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Run by Faculty of Social Sciences and Law
Awards available PhD
Programme length Four years full-time;
seven years part-time
Location of programme Clifton campus
Part-time study available Yes
Start date Most students will start in October 2021, however other dates can be considered.

Programme overview

Research is central to the activities of the Department of Management at the University of Bristol. The department comprises a group of academic staff with a variety of interests and a focus on research that has practical relevance. The results of the most recent UK-wide research assessment, REF 2014, rated 78 per cent of the research activity in business and management as 'world leading' or 'internationally excellent'.

The department encourages interdisciplinary research, drawing on a range of theories and methodologies. We welcome students from a variety of backgrounds and experiences. We encourage applications from strong candidates from disciplines outside the social sciences, management and business studies who wish to convert, and from candidates with organisational or commercial experience.

Candidates entering the PhD programme are normally required to take 60 credit points of taught units in their first year. Students are also encouraged to undertake further training in agreement with their supervisor for the duration of their studies.

Fees for 2021/22

We charge an annual tuition fee. Fees for 2021/22 are as follows:

UK: full-time
UK: part-time
Overseas (including EU): full-time
Channel Islands/Isle of Man: full-time

Fees are subject to an annual review. For programmes that last longer than one year, please budget for up to a five per cent increase in fees each year. Find out more about tuition fees.

Alumni scholarship

University of Bristol students and graduates can benefit from a ten per cent reduction in tuition fees for postgraduate study. Check your eligibility for an alumni scholarship.

Funding for 2021/22

The Faculty of Social Sciences and Law has an allocation of 1+3 and +3 ESRC scholarships. Applicants may also be interested in applying for funding from the University of Bristol scholarship fund or alumni PhD scholarship fund.

Further information on funding for prospective UK, EU and international postgraduate students.

Entry requirements

An upper second-class or first-class honours degree in a related subject (or equivalent) and a merit or equivalent master's qualification in a related subject.

See international equivalent qualifications on the International Office website.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you need to meet this profile level:
Profile B
Further information about English language requirements and profile levels.

Admissions statement

Read the programme admissions statement for important information on entry requirements, the application process and supporting documents required.

Admissions statement

Research groups

Action Research and Critical Inquiry in Organisation (ARCIO Research Centre)

ARCIO brings together a number of strands of research and teaching in the Department of Management at the University of Bristol and beyond. The centre is committed to research in participative and capacity-building ways in organisations and communities. We are interested in projects that focus on sustainability, social justice, gender and inclusivity. It is also committed to using arts-based, narrative and feminist methods in its research and scholarship, and to working with groups and organisations who are interested in taking a critical stand on research and development projects. The centre’s activities include research, scholarship and practice around the areas mentioned above.

For details of staff working in this research group, please visit the Department of Management website.

Marketing and Strategy

The Marketing and Strategy group is very new in the department with plans for significant growth in coming years. Currently, research is interdisciplinary and focuses on strategy, values and identity, with ideas from psychology and organisation studies. Other work looks at marketing in the context of national politics and service delivery from an operations perspective. The group is committed to research that integrates diverse perspectives, especially from the social sciences.

For details of staff working in this research group, please visit the Department of Management website.

Organisation Studies/HRM

The Organisation Studies and Human Resource Management group is the most established in the department and combines staff interests from a variety of social sciences perspectives (e.g. sociology, labour economics, politics and feminism). Its research seeks to challenge mainstream assumptions and to bring society and globalisation into an understanding of organisations and employment. Thus, interests cover power, identity, materiality and institutional and organisational change, as well as different groups engaging with work organisations such as the professions, unions and other employee groups. The group contributes to the University's ESRC South West Doctoral Training Partnership and its work engages with local communities and debates about the role of experts and occupational groups.

For details of staff working in this research group, please visit the Department of Management website.

Operations/Management Science

The Operations/Management Science group carries out research into supply chain management, sustainability and resilience, healthcare operations, big data analytics, social media research and low carbon manufacturing. The group is committed to using empirical methods in operations management research and applied operational research methods in tackling real-world problems that have high economic, societal and environmental impacts, attracting funding from NERC, ESRC, the Royal Society, the Newton Fund, and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC).

For details of staff working in this research group, please visit the Department of Management website.

Global Political Economy and International Business Management

The Global Political Economy and International Business Management group brings together staff interested in a wide range of questions that span disciplines and fields, such as economic sociology, economic geography, global studies, migration and political economy of globalisation.

Members are engaged in researching a range of problems, including: changes in labour and employment, global commodity chains and transnational corporations, the rise of global managerialism, the financialisation of management, and the transformation of professions and global professional service firms.

The group aims to address analytically the transformations brought about by the globalisation of economy and management and, through their work, to underscore the need for the current disciplinary and interdisciplinary boundaries in the social sciences to be transcended. The group contributes to the University's ESRC South West Doctoral Training Partnership interdisciplinary pathway in Global Political Economy.

For details of staff working in this research group, please visit the Department of Management website.


Previous graduates have gone on to careers in academia as well as to a variety of employers across the world such as: Honda, Bank of China Hong Kong, and Chinese Academy of Science. Another popular route for graduates is to pursue post-doctoral research, consultancy or enter policy-based institutions.

Staff profiles

How to apply
Application deadline:

We welcome applications at any time of year; early application is advised.

Open days and visits

Register for our virtual open week.

Get in touch

Graduate Studies PGR Team Phone: +44 (0) 117 394 1518 Email:

School website: School of Management

International students

Find out more about becoming a student at Bristol, applying for a visa and the support we offer to international students.

Bristol Doctoral College

The Bristol Doctoral College facilitates and supports doctoral training and researcher development across the University.

REF 2014 results

  • Business and Management Studies:
  • 24% of research is world-leading (4*)
  • 54% of research is internationally excellent (3*)
  • 22% of research is recognised internationally (2*)
  • 0% of research is recognised nationally (1*)

Results are from the most recent UK-wide assessment of research quality, conducted by HEFCE. More about REF 2014 results.


Important disclaimer information about our programmes.

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