards the Business Transactions and its Impact on Foreign Investment.
- ‘Have you applied?’ The impact of different CSR dimensions on Employer Attractiveness in the luxury industry, the moderating role of Job Seeker’s Social identity.
- ‘Why did she leave?’ Psychometric predictors of turnover intention.
- Transform your innovation strategy by understanding behavioural finance in investment decisions
Meet the Program Manager
Dr Oliver Elliott
- Instructor in International Relations and Research at Geneva Business School.
- Historian of International Relations, Media and Global Development.
- DBA Program Manager and Head of Research.
- PhD from London School of Economics.
- Co-editor, Geneva Business School Magazine, Geneva Business School Research Review
Find out More
Click here for more information about our full-time Doctorate of Business Administration degree programs and take a look at the Entry Requirements or Fees pages.