Doctoral Programme

Research Master in Management


The Research Master in Management of the Aix-Marseille Université provides the optimal conditions for access to a doctoral programme that meets the requirements for international research in management. It enables students to follow an academic track to become university or business school professor/researcher. It also opens to positions in the domain of consulting as well as management positions in national and international organizations.

This Research Master is structured around two sets of courses: the common methodological courses that are indispensable to conduct research in the Management Sciences and specialized courses that answer to the expectations of research and organizations.

Admission Requirements

Admission to the Research Master in Management requires a diploma that is the equivalent of a B.A. or B.S. plus the first year of a two-year M.A or M.S. Most of the candidates come from the classic programmes in Management and Economics (universities and business schools). The Research Master is also open to students from other disciplines (schools of engineering, sociology, mathematics, philosophy, law, political science, etc.) and their applications are encouraged.

Application files must include the following: Tage-Mage or GMAT scores, TOEFL, TOEIC or IELTS scores for French speakers, DELF/DALF scores for non-French speakers – TCF 4 of the equivalent – copies of diplomas, letters of recommendation, cover letter and an essay. Candidates who meet the above requirements are then interviewed by an admissions board.

Required diplomas: Master’s or an equivalent diploma (Bac + 4 or more for French applicants) (240 ECTS) or an equivalent level (foreign diploma, field experience (VAE)…).

Research Master Structure

The Research Master is linked to three schools within Aix-Marseille Université: the School of Economics and Management (FEG or Faculté d’Economie et de Gestion), the Aix-Marseille Graduate School of Management (IAE or Institut d’Administration des Entreprises) and the Institute of Public Management and Territorial Governance (IMPGT or Institut de Management Public et de Gouvernance Territoriale). It therefore benefits from their experience in teaching and research in the Management Sciences.

This programme offers a broad range of courses that enable students to major in one of the five following options:

  • Financial Management - Responsible: Patrick Rousseau (IAE)
  • Entrepreneurship, Information and Internationalisation - Responsible: Serge Amabile (FEG)
  • Public Management - Responsible: Robert Fouchet (IMPGT)
  • Human Resources Management and Strategy - Responsible: Emmanuelle Reynaud (IAE)
  • Marketing - Responsible: Elyette Roux (IAE)

Students attend two types of courses:

  • Common core courses which provide the methodological and epistemological bases of research in the Management Sciences.
  • Courses specific to each major.

The programme goes from September to September. The first trimester is devoted to the common core with the next two trimesters to specialized courses in the chosen major.

A final oral exam closes the teaching phase in April. The May-June months are devoted to the writing of a Master dissertation which must be defended in the last week of June for the first session, thereby validating the programme.

Career Opportunities for Future Master Graduates

Up to the present, approximately half of the Research Master students have enrolled in the doctoral programme in management in order to become university or business school professor/researchers. To this end, the Research Master team of professors/researchers helps students define their dissertation projects, choose their thesis supervisor and continue their doctoral studies at the CERGAM. They also help students obtain financing for their studies: regional scholarships, research grants and CIFRE contracts (theses financed by companies). The other half of the students take up careers in consulting or become executive directors (marketing, human resources, strategy) in national or international companies or organizations. The internationalization of Aix-Marseille Université with students from five continents and numerous renowned visiting professors make this programme a real asset in the development of your career.


The Doctoral Programme

The aim of the doctoral programme in management is to help the participants produce a thesis dissertation and research at a high level that adheres to the best international academic standards. This programme leads to a career as professor/researcher or researcher and corporate consultant.

After obtaining a Research Master in Management, admission to the doctoral programme is granted after presentation of a research project that is backed by a thesis supervisor and approved by the Aix-Marseille Université Doctoral School of Economics and Management Sciences (or Ecole Doctorale en Sciences Economiques et Gestion). In some cases, the Research Master can be replaced by an equivalent foreign diploma or a previous research experience.

The programme includes doctoral seminars organized by the CERGAM and other research centers in the Doctoral School. These seminars provide doctoral students with the most advanced research techniques. They are compulsory during the first two years of the programme.

The programme also includes progress workshops organised by the CERGAM. They enable doctoral students to regularly formalize their research work and submit it to the reactions of CERGAM professors/researchers as well to other doctoral students. They are an ideal place for learning how to conduct research and prepare future presentations to be submitted at conferences, seminars and workshops.

Beginning in the second year of the programme:

  • doctoral students are encouraged to participate in at least one annual conference and to publish at least one CERGAM working paper. Papers that are accepted at conferences following peer-review will be financed by a contribution from the CERGAM for registration and travel. In addition to doctoral seminars and workshops, doctoral students are encouraged to participate at the CEFAG (FNEGE) and at the EDAMBA Summer School (European Doctoral Association in Management and Business Administration).
  • doctoral students are given financial aid to perform research abroad (Europe, USA, Canada, Australia) at CERGAM partner universities and research centers.

A preliminary thesis defense before 2 or 3 professors will enable doctoral students to make final improvements and subsequently make a high-quality thesis defense after three years of research.