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Doctorate / PhD Program

We consider the education and supervision of doctoral students as crucial for achieving our research objectives. Most of our doctoral students are employed by the Institute as Research and Teaching Associates. The doctoral program offered by the Institute for Service Marketing and Tourism and it's partner institutions is designed to provide doctoral students with the training necessary for a successful academic research and teaching career, a position in marketing research institutions, or in advanced management consulting companies.

This training is accomplished by a combination of the following ingredients: Students select courses in accordance with the formal requirements of WU's doctoral / PhD programs. In addition, students attend courses which meet their individual needs and interests in the field of Marketing and/or related disciplines. They interact and work with faculty members on joint research, conduct a series of original research projects which ultimately lead to a dissertation, and assist in the teaching of marketing courses. The ultimate goal is to generate new knowledge through rigorous and high-impact research, which is also of practical relevance.

Our doctoral students are expected to make a significant research contribution in the Institute's research areas or a related field. The outcome of their research work is published in international research journals - ideally, in the major journals in the field of marketing - and presented at international academic conferences; the WU Marketing Department's dissertation guideline (in German language) serves as a threshold for the minimum requirements expected from successful doctoral students. Attending advanced graduate courses is part of the training.

Approval for Supervision of Doctoral Studies

Vacancies in Research and Teaching Associates positions at the Institute for Service Marketing and Tourism are formally advertised via

Generally speaking, successful candidates are expected to have acquired a solid academic qualification (Master's degree or equivalent) and a profound knowledge of quantitative research methods (e.g., in the field of marketing science, statistics, consumer research, psychometrics, or econometrics). Applicants should also have an interest in developing and/or applying advanced research methodologies to managerially relevant marketing problems.

It is also required that doctoral students have substantial empirical research experience. Computing skills must go beyond the user knowledge of standard software packages like SPSS or SAS and will have to include programming and/or usage skills of script languages like R ( or Matlab ( and modeling systems like Mplus, WinBugs, and SmartPLS.

A very good written and oral command of the English language is required (for international candidates, German language skills are a plus). Informative references are desirable.

Doctoral students at WU Vienna who are not affiliated with the Institute may apply for first or second supervision by sending the following documents to (a) A CV including a certified GMAT score, (b) informative recommendation letters, and (c) an elaborated presentation of their research idea, which has to explicitly demonstrate fit into the research streams pursued by the Institute's faculty members. Please note that the consideration of dissertation project proposals from doctoral students, who are not employed by WU, is subject to free supervision capacity.

Participation in Research Seminars

In addition to the doctoral-level courses taken in accordance with the Institute's faculty advisor and the formal requirements of WU's doctoral / PhD programs, the Institute currently organizes two types of research seminars. All doctoral students are expected to sign up for and to attend all research seminars during their entire tenure in the doctoral / PhD program.

Research Seminar in Service Marketing

This seminar is a central feature of the intellectual life of doctoral students and faculty members at the Institute for Service Marketing and Tourism. In general, all topics and methodological approaches within the broad field of marketing and related disciplines are welcome for discussion. There will also be occasional faculty presentations designed to help students plan and manage their dissertation process.

The seminar serves as a platform for doctoral students and faculty members to meet and discuss their research work with each other and experienced researchers. It aims to provide conceptual, theoretical, and methodological advice and guidance regarding the development and acceleration of individual or joint research projects. The seminar also intends to help faculty and doctoral students to keep track of the recent theoretical and methodological developments in the marketing community and to both seek and receive feedback on their own research.

For more information about the seminar click here.

Marketing Research Seminar

This seminar is closely linked to other seminars and teaching formats, in particular the Marketing Department's Research Seminar Series. To take full advantage of the faculty expertise offered at WU's Marketing Department, all doctoral students supervised or advised by the Institute's faculty are expected to attend all the seminars in the Research Seminar Series.

Seminar speakers' schedules typically include a meeting with doctoral students and the option for reserving indivdual time slots with our visitors; students are expected to take advantage of these opportunities to interact with visiting scholars from the world's top universities and to learn about the field as a whole.

In addition to the networking possibilities, this seminar aims to keep doctoral students updated with fresh research results and recent developments in the academic marketing community. By reflecting these from the perspective of their own research projects, students are enabled to receive early feedback, to gain new insights, and/or to acquire new research ideas. Students should also be enabled to translate original research, which is not necessarily within the core focus of their own projects, into research questions and to discuss them.

For more information about the seminar click here.