Ph.D. in International Business

Ph.D. Program

The International Business program prepares a small number of students for careers as researchers and teachers in academia.

The faculty in International Business at Rutgers University form the core faculty for the program. Students also work with other members of the doctoral faculty of the Department of Management and Global Business.

The globalization and growing interdependence of national economies is an established fact. Students in the international business major study the interface between the competitive advantages of countries, the role of national governments and supranational organizations, and the strategies of international firms.

The program is interdisciplinary. It draws upon the writings of scholars in economics, management, organization theory, science and technology studies, and political science. Students have opportunities to choose elective courses from disciplines such as finance, marketing and management science.

Students have access to faculty on both the Newark and New Brunswick campuses of Rutgers University. In particular, they have opportunities to participate in the work of the Division of Global Affairs on the Newark campus. Fellowships and teaching assistantships are available on a competitive basis.

Requirements

Additional enrollments may also be required:

  • Students are sometimes required to enroll in non-degree courses to improve their English or their writing. They may also need to enroll in the non-degree course Teacher Training Seminar as part of their preparation for teaching. These enrollments require payment of tuition, but they do not count towards the 72 credits required for the degree.
  • Students must enroll in 26:553:689 every semester until they have defended a dissertation proposal. This registration requires their attendance in the Management & Global Business department's weekly seminar. A grade is given, but the enrollment is for zero credits and no tuition is charged.

Full-time students are expected to take three courses for degree credit each semester during the first two years. They must then take the qualifying examination at the end of their second academic year. During the last two years, they work mainly on their dissertation, but they often take an additional methodology course during their third and fourth years and may be asked to do so by their adviser and doctoral coordinator.

Within a year after passing the qualifying examination, the student should defend a dissertation proposal.

Course Information

Foundation/methodology requirement (4 courses)

Students should take these two courses in the first year:

  • 26:620:557 Social Science Research Methods
  • 26:960:577 Statistical Linear Models

In addition, they should take at least two other doctoral level methodology or statistics courses. Students may consider the following:

  • 26:620:660 Qualitative Research Methods
  • 26:830:545 Research Design
  • 26:620:685 Survey Research
  • 26:223:544 Econometrics - Cross Sectional
  • 26:198:622 Machine Learning
  • 26:198:644 Data Mining

Excellent statistics and methodology courses are also available to our students in Statistics, Psychology, Sociology, Economics, SMLR, and SCILS at Rutgers-New Brunswick, in Psychology at Rutgers-Newark, and in Mathematical Sciences and Computer Science at NJIT.

Core (5 courses)

Students should take at least five of the following seven courses:

  • 26:553:501 Cross-border Mgmt: Institutions, Firms, and Industry Value Chains
  • 26:553:601 Theory of International Business
  • 26:553:602 History of International Business
  • 26:553:604 Corporate Innovation and International Business
  • 26:553:605 National Innovation Policies and International Business
  • 26:553:607 Global Political Economy
  • 26:620:677 Culture and Organizations

Electives (3 courses)

Three courses approved by the adviser, the doctoral coordinator, and the doctoral director.

First early research requirement (equivalent to one course): Students should prepare for the early research requirement by taking Statistical Linear Models and Research Methods in the first year. Then they write a paper (usually a literature review) with a faculty member, to be presented to the department during the fall semester.

Second early research requirement (equivalent to one course): Write a paper (ideally a dissertation proposal) with a faculty member.

Qualifying examination: The qualifying examination, in conformity with University regulations, will be taken at the end of the second year of coursework. It will consist of 4 sets of in-class questions, administered over a two day period. The student will be examined on the material covered in the five major courses studied during the two years of course work.

Other rules and requirements: For details of rules and requirements that apply to all doctoral students in RBS, see Policies and Procedures.

Course Descriptions

26:553:501 - Cross-border Management: Institutions, Firms, and Industry Value Chains

Fall 2007 and every second fall thereafter.
This course explores challenges facing modern corporations in organizing cross-border activity that spans multiple stages of the value chain. The course contains several modules, including (but not limited to): Institutional theory and comparative management; theories of firm boundaries; management of inter-firm supply networks across national borders; markets for technology and the changing division of innovative labor in industry value chains. The course draws heavily on current literature in management, economics, and organization theory. Emphasis is placed on empirical research. Students are expected to critique papers, synthesize and present material to the class, and write a term paper.

26:553:601 - Theory of International Business

Fall 2006 and every second fall thereafter.
This course provides a critical overview of the major theoretical approaches in the international business literature. These strands of analysis can be grouped under the five headings of the market power, internalization, eclectic paradigm, competitive international industry and macroeconomic approaches. We examine both the differences and the scope for complementarities between these alternative means of thinking about international business. Drawing upon this analytical background, the course then reviews the key areas of recent research focus. These crucial new research issues include the role of location in international business, the strategy and organization of multinational corporations, subsidiary level development, cross-border alliances and international mergers and acquisitions. The course concludes with an assessment of the role of methodological design and prospective new directions in international business research

26:553:602 - History of International Business

Fall 2007 and every second fall thereafter.
This course examines the history of international business, with a particular focus upon the context and determinants of the growth over the last 150 years of the largest multinational corporations (MNCs).

26:553:604 - Corporate Innovation & International Business

Spring 2006 and every second spring thereafter.
This course shows how the multinational firm depends critically on its technological and related skills to achieve its central strategic objectives. Introductory classes consider the determinants and characteristics of corporate technological change, and the linkages between science and technology, and the consequences of their geographical localization for international business. Then we assess the contention that corporate strategy should include a strategy for managing innovation, the purpose of which is deliberately to accumulate and exploit firm-specific knowledge. The course examines the implications of technological change as a learning process, for inter-company technology-based alliances, for international technology transfer, and for capturing the returns to innovation in the multinational firm. The innovative records of large and small firms are compared. The use of corporate patent statistics is appraised as a means of measuring patterns of innovation at the firm level. The course concludes with a discussion of systems of innovation, and of technology policies.

26:553:605 - National Innovation Policies and International Business

Spring 2007 and every second spring thereafter.
Examines the role of technology in economic development and national innovation systems as they evolve in the globalizing economy.

26:553:607 - Global Political Economy

Spring 2006 and Fall 2006, and every second spring and fall thereafter. This course does not satisfy major requirements in International Business, or minor requirements in Organization Management.
This course offers a global perspective on long term change in the world economy, and the interaction between countries, regulatory systems and business firms. Attention is especially focused on the dynamics of international trade and investment, including the relationship between trade and economic growth, trade imbalances and protectionism, and the impact of technological innovation on international competitiveness. The role of economic and political institutions is also a central feature of our discussion, including the international trading and financial systems, national systems of innovation and political economy, and the interaction between multinational companies and both the state and multilateral institutions. The course also looks at the possibility of long waves in the world economy, and examines a variety of alternative perspectives on the origins and processes of globalization.


  • 26:553:685 Special Topics Research in International Business
  • 26:553:686 First Early Research Seminar in International Business
  • 26:553:687 Second Early Research Seminar in International Business
  • 26:553:688 Independent Study in International Business
  • 26:553:799 Dissertation Research in International Business

Please note: Links to recent syllabi are provided where possible. In some cases, the link goes to the web site for the individual faculty member, where the syllabus is maintained. In other cases, the link allows you to download the syllabus. Other syllabi are available in the Program Office.

These syllabi are provided as information to potential applicants. They should also help current students make their individual study plans. But they are subject to change. Students should not buy books or make other plans related to a course until they have confirmed with the instructor that they have an up-to-date syllabus for the semester in which they are taking the course.