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Announcing New Business PhD Wiki
My name is Megan Gorges and I'm an incoming PhD student in Organizational Behavior at Harvard Business School. I'm excited to announce a new wiki intended to provide guidance for those applying to PhD programs in business schools: businessphdwiki.com
This wiki was developed in collaboration with Abhishek Nagaraj (Assistant Professor at Berkeley Haas) and Stephen Turban (also an incoming PhD student in OB at HBS). We created this to give open access to the "insider" information we gathered through our own journeys, and to help level the playing field for all aspiring business school academics.
The wiki covers a host of topics including what it means to pursue a career in business academia, tactical guidance on the application process (including example essays and CVs from successful applicants), and the rise of pre-doctoral research positions.
This is set up as a wiki (editable by anyone!) precisely because it is missing a lot of information, so if you are already in a PhD program or are further along in your academic career, please edit to share your own wisdom! Specifically, it would be great to incorporate perspectives from those outside OB (marketing, finance, etc.) and to add more information on how to achieve success during the PhD and beyond.
Please feel free to share the wiki with anyone else who might find it useful!
That's a really great project. I never edited a wiki, so I don't really know how to do that.
One information that is missing is the TOEFL / IELTS in the application process for foreign students.
And certainly there are recommendations and information that are very specific. For example, the number of applicants accepted in Finance and Marketing are very different. I'm in Marketing, and things are quite different depending on the track you're applying to (usually, Quantitative Marketing or Consumer Behavior). So, I think the wiki should include sections that are more specific.
Thank you for pointing this out! It would be great to have those topics on the wiki.
Making an account and editing the wiki is super simple and I encourage you to do so! Just click on the plus symbol at the top of the wiki home page, register, and then you can edit any page you want by clicking on "Edit this page" on the lefthand side.
First off, thanks so much for creating this amazing resource! I definitely hope to contribute in the future (after this upcoming application cycle when I actually apply). One area in which I was hoping to gain insight was the degree to which co-authoring papers, being published, presenting at academic conferences, etc. matters. I noticed that most, if not all, of the CVs in the google drive had one or more of these traits present--are applicants who have these features significantly stronger than those with just research assistant experience? Thanks!
You are welcome! Yes, please do contribute in the future!
To answer your question, I think being involved in research in the way that a doctoral student would be - as a co-author who has intellectual ownership over the project - is very helpful for convincing admissions committees that you are prepared for success in a PhD program and that you truly understand what research entails (including how long it really takes and how often it doesn't work out how you want it to).
I don't think you need to get published before applying - that seems like a ridiculously high bar and I think I only knew 1-2 people who applied with a publication.
I do think it's helpful to have at least one project you are working on where you are a prospective author (if it were to get published in the future), but the particularly important piece of that is having some research work you can discuss in depth in your essays and/or CV, and in your interviews.