Ph.D. in Management

Multi-faceted application and theory for solving today’s business-related problems.

The Lally School offers a Doctor of Philosophy program in Management. The program develops scholars highly skilled in conducting research and teaching. Within each business discipline theoretical underpinnings and applications are explored with systematic and quantitative techniques. Ph.D. students learn from faculty members who advance business theory and practice through economics, behavioral sciences, and analytical methods and research. Faculty research covers a wide-variety of areas including corporate finance, banking, strategic management, joint ventures, capital markets, and organizational behavior.

Curriculum & Courses

The Lally Ph.D. program can be completed in 90 credits and usually takes a minimum of three years to complete. A student with a master's in management or MBA from an AACSB-accredited institution within seven years of applying to the doctoral program, and who is able to take courses in the summer, can consider the three-year program. Additional courses, particularly background or breadth courses are required of students who enter without a master’s of management.

Our Students

Garo Agopian

  • Hometown/Country: Beirut, Lebanon
  • Area of Research/Interest: Consumer Behavior, Social Media, Digital Marketing, Perception, the Psychology of Technology
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: Haigazian University, Beirut, Lebanon
  • Undergraduate Major: Advertising and Communication Media
  • Biography: Garo Agopian is a Ph.D. candidate in marketing at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute’s Lally School of Management. His research interests revolve around consumer behavior and digital marketing, with an emphasis on presentation and perception of source characteristics, such as expertise and influence. His dissertation explores how market mavens present their expertise on social media. He has also been involved in a number of projects that apply empirical research methods to the research areas of entertainment marketing (movies in particular), innovation, services, and product design. His research is published in the Journal of Services Marketing and was presented at PDMA and EIRASS. Moreover, he has a strong teaching record, having taught various sessions on digital marketing, Twitter, consumer behavior, and organizational buyer behavior. Before joining RPI, Garo obtained an MBA with a specialization in marketing from the Lebanese American University (LAU) in Beirut. While pursuing his MBA, he worked as a summer part-time translator for the International Catholic Migration Commission. His responsibilities included applying his language skills to overcome the language barrier between refugees and immigration officers at the U.S. Embassy in Lebanon. Garo was born into an Armenian family in Beirut and has a B.A. in advertising and communication media from Haigazian University, where he was elected HU Student of the Year 2010. Furthermore, he is fluent in four languages: Arabic, Armenian, English, and French.

Kyungseon Ahn

  • Hometown/Country: Lansing, Michigan, United States
  • Area of Research/Interest: Operations Management, Supply Chain Management, Strategic Purchasing, Supplier Integration
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: Yonsei University, Republic of Korea
  • Undergraduate Major: Law
  • Biography: Kyung Seon Ahn is a Ph.D. student at the Lally School of Management. He joined the program in the fall 2017 semester. His research interests include operations management, such as supply chain management, strategic purchasing, supplier integration, and service operations. He earned his master’s degree in operations management at Yonsei University, Republic of Korea. He has also worked at Dongbu Insurance Co., Ltd, one of the largest insurance companies in Korea, as a sales manager.

Juhi Bhardwaj

  • Hometown/Country: Mumbai, India
  • Area of Research/Interest: Strategic Management
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: Masters of Business Administration, Mumbai University; Bachelors of Science, Mumbai University
  • Undergraduate Major: Finance
  • Biography: Juhi Bhardwaj is a fourth year Ph.D. student researching strategic management. Her research explores corporate restructuring strategies, with papers on initial public offerings (IPOs), investments, and product market competition. She has presented her research at the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS) Annual Meeting and the Product Development and Management Association (PDMA) Annual Conference. Prior to joining RPI, Juhi spent two years in the financial services industry and more than three years in academia. She holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in management studies from Mumbai University. Juhi is a native of Mumbai, India.

Joonhyuk Bok

  • Hometown/Country: Seoul, South Korea
  • Area of Research/Interest: Healthcare Management, Supply Chain Management                                          
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: Master of Science, Yonsei University; Bachelor of Science, Yonsei University
  • Undergraduate Major: Economics
  • Biography: Joonhyuk is a second year Ph.D. student. His research area is operations management, especially healthcare management and supply chain management. Prior to joining the Lally School, he worked at a research institute in Seoul Korea.

Joseph Cabral

  • Hometown/Country: Fall River, Massachusetts, United States 
  • Area of Research/Interest: Strategy and Entrepreneurship
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: Master of Business Administration, Bryant University; Bachelor of Arts, University of Connecticut
  • Undergraduate Major: Political Science
  • Biography: Joseph is a doctoral candidate at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) entering his fifth year of studies. He is interested in corporate innovation strategy, entrepreneurial finance, and startup-incumbent collaboration. In particular, he researches the use of corporate venture capital by incumbent firms as a means to source innovative ideas and beneficial relationships with the startup community. In a secondary stream, he considers how bounded rationality and both inter and intra-firm frictions impact strategic decision making. His goal is to answer both interesting and practically relevant questions that help explain the competitive landscape of emerging industries, products, and companies. Joseph is a native of Massachusetts and proud alumni of the University of Connecticut and Bryant University. Prior to returning to academia for doctoral studies, he worked for seven years at Brown University in a number of financial and administrative roles related to the university's research portfolio. Joseph enjoys snowboarding, watching football, grilling, and a good microbrew.

Huimin (Amy) Chen

  • Hometown/Country: Chaozhou, Guangdong China 
  • Area of Research/Interest: Auditing, Real Earnings Management, Tax Avoidance and Accounting Information Systems
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: Masters of Science, University of Nebraska, Omaha; Bachelors of Arts, Sun Yat-Sen University
  • Undergraduate Major: Accounting
  • Biography: Amy Chen is an accounting and finance Ph.D. student at the Lally School of Management. Her research interests include auditing, real earnings management, tax avoidance, and accounting information system. Her research papers have been presented at American Accounting Association Annual Meetings and Financial Management Association Annual Meetings. Prior to her doctoral studies, Amy received a Master degree in accounting with a minor in economics from the University of Nebraska at Omaha and passed the uniform CPA exam of the U.S. She also holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Sun Yat-sen University, China, worked at KPMG China and became a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) of China in 2012. Born in a small town in China, Chaozhou, Guangdong, she has lived in two cities (Zhuhai and Guangzhou) in China and two cities (Omaha and Albany) in the U.S.

Chaoqun Deng

  • Hometown/Country: Wuhan, China 
  • Area of Research/Interest: Social Media, Sharing Economy
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: Master of Science, Wuhan University of Technology, China; Bachelor of Science, Wuhan University of Technology, China
  • Undergraduate Major: Information Systems
  • Biography: Chaoqun Deng is a Ph.D. candidate in information systems, and her research interests center on the intersection of social media, sharing economy, and firm strategies. In particular, her research utilizes theories from information systems and marketing to examine firm strategies in online digital platforms. Specifically, electronic word of mouth (eWoM) signified by customer reviews has grown in importance in terms of its influence on customer attitudes, customer purchase decisions, and firm performance. Yet, there is limited understanding about what firms should do to deal with eWoM. In her dissertation, Amy develops theoretically anchored frameworks to dig deeper into both the nature of customer reviews and that of managerial responses by using Machine Learning (e.g. Deep Learning) and Natural Language Processing techniques to explore 1) factors that influence the propensity of managerial response, 2) how managers should respond and the effects of their response on future customer attitudes, and 3) how eWoM modulates the effects of visual cues on trust formation and consequently the demand for services in online peer-peer platforms. Her research has been published in proceedings of major conferences, including ICIS, AMCIS, AOM, among others. In addition, she has published two journal papers and has two papers under review at MIS Quarterly and Strategy Management Journal.

Elizabeth Derosier

  • Hometown/Country: St. Paul Minnesota, United States  
  • Area of Research/Interest: Organizational Behavior
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: Bachelor of Science, University of Wisconsin, River Falls
  • Undergraduate Major: Business Administration  
  • Biography: Elizabeth is researching organizational culture within macro organizational behavior. She is particularly interested in developing concepts of leadership, motivation, and job satisfaction with the goal of creating more efficient and productive business organizations. At the University of Wisconsin-River Falls, her undergraduate thesis was a multi-generational investigation into how Traditionalists, Baby Boomers, Generation X, and Millennials respond to human resource management best practices from communication in the workplace to health care packages. Elizabeth’s survey results demonstrate there is little to no effect of generational differences on preferences of management practices. She is hoping to expand this research by studying the application and responses to changes in these practices across the same subjects over a longer period.

Shailesh Divey 

  • Hometown/Country: Mumbai, India  
  • Area of Research/Interest: Supply Chain Risk Management
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: Master of Science (dual), University of Texas; Bachelors of Science, University of Texas 
  • Undergraduate Major: Metallurgical and Materials Engineering   
  • Biography: Shailesh joined the doctoral program in operations management the fall semester of 2017. His research focuses on supply chain risk management, in particular modeling and evaluating supply chain disruptions and investigating optimal solutions for disruption mitigation using analytical and game theoretic approaches. Shailesh received dual masters in mechanical engineering and materials science and engineering from the University of Texas, following which he worked at Daimler AG as a structural analysis programmer. He holds a bachelor's degree in metallurgical and materials engineering, and has over four years of experience working as a mechanical engineer and metallurgist. He also had a stint with the Indian Institute of Technology-Bombay as a web development and strategy technical consultant prior to joining Lally. Shailesh hails from Mumbai, India and has lived extensively in the United States and Switzerland.

Tahseen Hasan

  • Hometown/Country: Originally from Bangladesh; Now a U.S. Citizen living in New York State
  • Area of Research/Interest: Tax and Auditing in Accounting
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: Bachelors of Science, Fordham University  
  • Undergraduate Major: Business Administration/Accounting    
  • Biography: Tahseen is originally from Bangladesh and now is a proud U.S. citizen. His area of research interest is in tax and auditing concepts of accounting. He likes to approach accounting from an interdisciplinary standpoint; therefore, he loves to explore the relation between accounting and psychology / social science concepts. Apart from his research interests and accounting, Tahseen also likes to read about economics, philosophy, psychology, technology, and he plays various sports.

Wenyao Hu

  • Hometown/Country: Nanning, China 
  • Area of Research/Interest: Empirical Corporate Finance, Mergers and Acquisitions, Bank Loan Contracting and Analysts Behavior 
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: Master of Science, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute; Bachelors of Science, Southwestern University of Finance and Economics   
  • Undergraduate Major: Finance     
  • Biography: Wenyao is currently a third-year Ph.D. student in finance. He received his bachelor’s degree in finance from Southwestern University of Finance and Economics (Chengdu, China) in 2013 and his master’s degree in financial engineering and risk analytics from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 2014. His research interests include mergers and acquisitions, bank loan contracting, and analyst behavior. Outside of academia, he gained professional experience in BOC International (China) Limited in Shanghai and China Merchants Bank in Nanning. In his spare time, he loves playing board games, running, playing tennis, and traveling.

Lianlian (Dorothy) Jiang 

  • Hometown/Country: Beijing, China  
  • Area of Research/Interest: Information Systems
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: Master of Science, Clemson University 
  • Undergraduate Major: Computer Science       
  • Biography: Lianlian (Dorothy) received her master’s degree in management information systems from Clemson University in 2015. She also holds a master’s degree in computer science from Peking University (Beijing, China, 2015). Her research interests include online platforms, user-generated content, human computer interaction, and trust and e-commerce.  

Xiuwen Li

  • Hometown/Country: China  
  • Area of Research/Interest: Financial Engineering, Financial Risk Management, Stochastic Programming Theory, Financial Portfolio Optimization Theory, and Asset Pricing  
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: Master of Science, University of Connecticut; Bachelor of Science, China University of Mining & Technology
  • Undergraduate Major: Management in Accounting        
  • Biography: Xiuwen is currently a first year Ph.D. student majoring in finance. Her research interests include financial portfolio optimization theory, models, and financial engineering. She obtained her master’s degree in financial risk management from University of Connecticut in 2017. She co-led research on performances of U.S. closed-ended funds with risk-parity strategy and joined research on international comparison on insider trading regulations. Xiuwen was also admitted as a transfer student at the University of Western Australia, in her junior year, working in its finance program.

Qinglin Liu

  • Hometown/Country: China  
  • Area of Research/Interest: Human Resource Management, Organizational Behavior and Entrepreneurship
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: Master of Arts, Renmin University; Bachelor of Arts, Central University of Finance & Economics
  • Undergraduate Major: Public Administration         
  • Biography: Qinglin Liu is a Ph.D. student specializing in organizational behavior. His primary research interests include human resource management, organizational behavior, leadership, and entrepreneurship. He is especially interested in exploring factors that encourage people to become entrepreneurs and succeed.

William Obenauer

  • Hometown/Country: Warwick, New York, United States  
  • Area of Research/Interest: Contextual Nuances that Influence Diversity and Inclusion in Organizations 
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: Master of Business Administration, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute  
  • Undergraduate Major: Professional Retail Management
  • Biography: Billy is a doctoral student in the organizational behavior track. His research interests include leadership and the use of humor in organizations, but the majority of his research focuses on the contextual nuances that influence diversity and inclusion issues within organizations. He has presented his work at Wharton’s People and Organizations Conference, Purdue University’s Leadership Excellence and Gender in Organizations Conference, and the Workshop on Information Systems and Economics. In addition, he has also presented at the annual meetings of the Academy of Management, the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology, the Southern Management Association, the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences, the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society, the Eastern Academy of Management, and the Midwest Academy of Management. Billy’s professional experience includes leadership roles, such as an elected official, a high school teacher, an NCAA coach, the director of a non-profit organization, and a general manager for both publicly and privately held companies.

Abena Owusu

  • Hometown/Country: Accra, Ghana
  • Area of Research/Interest: Corporate Governance and Financial Risk Governance in Banks
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: Masters of Science, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute; Bachelors of Science, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science & Technology 
  • Undergraduate Major: Actuarial Science 
  • Biography: Abena was born and raised in Accra, the capital city of Ghana. Before coming to RPI for her graduate studies, she graduated with a bachelor’s degree in actuarial science from KNUST. Abena worked as an actuarial assistant at the Ghana Health Insurance Authority for one year. Abena is a third-year Ph.D. student in finance, and her research focuses on corporate governance and financial risk governance in banks. Abena is also interested in assessing how women on corporate boards affect decision-making and governance, for instance, do women bring cooperation to boards and contract and govern strategic alliances differently from male directors? She is also applying textual analysis to annual 10-K filings to describe and assess the risk culture of banks.

Josue Reynoso-Vallejo

  • Hometown/Country: Guadalajara, Mexico
  • Area of Research/Interest: Innovation Management, Technology Entrepreneurship, Business Strategy and Complex Systems
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: Masters of Science, Universidad, Panamericana, Mexico; Bachelors of Science, Universidad, Panamericana, Mexico 
  • Undergraduate Major: Mechatronics
  • Biography: Josué Reynoso is currently a Ph.D. student in strategy, innovation and entrepreneurship at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute where he is doing research on how organizations and individuals identify opportunities for the commercialization of advanced technologies. Prior to starting his doctoral studies, he was assistant professor and head of the Computer Aided Engineering Center at the Engineering School of Universidad Panamericana in Guadalajara, Mexico. He also worked as an application and process engineer for companies in the CAD-CAM, automotive, and precision manufacturing industries, doing work on product development, automation, and software implementation. Josué got his bachelor’s degree in mechatronics engineering (2008), master’s degree in business of technological innovation (2011), and specialty in anthropology and ethics from Universidad Panamericana in Guadalajara, Mexico.

Gilna Samuel

  • Hometown/Country: St. Lucia
  • Area of Research/Interest: Corporate Finance
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: Masters of Science, Penn State University; Bachelors of Science, Morgan State University
  • Undergraduate Major: Mathematics
  • Biography: Gilna is a fifth year Ph.D. student in finance. Her research focuses on corporate finance topics. She has working papers that cover areas, such as governance, payout policy, diversification and hedge fund activism. She has presented her research at the Lally Research Workshop, Financial Management Association (FMA) Annual Meetings, and the American Finance Association (AFA) Ph.D. session. Gilna Samuel is originally from St. Lucia. Before joining RPI, Gilna obtained a bachelor’s degree in mathematics at Morgan State University and a master’s degree in statistics at Pennsylvania State University.

Majeed Simaan

  • Hometown/Country: Israel
  • Area of Research/Interest: Banking and Risk Management
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: Masters of Arts, University of Haifa; Bachelors of Arts, University of Haifa
  • Undergraduate Major: Statistics
  • Biography: Majeed Simaan is a Ph.D. candidate in finance. His research interests revolve around banking and risk management, with emphasis on asset allocation and pricing. He is well versed in research areas related to banking, asset pricing, and financial modeling. He has been involved in a number of projects that apply empirical research tools in the areas of financial networks (interconnectedness), machine learning, and textual analysis. His research has been published in the International Review of Economics and Finance and the Proceedings of the 2016 IEEE Symposium Series on Computational Intelligence. Before joining RPI, Majeed pursued graduate training in the area of mathematical finance at the London School of Economics (LSE). He has a strong quantitative background in both computing and statistical learning. He holds both B.A. and M.A. in statistics from the University of Haifa with specialization in actuarial science. While in London, Majeed worked as a summer part-time quantitative analyst for Pantheon Ventures, during which he helped developing quantitative financial models to forecast private equity (PE) performance and to manage risk involved in PE. 

Haimeng Teng 

  • Hometown/Country: Yantai, China
  • Area of Research/Interest: Corporate Tax Avoidance, Financial Reporting Quality, Auditing Quality, Debt Contracting and Corporate Social Responsibility 
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: Masters of Business Administration, Rochester Institute of Technology; Bachelors of Arts, Northeast Forestry University 
  • Undergraduate Major: Packaging Engineering
  • Biography: Haimeng Teng is an accounting Ph.D. student at the Lally School of Management at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Haimeng’s research interests include corporate tax avoidance, financial reporting quality, auditing quality, debt contracting, and corporate social responsibility. Her research has been presented at the annual meetings of the American Accounting Association, Financial Management Association, International Conference of Financial Engineering and Banking Society, and Hawaii Accounting Research Conference. She has also served as reviewer and/or discussant at the annual meetings of the American Accounting Association, Financial Management Association, Hawaii Accounting Research Conference, and American Taxation Association Midyear Meeting. She has passed all four CPA exams during her Ph.D. program. Haimeng grew up in Yantai, a medium-sized seaside city in China. She enjoys travelling and playing tennis. She is also competing as an amateur ballroom dancer.

Daqi Xin

  • Hometown/Country: China 
  • Area of Research/Interest: IPO, Financial Analysts, Textual Analysis and Investor Attention
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: Masters of Science, University of Texas-Pan American; Masters of Science, Clark University; Bachelors of Science, Hunan University
  • Undergraduate Major: Finance
  • Biography: Daqi Xin is a fourth-year Ph.D. student in finance. His research interests include IPO, financial analysts, textual analysis, and investor attention. He has presented his research at the Eastern Finance Association 2016 Annual Meeting and 2017 China International Conference in Finance (CICF). Before joining in RPI, Daqi received his M.S. in mathematics from the University of Texas-Pan American, M.S. in finance from Clark University, and B.S. in finance from Hunan University, China. 

Liang Zhao

  • Hometown/Country: China 
  • Area of Research/Interest: IT Strategy and Business Value of IT
  • Undergraduate Education Institution: East China University of Science and Technology 
  • Undergraduate Major: Project Management and Law
  • Biography: Liang is a second year Ph.D. student in information systems at Lally School of Management. His general research interest focuses on the impact of IT at the firm level. Specifically, he is interested in IT strategy and IT business value.


Doctoral program formats

  • Formal Courses
  • Seminars
  • Independent Studies
  • Examinations
  • Written Papers
  • Workshops
  • Presentations
  • Dissertation

Areas of research

  • Finance and Accounting
  • Information Systems
  • Organization Behavior
  • Strategic Management
  • Marketing
  • Operations Management

Additional concentrations

  • Information Technology
  • Innovation Management and New Product Development
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Organizational Behavior
  • Global Management

Program structure

  • Year one fulfills the breadth of requirements and prepares students to conduct research
  • Year two consists of area-oriented coursework and a qualifying and comprehensive exam
  • Year three consists of dissertation research and a candidacy exam
  • Year four consists of dissertation research 
  • Year five consists of dissertation research and an oral dissertation defense 

Academic resources and support services

  • Learning and career development assistance
  • Legal services
  • Health services
  • A fitness center
  • Child care services
  • A graduate council
  • Married-student organizations
  • Graduate and family housing


The Don Shohfi Outstanding Doctoral Student Paper Award was presented at the 2018 Lally Research Symposium on Friday, May 4. A poll was conducted and the winner and runners up were picked based on this poll. Here are the winners. Thanks to Tom Shohfi’s family for the sponsorship.

  • 2nd Runner Up: Wenyao Hu
    What’s Really in a Deal? Evidence from M&A Calls
  • 1st Runner Up: Majeed Simaan
    Estimation Risk and Implicit Value of Index Tracking
  • Winner: Chaoqun Deng
    Managerial Response to Online Compliments: Helpful or Harmful?