- Richard Boland, PhD, on the Doctor of Management Program at Weatherhead School of Management
- Nick Berente, PhD, on the Doctor of Management Program at Weatherhead School of Management
- Bo Carlsson, PhD, on the Doctor of Management Program at Weatherhead School of Management
- Jeff Ferguson on the Doctor of Management Program at Weatherhead School of Management
- Beth Fitz Gibbon on the Doctor of Management Program at Weatherhead School of Management
- Ron Fountain on the Doctor of Management Program at Weatherhead School of Management
- Shyam Giridharadas on the Doctor of Management Program at Weatherhead School of Management
- Ann Kowal Smith on the Doctor of Management Program at Weatherhead School of Management
- Kalle Lyytinen, PhD, on the Doctor of Management Program at Weatherhead School of Management
- Hugh Rashid on the Doctor of Management Program at Weatherhead School of Management
- Jackie Stavros on the Doctor of Management Program at Weatherhead School of Management
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Business leadership is increasingly required to integrate multiple sources of knowledge, understand the perceptions of diverse parties and put human values into action. Executives are challenged to create social, intellectual and economic value for their organizations and for society at large based on rigorous and sound evidence. Recognizing these challenges, the Weatherhead School of Management offers two doctorate degrees in management for working professionals: the Doctor of Management (DM) and the Designing Sustainable Systems track in the PhD in management.
The DM is a three-year lockstep program with an option to pursue the Designing Sustainable Systems track in the PhD in management. DM students’ research projects are evaluated by a faculty review committee over the course of the program at critical research milestones.
Doctor of Management (DM)
- Identify problem of practice
- Understand & synthesize relevant literature
- Complete conceptual paper
- Initiate qualitative research project
- Complete qualitative research paper
- Develop theoretical model
- Initiate quantitative research project
- Complete quantitative research paper
- Complete dissertation composed of qualitative and quantitative research projects
- Integrate research projects into dissertation
PhD in Management, Sustainable Systems
- Directed independent research
- Attend Research Workshops
- Comprehensive exam
- Proposal Defense
- Dissertation Defense
Is This Program Right for Me?
The purpose of the DM program is to develop thought leaders for the advancement of business and society. A Weatherhead DM student combines a disciplined approach to scholarship with a focus on compelling problems of practice.
Candidates conduct several rigorous studies during the program that introduce them to the theories, practices and techniques of evidence-based management. The DM experience is intended to equip graduates with the requisite skills to apply evidence-based management in their organizations, to apply research to practice, to engage and prepare for self-directed lifelong learning in management research, to continue research dissemination, and to cultivate a broad profile for scholarly teaching. DM students also may apply to the Designing Sustainable Systems track in the PhD in management program, thereby extending their coursework an additional year. This fourth year is dedicated to independent doctoral studies and research workshops that permit students to meet the requirements of a PhD in management offered by the School of Graduate Studies. During both the DM and PhD programs students are required to prepare and submit their research papers to appropriate high-quality academic conferences for review and presentation. A core goal for both programs is for students to make original intellectual contributions while enrolled in the programs.
Ask yourself the following questions:
- Am I intellectually curious?
- Do I enjoy reading and expressing my own ideas in writing?
- Do I get satisfaction from working with concepts and seeing patterns and relationships between ideas?
- Do I believe that important organizational and social issues can be addressed through the development of knowledge?
- Am I receptive to learning through systematic inquiry, both qualitative and quantitative?
- Do I have the motivation to conduct solid research and contribute to applied knowledge?
- Can I contribute to a diverse community seeking to build concepts about how the world works?
- Do I have the drive and time to complete a rigorous, three-year doctoral degree?
What is the value of participating in a DM program
We are often asked what is the value of the DM program? What is the ROI on my investment? Though this cannot be estimated exactly but only in rare cases we will offer below several benefits as reported our current students and alumni. Most of our alumni indicate that their study in the DM program has materially and directly impacted the way they work and think. Moreover, their ongoing research often informs their practice immediately. The research they do in the program often has generated findings that they can use in their workplace to guide action. Many times it has resulted in IP that has been patented or trademarked or lead to new and different consulting engagements. Moreover, learning how to do research enables students to engage in new research in the workplace and expand it. We provide below testimonials that have been collected over the years from students about the impact of the program on their work, career and management practices.
Learning from the diversity and quality of the cohort
The jewels and treasures that the program attracts—everyone was so impressive.
I feel privileged to know the people I worked with.
I particularly enjoyed the diversity of the people in the program—who they are, where
What makes the Case program what it is, is the quality of the cohort. When I was first
introduced, I was amazed at the quality of the persons that were there.
Learning with and from Cohort
The cohort was some of the smartest people I've ever been around… we were banding
together to ask questions that I've never thought of before.
What was really excellent was the variety of the people in the program, and the professors
allowed for interaction among the folks in the class. I learned how others dealt with
The high point is the quality of the faculty and the peer group—interesting people,
hard-working, smart…. I believe I learned as much or more from the peer group as I
did from the profs….
My thinking expanded well beyond education as a result of the people I went through
the program with. No question that that changed my view.
Care about the student learning
Another great thing was that everyone was interested in my success. All of the extra
effort pushing me along was very valuable.
The instructors and teachers were committed and excited. I like the commitment… all
of the instructors did a super job and the administrators were always available. They
were all there to help you get through the program.
Teaching at the professor level was excellent.
Gaining Broader Perspective
The most valuable thing was the expanded horizons, the faculty teaching the non-research
components were adept at teaching views of the world that were completely novel.
It's just about the idea of systems—interdependencies interrelationships unintended
consequences—it makes me pay attention so much more… if you hear or read something
it is impossible not to think larger, think big. What a gift!
The DM program broadened me to think outside the traditional way that a businessperson
may think about issues.
The DM program changed the way I think. It opened me up to the macroshifts, to step
back and understand the impact of globalization. That's just a different level of
It impacted me relative to the opportunities that came my way… the ability to look
at things in a broader, more sweeping way.
Learning from Alternative Perspectives
It changes the way you view the world. It is a lot more than just getting skills….
The most important thing you learn is how to reframe how you view problems.
[The program] affected my thinking dramatically. I can't remember what I used to be
like. I'm aware every day facing different situations where I reflect on things learned
from the program.
I think I look at things a lot different than I've done before. More long-term, a
little more analytical, less firefighting… it seems to be working very successfully.
I view the world differently now, I think about it differently, I process input differently,
I speak about it differently, I write about it differently.
I feel like I'm a profoundly different thinker … I think about things in a much more
analytical way… my thinking on everyday topics is on a more global level.
There's a lot more factors I'd like to consider… much more sensitive to the tensions
within organizations and the balance that managers would like to achieve
The DM really does it enables us to look at a things in a deeper way
Since DM, I'm more interested in reading books that are a bit more theoretical and
a bit more on a higher plane—DM had a huge impact on me in that respect.
Valuing Disciplined Thinking
The most valuable tool is the tool of observation and deferred judgment until you
observe more deeply. I don't just jump to conclusions … before I went, I think I would
jump to conclusions faster. It taught me how to stop, think, look around an d ask
I would hope that I was a better thinker… I got better at guarding against overconfidence…
I added a degree of maturity.
The methods that I learned have been helpful. My approach to things is much more thoughtful
than in the past. One of the big problems that business has in general is that our
concepts are very weak, we don't think conceptually in a business context… theories
of collective action, I use that stuff! What is the commons? What are the externalities?
… It has changed my approach to lots of things.
It enabled me to bring a different level of composure to that part of my life, and
on a professional level it helped me look at issues in a way … an evidence-based approach.
…a more scientific approach to these things, regardless of whether on the business
or academic side
There's no doubt the program affected my thinking—I had no formal skillset in quantitative
or qualitative methods—it made me a broader more disciplined thinking … it really
makes you think to a different level
It has allowed me to think a little bit differently—professionals tend to read something
and make very blanket statements… I try to question my assumptions… my statements
have been more guarded and well-thought out.
Advancing Analytical Skills
It made a fundamental change on my way of thinking—the applied research; the way you
look at data; the way you analyze data is different. Corporations make decisions
based on erroneous or inadequate or incomplete data. They do so because they don't
have the depth of analytical thinking. They give anecdotal data a cursory look and
It certainly helped me develop my thinking and problem solving skills.
The quantitative and qualitative skills and tools that we learn are invaluable to
problem solving in a rapidly changing global economy.
It made my thinking skills, analysis skills and synthesis skill much more developed.
It gave me perspective.
Creating Confidence based on Evidence and Logic
My sense of confidence in approaching a new opportunity was bolstered by my experience
This experience of the DM program… being a lot more comfortable with designing things
and leading change.
I now have this self confidence and a very clear way of moving forward.
It certainly gave me confidence.
Creating a new Research Informed Practice
My research directly informed my thinking. There are things that I learned about building
trust that I employ everyday… I'm living the research that I conducted there…. I used
all the things I learned in my research and as a result we moved into this sphere
[developed a new program] … in about 7 months.
As a result of my analysis we actually revised company policy and revised the survey
and shortened the number of questions and tightened the relationship of those questions…
It is the first leading indicator ever created in our industry and it is being published
as a best practice… The result of my study was that in 36 months I was able to implement
in real-time in our business and affect results immediately.
My research topic was sales management which I practice every single day with sales
teams. What I did is very close to what I could use.
Still making presentation around the world on my research.
The value of the actual research I did has proven itself again and again … I have
been able to anticipate trends… I think I have a comprehensive understanding.
Expanding Informed Practice
I would have never thought to ask that question. I found myself asking questions because I wanted to understand the process along
Training at Case helped more in the area of strategic thinking—aligning the execution
of a solution with the expectation of the solution. The DM program helped me to formulate
in my mind approaches…
The ability to think analytically and critically in just about any management situation
I've ever encountered … I've applied that toolset over and over again.
Benefit to Participants
Our DM offers experienced executives unparalleled benefits:
- An understanding of managing organizations in the context of broad issues, such as culture and politics, technology and social system design and institutional approaches to problem solving
- A transdisciplinary, integrative, global perspective on critical organizational and social issues
- A unique approach to intellectual inquiry emphasizing the integration of theory and practice
- The opportunity to define and conduct issue-oriented research allowing participants to customize their studies and to contribute to applied management knowledge
- Intellectual development and personal growth as an individual, as an executive and as a contributor to the scholarly community and to society
- A prestigious doctoral degree in management achieved through a rigorous, structured and comprehensive educational experience for the working professional
Value to Organizations
To compete effectively in today’s complex world, organizations require leaders who:
- Engage in thinking and analysis based upon a global perspective and understanding of viewpoints held by diverse constituencies
- Possess heightened issue identification and resolution skills to be applied in business management practice
- Understand interdependencies between organizations and the societies in which they function
- Maintain an active network of peers within and outside of an organization
- Commit to the principles of lifelong learning and personal development in order to enhance their value to an organization
Weatherhead’s unique practitioner-scholar orientation will allow you to:
- Conduct studies and projects on issues, problems and opportunities of significance to your organization
- Test, evaluate and develop a more sophisticated understanding and assumptions about global trends that will affect your organization and community
- Gain perspective on the worldwide challenges and opportunities that will impact the plans, strategies and policies guiding your organization in the long term
Weatherhead DM Blog
Hear from current DM students, alumni, and faculty about recent findings and applied research.