Supply Chain Management PhD Programs

There are several PhD in Supply Chain Management degree programs that are available to students through business schools. Here we discuss the degree, its coursework and unique learning opportunities in detail.

Generally offered as a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Business Administration with an emphasis or concentration in supply chain management, these degree programs usually require a dissertation and teaching responsibilities. Students may also be required to participate in summer research projects and/or presentations and conferences. Learn more about the degree program and requirements below.

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Information for Doctoral Degree Programs in Supply Chain Management

Coursework for doctoral programs in supply chain management commonly consists of core courses in the major, a minor or supporting area and research methods. Coursework usually prepares students for their comprehensive exams, typically allows students to pick and choose courses for flexibility and specialization and may include topics like the ones discussed here in detail.


Students in these doctoral programs usually take one or more courses in econometrics that focus on the math and analysis skills used in economics. These courses cover statistical methods, hypothesis testing and current econometric methods. Sometimes these courses may be broken into two or more sections to focus on specific topics, such as a course in economic models and regression analysis and another in estimation techniques for complex models.

Stochastic Methods

Courses that cover stochastic methods look at analysis methods involving uncertainty and randomness and may focus on the math perspective or how these methods apply to supply chain management. Courses examining math discuss probability theory and other concepts specific to stochastic methods, like renewal theory and stationary processes. Other courses may examine how uncertainty affects economic models and talk about topics like competition and contract design.


Supply chain management programs often include a course that focuses on the modeling techniques specific to supply chain management. Sometimes, these courses are offered in a research seminar format and can only be taken in a later phase of the doctoral program. Typically, these courses examine the analytical modeling and algorithms that are used to identify, analyze and solve a range of problems in the field.

Multivariate Analysis

Courses in multivariate analysis are statistics-based courses that train students how to analyze situations with a range of variables. Some programs may include an introduction course and an advanced course in the subject. Some of the specific topics these courses may cover include multivariate normal distributions, canonical correlations, classification and discriminant analysis.

Topics in Supply Chain Management

Courses that examine various topics in supply chain management are typically required for the degree, but also offer the most diversity for students. Some of these courses are offered as research seminars, while others may be lecture-based courses that include presentations, case studies and/or readings in the field. Usually, the goal of these courses is to introduce students to research and current literature in supply chain management and may discuss current problems, theories and/or other fundamentals in the field.

Common Entrance Requirements

Some PhD in Supply Chain Management programs may require applicants to hold a master's degree, while other programs may accept students with only a bachelor's degree. These degree programs are usually selective and may require students to submit GMAT scores of at least 600 (some programs may also accept the GRE). A few programs may want students to have prior coursework in areas like differential and integral calculus. Fairly standard application materials for these programs include transcripts, letters of recommendation, a personal statement and resume or CV. Some of these programs may ask for additional writing samples and most of these programs also have an interview process.

PhD programs in supply chain management usually require a dissertation and coursework that is heavy in mathematics, statistics and economics. Students in these programs may have teaching responsibilities and typically graduate with a PhD in Business Administration.

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