Skip to content

Nottingham Business School Studentships

Nottingham Business School’s (NBS) purpose is to provide research and education that combines academic excellence with positive impact on people, business and society.

Students chatting NBS

As a world leader in experiential learning and personalisation, joining the NBS as a researcher is an opportunity to achieve your potential. We have an unrivalled level of engagement with business, public and voluntary organisations and thus is known as the "business school for business".

We are accredited by EQUIS and AACSB, which are internationally recognised hallmarks of excellence and quality for business education. NBS is one of only six UK business schools recognised as a PRME Champion, and help up as an exemplar by the United Nations of Principles of Responsible Management Education (PRME).

We are committed to excellence in research that combines academic rigour with beneficial impact on social, economic and societal welfare, which is facilitated and defined by their research centres

NTU Fully-funded PhD Studentship Scheme 2022

You are invited to submit your PhD proposal either for one of the three research projects or for one of the research themes as advertised by our research centres and groups (please see below for details). When making an application for a studentship, you will need to demonstrate how your proposal aligns with our research strengths and themes, so ensure you are familiar with our research centres and research groups (you can explore these below). You can also visit Research degrees in NBS to familiarise yourself about the application process, the NBS PhD experience and other details.

If you have any queries or want to discuss anything prior to your submission, please email the NBS PhD Programme Director and Course Leader, Dr. Ishan Jalan or NBS Associate Dean for Research, Prof. Alistair Bruce. We look forward to receiving your proposals.

PhD Studentship Opportunities in Nottingham Business School Live Webinar

Book your place onto our live webinar on Friday 7 January 2022 between 11 am and 12 pm. You'll get the chance to chat with our researchers and ask any questions you may have.

Our research centres

Centre for People, Work and Organizational Practice

The research within the Centre explores the ways in which leadership and HR practices influence employees’ attitudes and behaviours at work.

Responsible and Sustainable Business Lab

Founded in 2015 with the goal of supporting income generation, publication and business impact within the business school and across disciplines at NTU.

Centre for Economics, Policy and Public Management

The centre brings together research on economic and policy issues and public management across the whole public sector at international, national, regional and local scales.

Centre for International Business Strategy and Decisions

Exploring new avenues with a diverse set of theories and methods to identify configurations and reconfigurations in international business, global sustainability and geo-political settings.

Work, Informalisation and Place Research Centre

Providing innovative, interdisciplinary studies focusing on the spatial dimensions of contemporary work and employment in sectors such as hand car washes, nail bars, and small-scale garment manufacturing.

Centre for Behavioural Sciences

Research at this centre employs methods from various disciplines to gain deeper insights into human behaviour and decision making.

Marketing and Consumer Studies Research Centre

Marketing and Consumer Studies Research Centre (MACS) includes academics with a wide range of interests and expertise across consumer behaviour, branding and brand identity, services research, and tourism experiences, amongst others.

Our research themes

Workplace wellbeing after the COVID19 pandemic

Centre: NBS Health and Wellbeing Research Group

The wellbeing agenda, including both physical and mental health, has been significantly advanced across a wide range of sectors over the past decade. The COVID19 pandemic has brought about new challenges for workplace wellbeing including, but not limited to, new ways of working, distributed workforces, and management structures, changed status of Health and Safety professionals. These new challenges are likely to shape approaches to wellbeing in the coming years. We welcome proposals that concern any aspect of wellbeing interventions and lived experiences of physical and mental health in the workplace.

Migrant entrepreneurship

Centre: Innovation, Digitisation, Entrepreneurship and Operations Research Group

The migration debate has produced polarised views around the globe. Political scientists perceive migrants as an administrative and economic burden to their host nations (Valentino et al., 2019), but economists and business commentators emphasise their economic potentials (Hart and Acs, 2011). Those in favour of migration identify migrant entrepreneurs as an important group of migrants, that cannot be ignored, because of their socio–economic roles in their societies. In keeping with a chorus of voices advocating for their recognition, entrepreneurship studies (e.g., Aliaga–Isla and Rialp, 2013; Dubic et al., 2020) are calling for more research on migrant entrepreneurs to develop comprehensive understanding of the social and economic impact of their entrepreneurial activities. This view is informed by the roles they perform in both their country of residence (COR) and country of origin (COO) whereby they create job opportunities, act as intermediaries in complex international supply chains of goods and services (Drori et al., 2009; Kalu & Okafar, 2021). Crucially, those who advocate for migrant entrepreneurship position migrant entrepreneurs as major contributors of local and regional economic developments as they pay government levies in both their COR and COO (Aluko et al. 2020).

But and despite their reported economic and social roles, entrepreneurship research tend to contrast their business opportunities with those of native entrepreneurs (Vinogradov & Isaksen, 2008). This approach often overlooks the trajectory of the entrepreneurial processes migrant entrepreneurs follow in creating their new ventures. Considering their liability of foreignness and outsidership (Gurău et al., 2020; Johnson and Vahlne, 2009), it is conceivable that the processes they go through in creating their new ventures provide academics an opportunity to construct new theorisations based on their entrepreneurship processes (Alvarez & Barney, 2013; Zahra, 2007) as well as inform the migration and economic debate (Valentino et al., 2019). Accordingly, this proposal invites potential PhD students that pay attention on the entrepreneurship processes of migrant entrepreneurs.

The research should aim to develop new insights to account for the stages that define the route migrant entrepreneurs follow when creating a new venture in a foreign country. Such insights can be crucial to various stakeholders. For political scientist, the new knowledge can inform their migration and economic debates, and academics in the field of entrepreneurship will have the opportunity extend and better understand the theoretical constructs that underpin the entrepreneurship process (Shane & Venkataraman, 2001; Zahra, 2007). That has the potential to advance research on entrepreneurship and regional development projects the entrepreneurial propensities of migrant entrepreneurs. Crucially, such insights can lead to instructive frameworks on how best to support and nature migrant entrepreneurs for social and economic benefits. Moreover and most importantly, governmental institutions can better target migrant entrepreneurs through entrepreneurship policy initiatives.

Sustainable Marketing and Responsible Consumption

Centre: Marketing and Consumer Studies

Marketing and Consumer Studies Research Centre invites applications addressing the wider topic of Sustainable Marketing and Responsible Consumption. Through responsible and customer-focused approaches, marketing studies can make a substantive contribution to the better understanding consumption within the interconnected domains of environment, economy and society. Currently, as we try to ‘build back better’ and recover from global crisis it is especially important for marketing to play its part.

Our call is to those planning to explore wider sustainable marketing and responsible consumption aspects and to confront how and whether ‘marketing orthodoxies’ fit within an evolving and environmentally challenged socio-mercantile context. This topic can be pursued from within diverse marketing fields, such as consumer behaviour and experience, branding and brand identity, political branding, marketer behaviour and marketing ethics, services research, value co-creation, social marketing, or tourism and hospitality experiences.

We would be especially pleased to receive proposals of an interdisciplinary nature that combine aspects of marketing with, for example, technology/AI, sociology, psychology or pedagogy. We invite candidates from a wide range of methodological backgrounds. One possible route is for the selected candidate to apply data-driven tools such as big data analytics, sentiment analysis and data analytics, and will use social media platforms databases (e.g, Twitter, Facebook) to understand better how to encourage sustainable thought and behaviour effectively in the understudied areas of social media and cross-cultural research.

Another possible route is for the successful candidate to employ qualitative research, ethnography and/or netnography with special attention to the paucity of longitudinal and/or comparative research in marketing and consumer studies. Academically, the project will synthesise findings to deliver theoretical and methodological innovations, and to advance the area of Sustainable Marketing and Responsible Consumption. When concluded, this wider project will be able to make policy recommendations to inform development and management of marketing practices in responsible and sustainable ways.

Preventing Gender-based Violence (GBV) in the Workplace

Centre: Responsible and Sustainable Business Lab

The depth and extent of the problems around gender-based violence (GBV) in society are often perceived as private. As such, corporates are unprepared to address the GBV-related challenges that manifest in the workplace, such as sexual harassment, bullying (both in-person and cyber-bullying) and the perpetuation of toxic masculinities at work. The ethical risks around the harmful gender norms pertain to internal organisational dynamics and how organisations manage their value chain.

Therefore, research is needed on how GBV can be prevented through HR policies, training, and sensitization, as well as in and through product design, supplier engagement, marketing, and customer care. Further, coded biases in black-box algorithms that underpin digital platforms call to question how data generated in digital spaces may perpetuate and even fuel GBV.

The manifestation of the problem in digitalised workplaces and digital products and services raises tricky ethical dilemmas around the balance between autonomy and care. Corporate service providers need to have clear policies on how they will deal with online abuse but maintain freedom of expression at the same time. International Labour Organisation’s (ILO) Convention No. 190 (ILO-C190), which calls for eliminating violence and harassment in the world of work, recognises cyberbullying and violence enabled by digital technologies but has not been ratified globally.

In this doctoral study, the ideal candidate will be able to assess the various risks associated with GBV in the workplace (physical & digital spaces), research its multiple manifestations, and design corporate GBV programmes with impact.

International Business Research – Trade-Offs and New Realities in Decision-making of People, Firms and Countries

Centre: International Business Strategy and Decisions

This doctoral research gathers insights into how international business theories and practices are relevant for the challenges of the future such as the trade-offs regarding climate change and international production systems. A special focus is the interaction between actors from different analytical levels such as firms, industries, countries and societal groups. The research will explore how the architecture of international business decisions deals with dilemmas from an economic, societal, and psychological angle dependent on the background. It will impact on organisational and decision-making structures, cooperation, and competition. Recent developments from Covid-19, climate change urgency and the digital transformations are influencing international business strategies and decisions and can be considered in the proposal. Thus, using a variety of theories and methods of qualitative and quantitative research this project investigates trans-national differences. What research questions can be identified regarding the new realities in international business research?

We welcome students with excellent undergraduate and postgraduate degrees of an international business, management science, environmental sciences, economics, psychological and/or sociological background. Research students ready to work in sustainability and environmental policy using case studies, survey analysis and modelling are welcome to apply.

Accounting and Governance, Digital Finance and Investment, and Learning, Teaching and Pedagogy

Centre: Accounting and Finance Research Group

The Accounting and Finance Research Group undertakes both empirical and theoretical research around three themes including Accounting and Governance, Digital Finance and Investment, and Learning, Teaching and Pedagogy. Specifically, Accounting and Governance aims to promote interdisciplinary research and bring researchers and practitioners with shared interests together in conducting research relating to financial reporting, public sector finance and corporate governance. Digital Finance and Investment stream aims to produce research to tackle problems of the future with research interests covering from sustainable and responsible finance and investment to cryptocurrency. Learning, Teaching and Pedagogy aims to enable research that generates innovations and impactful improvements in teaching, learning, and student experience in an international higher education context.

You have opportunity to join our regular research seminar series that not only provides the opportunity for new researchers and senior colleagues to present their ideas, but also display interdisciplinary research and knowledge sharing with other departments such as Management or Economics. We also organise ad-hoc external guest speakers’ events that strengthen the collaborative ties of our research group with other universities. We look for applicants who have clear ambition to conduct leading edge research and be highly motivated to study at one of the best business schools.