• March
  • September


  • Part-time

Graduation diploma

  • DBA

Teaching languages

  • English English
  • Chinese Chinese
  • French French


The DBA is the highest academic distinction in management: the Doctorate In Business Administration (DBA). The programme is aimed at senior and experienced executives. During this course, you first familiarise yourself with the methodology and applied research in management science (1 year) before carrying out your field study and preparing for the defence of your thesis at the end of the course (2 years).



Minimum conditions for entry into the programme
 Master level diploma
 5 years of professional experience certified by the employer
 Minimum TOEFL iBT level: 80

Elements of the application file
 Curriculum vitæ (CV)
 Proof of identity
 Copy of diplomas obtained
 TOEFL test score
Work experience certification

The stages of the admission process
 Evaluation of the application file
 Motivational interview in English

DBA in Paris (France): Duc Khuong Nguyen - duc.nguyen@ipag.fr
DBA in Tehran (Iran): Négar Terrany - n.terrany@ipag.fr
DBA in Guangdong (Chine) & DBA in Accra (Ghana): Raphaël Lissillour - r.lissillour@ipag.fr

  • Descriptif
  • Programme
  • Career
  • Fees


1st year

  • Part-time

The first phase of the DBA allows you to grasp the theoretical and methodological concepts of research. The year ends with a Grand Comprehensive Exam. During this exam, you support your thesis proposal and must demonstrate complete mastery of the field in which you intend to make your academic contribution.

In addition, you take courses in personal and professional development.

2nd & 3rd Year

  • Part-time

The research phase of the programme lasts two years. Accompanied by a thesis director, you conduct your field study for one year, after which you propose a first "draft" which will be refined until the defence of your final thesis.

In Short




  • Master level diploma
  • 5 years of professional experience certified by the employer
  • Minimum TOEFL iBT level: 80


3 years


  • Paris (France)
  • Guangdong (China)
  • Tehran (Iran)
  • Accra (Ghana)

Tuition fees

  • €21 000 for the DBA in Paris  (France)
  • €17 000 for the DBA in Tehran (Iran)

Our DBA programme in Paris To find out more

Do you have a Master's degree and would like to open up new career opportunities? Discover what the Doctorate of Business Administration can bring to your professional project and your career!


Doctorate in Business Administration: Description and Principles


What is the DBA?

The Doctorate in Business Administration is a doctoral program taught by the prestigious Grandes Ecoles for managers and professionals who wish to carry out a research project by obtaining this prestigious diploma, while benefiting from quality supervision and support from a thesis director who is an expert in the field chosen by the student.

This high school program is very popular with professionals who wish to develop new technical skills over the course of three years of study to enrich their professional experience. For this reason, this course is ideally suited to students who are already working in a professional capacity.

The DBA is mainly known for its innovative approaches in the fields of business management: management, finance, human resources, marketing, international business, etc. It allows its students to bring new methods and strategies to their current or future companies.


What's the difference between a Doctorate/PhD and a DBA?


The DBA is easily mistaken for the doctorate, also called PhD. While the standard of study and the number of years of study are identical, these two degrees do not target the same profiles and do not have the same objectives: while the PhD requires the student-researcher to work on a project that makes a significant contribution to scientific knowledge with the publication of a doctoral thesis, the DBA, for its part, provides the student with theories that allow him or her to rethink and innovate his or her professional practices and operational and strategic management in a professional world. After a PhD, opportunities are more likely to arise for a teaching and research career in a university or other academic institution, while the DBA offers a strong managerial advantage in the student's professional career.

It appears obvious that for a different purpose, the content will also be different. While the PhD focuses mainly on an analysis of conceptual and theoretical content and the empirical validation of theories, the DBA benefits from a more management-oriented methodological approach allowing its students to evolve professionally in their current or future position.

In contrast to the DBA, the PhD is a doctoral training program mandated by the French government, which leads the student to obtain a recognized doctoral degree. To find out whether the degree you are considering will be state-approved, you will need to check with your host institution to find out whether your enrollment in a doctoral school is part of your program.


Why should I do a Doctorate in Business Administration at IPAG Paris?

The DBA is a program of outstanding quality that brings many career benefits and solutions to a professional career:

  • the shared knowledge and the achievement of a certain level of expertise in a specialized field of business management;
  • the opportunity to develop one's business in a particular field;
  • the possibility of starting your own business with a solid background;
  • the improved professional insertion within the framework of a professional evolution in a company or the job hunting for a new position;
  • the development of new skills through a better level of education and the improvement of certain concepts while preserving one's professional activity.

At the IPAG Business School, the DBA is one of  our student programs available on our Parisian campus, where the pedagogy is structured around several courses, but also seminars and international exchanges (from Paris to Shanghai via Canton).


Courses & Seminars

DBA courses and seminars cover general and cross-cutting aspects of intercultural management, business strategy, entrepreneurship, project management and CSR. Over 3 years, 120 ECTS credits are earned with 660 hours of courses (applied research) and coaching.


Coaching/ Guidance

The research theme is openly chosen. Regardless of your topic, IPAG will offer you the support of an expert who can advise you, answer your questions and guide you throughout your research project and thesis writing.



The DBA involves several hours of research workshops. These sessions allow students to meet and share their experiences, findings and methodological tips.


What is the admission criteria for the Paris DBA at IPAG?

Regardless of whether you graduated from a MBA or any other master's degree with five years of higher education, you can apply for a DBA at IPAG under certain admission criteria:

  • hold a master's degree with at least 5 years of professional experience;
  • have a minimum TOEFL score of 80 or equivalent;
  • motivational interview in English.

At IPAG, admittance to the DBA is based on an online application.

1st Year

Applied research

  • Strategic management
  • Entrepreneurship & International management
  • Organisational structures & Change management
  • Corporate financing & Investment

Research methodology

  • Research design 1: problem formulation
  • Research design 2: research instruments
  • Research methodology 1: from qualitative to quantitative analysis
  • Research methodology 2: from case study to action research


Personal and professional development

  • Leadership: from personality to motivation
  • Executive communication: from effective presentation to strategic communication
  • Cross-cultural management: from national traits to cultural intelligence
  • Research dissemination: from knowledge translation to dissemination channels


2nd & 3rd Year

2-year research phase


The Doctorate in Business Administration (DBA) enables executives to legitimise their professional experience through academic work. Thus, they offer themselves the opportunity of a new impetus in their career. In addition, this program gives you the opportunity to teach in the most prestigious establishments.


Tuition fees

  • €21 000 for the DBA in Paris (France)
  • €17 000 for the DBA in Tehran (Iran)