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Postgraduate research

Make an impact through research
Embarking on a research degree with us is an opportunity to work alongside some of the world's brightest and most accomplished academics.

Our postgraduate research program is designed to develop students with an excellent academic background into intellectual leaders who will contribute to business education and research that makes meaningful, real-world impact in the 21st century.

We have the drive to challenge traditional ways of thinking, and will provide you with supportive and collaborative research community to develop your research skills and build a knowledge base in your chosen discipline.

Why study with us?

  • Choose from a wide range of research areas across our diverse academic disciplines.
  • Research scholarship options are available to support you while undertaking research.
  • Work with industry leading researchers who are committed to contributing research with real-world impact.
Scholarships available:
Business School Research Scholarships

The Business School offers 4-year scholarships for incoming students. The scholarships cover tuition fees and provide a stipend of $35,000 per annum for living costs. In addition to this stipend, scholarship recipients will have an opportunity to receive an additional amount, normally at least $10,000 per annum, in return for carrying out specific teaching duties. Details of these teaching duties will be given at the time of the scholarship offer.

To be considered for a scholarship, submit an online application for course candidature. Indicate where prompted that you wish to be considered for the Research Training Program (RTP) Scholarship. Consideration for the Business School Research Scholarship will be automatic. 

Applying for a research degree

To be considered for a research degree at the University of Sydney Business School you need to submit an application through Sydney Courses via one of the following links:

Once your application has been submitted, we will assess your qualifications to ensure that you meet the minimum eligibility requirements, and identify a supervisor for your research project. You do not need to contact a supervisor before applying (see note).

If a suitable supervisor is identified, you will be contacted for an interview. Interviews are usually conducted via Skype or in person.

After your interview, your supervisor, the relevant Discipline and the Director of Doctoral Studies will review your application, and if they all agree to endorse your candidature, you will be issued an offer letter.

  • Only complete applications can be processed. Applications that have been received but that remain incomplete at the closing date will be considered for the next semester intake. The Admissions Office or the Business School Research Unit will contact you should any additional documents or actions be required for your application.
  • Only applications that meet the minimum entry requirements will be forwarded to the Discipline. Applications that do not meet the minimum entry requirements will be rejected.
  • Due to the application form being standardised, it will ask for your name and proof of contact with a supervisor. In order to progress your application you may put “to be confirmed” in the supervisor name section and you can upload a screenshot of this page (or any other alternate document) to the proof of supervisor section. The Business School does not require this information at the point of application.

As a part of your application, you will be asked to submit a research proposal. There are three different types of research proposals that are required depending upon which Discipline you are applying to: a Statement of Research Interests, an Indicative Research Proposal or a Developed Research Proposal.

To see which type of research proposal you will need to provide, please refer to the admission requirements table (pdf, 126KB).

This is a 1-2 page statement detailing your research interests. The statement can include potential research areas, topics, and methodologies. The statement will be used to match your interests with a research supervisor. If you are invited to proceed with your application, you will be required to consult with the supervisor prior to writing a suitable research proposal to be included with your application. Please note applications cannot be processed unless a research proposal is attached.

The indicative research proposal is a brief document with a maximum length of 1500 words (if desired, you may add a paragraph outlining other research interests at the end of this document).

The indicative proposal is intended to provide a starting point for discussion with your appointed supervisor. This discussion will lead to a draft research proposal that must be added to your application.

The indicative research proposal may include:

  • Description of the project – what is your research question/hypothesis?
  • Brief review of literature in the area that you may be aware of.
  • Expected research contribution – what do you expect your research to contribute to existing knowledge. Is it innovative and/or original?
  • The proposed methodology – qualitative, quantitative or mixed methods?
  • Potential data sources.

This is a detailed document (3000-6000 words) that outlines your research question, chosen methodology, understanding of the current literature, and particular contribution to the field. The developed research proposal is intended to clearly set out the aims and potential significance of the research. It should have the following elements:

  • Introduction – articulating the research problem and why investigating it matters.
  • Review of existing literature – this should be a succinct overview of the most relevant and recent literature related to the research phenomena. It should lead to a clearly articulated preliminary research question.
  • Methodology – a description of your proposed methodology. Here you should explain how you plan to undertake the research and how your methods will allow you to answer your research question. Please outline any past experience you have in applying such a methodology.
  • Potential significance of the research: What are the implications of your research for theory and/or practice?
  • Bibliography - at this stage the bibliography does not need to be complete. Its purpose is to give the supervisor an indication of the reading you have already done (or plan to do).

Please refer to the Master of Philosophy (Business) course page or Doctor of Philosophy (Business) course page for intake and application dates.

Female student outside Business School
Bonnie Stanway, PhD Candidate
“I completed a Master of Education (International Education) at the University of Sydney. My research led me to the Business School, and since then I have worked across multiple disciplines, teaching and conducting further research. I saw how the Business School offers ample opportunities for doctoral students to engage in innovative and unconventional research into important issues for industry and business education."
Discover our Doctor of Philosophy