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Next Intake : September 2022
Entry requirements: master's level diploma
Duration : 3 years
Languages : English
Campus : Rennes

The Rennes School of Business PhD programme integrates students into a rich and varied academic environment over 3 years, exposing them to top level research in their chosen discipline. The programme uses a mix of specialised teaching and research activities to enable students to acquire specialist knowledge in their domain, preparing them for an outstanding career in their domain.   


The mission of the PhD programme is to enable participants to develop the necessary research and analytical skills to bring a valuable contribution to their area of academic expertise. Over the three years of the programme, participants are prepared for international, research-driven academic careers or research positions in multinational companies, organisations or institutions.

5 reasons to join the programme:

  • Join an animated and varied research community of PhD, post-doctoral students and academic researchers who regularly publish in top peer-reviewed academic journals.
  • Join our international research networks with partner universities around the world.
  • Become a specialist in your domain and achieve excellence in one of our 5 research areas:

Artificial Intelligent-Driven Business
Green, Digital and Demand-driven Supply Chain Management
Rethinking Tomorrow’s Organisation
Financial & Corporate Outcomes

  • Benefit from seminars and workshops delivered by world-class academics.
  • Join a triple-accredited business school (EQUIS, AACSB, AMBA) ranked among the Top 10 in France for international attractiveness and the quality of its Faculty.


The PhD is a three-year, full-time programme which includes three taught courses covering advanced research skills and methods, and one in the specialist discipline of your PhD. You also attend workshops and seminars organised regularly by one of the five Research Centres to which you are attached, and by the Centre for Unframed Thinking (CUT). The main learning experience comes from carrying out your own research with the collaboration and support of your supervisors, giving you the opportunity to specialise in your chosen area of expertise.

You will participate in various research and teaching activities such as attending national and international academic or practitioner conferences to prepare you for writing and publishing in academic journals and to become familiar with cutting-edge research on topics which can have a real impact on society. All PhD students present their work at least once a year in a workshop with faculty attendees at Rennes SB to foster inter-disciplinary knowledge and PhD community participation. We encourage visits or stays at partner universities and time spent teaching undergraduate courses and tutorials to prepare for your future careers.

All students benefit from a supervisory team including a minimum of one Rennes SB faculty member and one external supervisor from a partner university. Currently, we have PhD students who are being co-supervised by IMT-Atlantique, INRAe, University College Dublin, The University of Strasbourg, and Linköping University. We believe that our PhD students are better prepared for an international career by being exposed to the research expertise and expectations of two different institutions.


To be eligible you must have obtained merit or distinction in your Master’s level degree in Business, Management or a related discipline (e.g. economics, law) from a reputed university or higher education institution. Applicants from other academic backgrounds must provide written justification for how their previous work or experience has prepared them to join one of the research centres’ specialised research orientations.

English proficiency (one of the following):

  • TOEFL > 80
  • TOEIC > 60
  • IELTS > 6.5
  •  Native Language
  • Previous studies taught in English (minimum 3 years)

Evidence of ability to support yourself financially for 3 years for self-funded applicants.


Candidates should complete the application form provided below (“Apply Here” button) and return it with all the required documents listed at the end of the application form to before 1 July 2022. The subject line of the e-mail should be “Name Surname – PhD application”.

Before starting we remind you that you will need to provide a short research proposal linked to one of the Research Centre orientations, preferably with a proposed Rennes SB supervisor.
Please explore our Research Centres sites below and the Faculty profiles to ensure that your research area fits with Rennes SB’s orientations.

The selection procedure of candidates is as follows:

  • A first selection by the recruitment panel: the PhD director, director of the Research Centre and proposed supervisor (if provided) based on your application portfolio.
  • An e-mail sent to candidates either informing them that their application is not retained or inviting them for an online interview with the panel named above.
  • Confirmation of acceptance or non-acceptance after validation by the Research Impact Committee held monthly.
  • For applications for the Rennes SB scholarships, we will provide final confirmation by 1 July 2022. Self-funded/individual scholarship holders may apply after this date.

Project Calls

Take a look at some specific project calls for September 2022:

Project 1. Financial consequences of irresponsible marketing practices: A multi-country study

Irresponsible/deviant marketing practices such as deceptive advertising, and misleading product claims are prevalent across industries. This project will explore the financial consequences of such deviant marketing practices. That is, how do such corporate practices impact a firm’s profitability/cash flow/risk, etc. Furthermore, this project will endeavour to identify a set of firm-, industry, and country-level contingencies. By its very nature, this is a transdisciplinary research project, both theoretically and methodologically. This study will require the utilisation of germane theories from Marketing, Strategic management, and Finance. Methodologically, archival data from multiple sources will be collected and analysed using appropriate econometric modeling.
For more information, please send an email to

Project 2. Developments and challenges of the cryptocurrency market

Cryptocurrencies, are a financial asset class that have attracted massive attention from the public and academia since their inception. The digital currency research originated from an anonymous and untraceable electronic currency system developed by Chaum (1983). Bitcoin, as the first successful experiment, is considered as one of the most interesting recent developments in modern monetary economies. Up to date, the debate surrounding the merits and pitfalls of cryptocurrencies remain unabated.
In this project we analyse recent developments of the cryptocurrency market and its main counterparts, i.e., currencies, DeFi, stablecoins, smart contract platforms, and decentralised and centralised exchanges. The markets are studied from the point of view of their efficiency, liquidity, volatility, hedging characteristics, arbitrage possibilities, etc. that can be used in building effective investment strategies.
For more information, please send an email to


Registration and Administrative fees: €1500 per year.
€500 a year for students with Rennes SB scholarship.



Rennes SB offers two scholarships of 20 400€ net per year to excellent students. Students may also apply for an external 3-year scholarship from a company, governmental or academic institution. Examples of information on national or international PhD funding bodies can be found here:

National and international scholarships:
Find your country on France Campus: 
The French Embassy in your country may also provide grants.

Publications & press

PhD student academic publications

Recent academic publications co-authored by Rennes SB PhD students :

  • Agarwal, S., & Muckley, C. (2022) Law enforcement spillover effects in the financial sector. European Financial 
  • Bazih, J.H., Vanwalleghem, D. (2021) Deriving value or risk? Determinants and the impact of emerging market banks’ derivative usage. Research in International Business and Finance, Volume 56, Issue 1, 101379
  • Benitez, J., Ruiz, L., Castillo, A., & Llorens, J. (2020). How corporate social responsibility activities influence employer reputation: The role of social media capability. Decision Support Systems, 129, 113223.
  • Braojos, J., Benitez, J., Llorens, J., & Ruiz, L. (2020). Impact of IT integration on the firm’s knowledge absorption and desorption. Information & Management, 57(7), 103290
  • Chedrawi, C., & Atallah, Y. (2021). Artificial intelligence in the defense sector: an RBV and isomorphism perspectives to the case of the Lebanese Armed Forces. Journal of Asia Business Studies.
  • Chen, Y., Bredin, D., Potì, V., & Matkovskyy, R. (2021). COVID risk narratives: a computational linguistic approach to the econometric identification of narrative risk during a pandemic. Digital Finance, 1-45.
  • Chen, M., Chakraborty, S., Xiong, J., Scaringella, L., & Descubes, I. (2021). Business model renewal and environment changes: Insights of Chinese textile industry. Strategic Change, 30(6), 573-580.
  • Gao, S., Bagnarosa, G., Dowling, M. Matkovskyy, R. & Tawil, D. (2022) Price transmission in European fish markets. Applied Economics, 54(19), 2194-2213
  • Huertas-Valdivia, I., Gallego-Burín, A. R., Castillo, A., & Ruiz, L. (2021). Why don’t high-performance work systems always achieve superior service in hospitality? The key is servant leadership. Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Management, 49, 152-163.
  • Jabbouri, R., Schneckenberg, D. & Truong, Y. (2022) From Policy-Practice to Means-Ends Decoupling in Organisations: A Systematic Review and Paths for Future Research. Management International, 26(1),123-148.
  • Jabbouri, R., Schneckenberg, D., Truong, Y. & Palmer, M. (2019) Institutional Means-ends Decoupling Work in Industrial R&D Project Implementation. Industrial Marketing Management, 80, 296-311.
  • Joshi, A., Benitez, J., Huygh, T., Ruiz, L. & De Haes, S. (2022) Impact of IT governance process capability on business performance: Theory and empirical evidence, Decision Support Systems, 153, 113668.
  • Kandil, N., Battaïa, O., & Hammami, R. (2020) Globalisation vs. Slowbalisation: A literature review of analytical models for sourcing decisions in Supply Chain Management. Annual Reviews in Control, 49, 277-287.
  • Longondjo E.C., & Roloff, J. (2020) Protecting environment or people? Pitfalls and merits of informal labor in the Congolese recycling industry. Journal of Business Ethics, 161(4), 815–834.
  • Öncü Hazır, Maher A. N. Agi & Jérémy Guérin (2020) A fast and effective heuristic for smoothing workloads on assembly lines: algorithm design and experimental analysis. Computers and Operations Research, 115, 104857.
  • Palusuk, N., Koles, B., Hasan, R. (2019) All you need is brand love: a critical review of comprehensive conceptual framework for brand love. Journal of Marketing Management, 35, (1-2), 97-129.
  • Razm, S., Brahimi, N., Dolgui, A., & Hammami, R. (2021, September). Designing Bioenergy Supply Chains Under Social Constraints. In IFIP International Conference on Advances in Production Management Systems (pp. 387-396). Springer, Cham.
  • Saad, G., Bouraoui, T. (2019) Currency returns during democratic transition: Evidence from Tunisia. Managerial Finance, 45, (7), 2019 pp. 966-979.
  • Wu, X., Xiong, J., Li, H., Wu, H. (2019) The myth of retail pricing policy for developing organic vegetable markets. Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, 51, 8-13.
  • Xu, L., Yan, J., Xiong, J. (2019) Network Characteristics and Organizational Innovation Capability: A Study of the Inter-organizational Collaboration Network of New Drug Development in Shanghai China. Strategic Change, Vol. 28, Issue 6, pp. 499-506.
  • Yan J, Xu L, Farajallah M, Zhao S & Xiong J., (2020) Overview of environmental management in an emerging market. Strategic Change. 2020, Volume 29, Issue 5, pp.553–560.
  • Zhao, S., Kim, S. Y., Wu, H., Yan, J., & Xiong, J. (2019). Closing the gap: the Chinese electric vehicle industry owns the road. Journal of Business Strategy.
  • Zhao, S., Xiong, J., Kim, S.-Y., Xu, L. and Yan, J. (2021) When bike-sharing crashed in China: a bumpy ride. Journal of Business Strategy, Vol. 42 No. 5, pp. 295-303

“So, are you convinced?”
Do you have any questions about whether you are eligible to apply? Contact your advisor
Dr Sarah Hudson