Doctorate in Business Administration



  • September


  • Online

Graduation diploma

  • DBA

Teaching languages

  • English English


The DBA is the highest academic distinction in management: the Doctorate In Business Administration (DBA). The DBA is a three-year part-time programme particularly suited for qualified professionals and top corporate executives with important experience wishing to enlarge their skills and expertise with academic rigor for problem-solving.

During this programme, the student first familiarises with the methodology and applied research in management science (1 year) before carrying out his/her field study and preparing for the defense of the thesis (remaining 2 years).

Our DBA is an online programme designed for outstanding managers who hold a master’s degree or equivalent with at least five years of professional experience. It aims at developing critical thinking and research with high societal and managerial impacts. A DBA is aimed at experienced managers who want to have an impact in their organisation and in the society by leveraging academic research to solve concrete organisational problems.

Choosing to pursue doctoral studies is a life-changing decision. School choice, location, and specialisation can all impact your successful future as a business leader.



Minimum conditions for entry into the programme

  • A master’s degree or equivalents, such as MBA and EMBA, from an accredited university
  • Five years of professional experience
  • English level minimum of TOEFL 80, IELTS 6.5 or equivalent

Required documents to apply

  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Cover letter
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Proof of professional experience (at least five years)
  • Transcripts and copies of previous degrees
  • Certificate of English, minimum of TOEFL 80, IELTS 6.5 or equivalent
  • Proof of payment of the application fees
  • Copy of candidate’s passport
  • A digital ID picture (passport sized)
  • One page research proposal (optional)

The stages of the admission process

  • Evaluation of the application file
  • Motivational interview in English
  • Overview

  • Programme

  • Fees

Main Research Areas:

  • Banking and Finance
  • Business Management
  • Business and Economic Analysis
  • Digital Tranformations
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Family Business
  • Marketing
  • Strategy
  • Supply Chain Management

Please note that the thesis topic could be discussed and decided later with the supervisor(s). 

Some faculty profiles

Andrea Calabrò, Full Professor of Family Business & Entrepreneurship

Adnane Maalaoui, Full Professor of Entrepreneurship

Hans-Joerg von Mettenheim, Full Professor of Quantitative Finance & Risk Management

Duc Khuong Nguyen, Full Professor of Finance

Ilaria Dalla Pozza, Full Professor of Marketing

Julia Vincent-Ponroy, Assistant Professor of Management

Nicolas Topaloglou, Full Professor of Finance

Tra Tran, Associate Professor of Management 1st Year

In Short


Doctorate in Business Administration (DBA)


  • A master’s degree or equivalents, such as MBA and EMBA, from an accredited university
  • Five years of professional experience
  • English level minimum of TOEFL 80, IELTS 6.5 or equivalent


3 years

Tuition fees

  • Tuition fee: €21 000 for three years (on Paris campus)
  • For the first year, when registering, the student need to pay a deposit of €3 500
  • The remaining €3 500 will be paid when courses start
  • The tuition fees of €3 000 for each extended year
  • Application fee: € 100


Paris (France)

A presentation of the DBA Programme

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 a DBA program compared to a PhD?


The Doctorate in Business Administration is a doctoral professional program for managers and professionals who wish to carry out a research project by obtaining this prestigious diploma, while benefiting from quality research 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 for professionals wishing to develop new technical skills (academic rigor, research investigation and research methods) over the course of the three years of study to enrich their professional experience. For this reason, this course is ideally suited to candidates with sound professional experience.

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 existing scientific knowledge with the publication of a doctoral thesis, the DBA, on the contrary, provides the student with theories/methods that allow him/her to rethink and innovate his/her professional practices, operational and strategic management in a professional world. After a PhD, opportunities are more likely to arise for a research career in a university or other academic institutions, while the DBA offers a strong managerial advantage in the student's professional career. While a PhD can open the doors for a research career in a research-intensive institution, a DBA program can allow graduates to work as teachers or adjunct faculty members in academia.

It appears obvious that for a different purpose, the content will also be different. While the PhD focuses mainly on adding a strong theoretical contribution to existing academic knowledge, the DBA focuses more on problem solving of real business issues through academic rigor, 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.

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 and academic rigor;
  • 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.
  • The possibility to work in a University as a teacher or adjunct faculty; this program gives you the opportunity to teach in many prestigious establishments

At the IPAG Business School, the DBA is available on our Parisian campus, where the pedagogy is structured around several courses, but also seminars and international exchanges.


Courses & Seminars

DBA courses and seminars cover general and cross-cutting aspects of intercultural management, business strategy, entrepreneurship, marketing, 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 (research supervisor) 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.

Academic Process

1st Year

The courses of the DBA program are completed during the first year, at the end of which students are required to write their research proposal. A supervisor is then assigned.

During first year, students will benefit from 7 courses related to applied management research and research methods and design. These courses provide students with fundamental theories and concepts and sound research design and research methodology.

2nd & 3rd Year

The field stage of the program takes a minimum of two years to complete. DBA candidates will cooperate with a supervisor to conduct their field studies and write the thesis.

During this period, DBA candidates have to meet, physically or via videoconferences regularly, with the supervisor to report on the work progress. The thesis shall be written in a way that may allow subsequent publications in academic and/or professional journals.


Tuition fees

  • Tuition fee: €21 000 for three years (on Paris campus). The student needs to pay €7 000 to validate the registration in each academic year.
  • Upon request addressed to the Program Director – Ilaria Dalla Pozza (, the student can be allowed to pay annual tuition fee in two installments. For the first year, when registering, the student need to pay a deposit of €3 500.
  • The remaining €3 500 will be paid when courses start. 
  • The students can request an extension of their study for up to two years maximum. The tuition fees of €3 000 for each extended year should be paid as soon as the extension request is validated.
  • Application fee: € 100