The Management Science group at Kent Business School is one of Europe’s leading centres in the areas of location analysis and transportation and logistics. Particular interests of the staff include discrete and continuous location, routing problems, including green or reverse logistics, and the design of heuristic and exact solution methods.
The group is also known in the areas of soft OR, research metrics, big data, data envelopment analysis, and environmental management. We welcome student research projects on a variety of topics including:
- Location analysis
- Routing problems
- Critical Infrastructure Protection
- Environmental management
- Operations management
- Multivariate analysis
- Big data
- Insurance/warranty data analysis and management
- Research metrics
- Soft OR
- Data envelopment analysis and performance measurement
Students working on relevant research topics in logistics or performance measurement are invited to join the Centre for Logistics and Heuristic Optimisation or the Anglo-Chinese Business and Management Centre, respectively.
The group is a member of NATCOR and students can attend a wide range of courses and workshops in the field of operational research and management science. Students interested in more mathematical topics are advised to follow the ‘Operational Research’ programme while those interested in more applied topics or operations management are advised to choose ‘Management Science’.
You will be based either at the Canterbury or Medway campus, depending on where your first supervisor is based, for the duration of your PhD. Should you be based at Medway you will be expected to travel to Canterbury for compulsory modules and events run by the Graduate School. There is a regular University shuttle bus, which runs between Canterbury and Medway during term-time, this service is free for students.
About Kent Business School
Kent Business School has over 25 years’ experience delivering business education. Our portfolio of postgraduate programmes demonstrates the breadth and depth of our expertise. Academic research and links with global business inform our teaching, ensuring a curriculum that is relevant and current. We are ranked as a top 30 UK business school for the standard of our teaching and student satisfaction. We also hold a number of accreditations by professional bodies.
Studying at Kent Business School (KBS) gives you the opportunity to increase your employability with real-life case studies, a student council and a business society. We have strong links to local and national organisations providing opportunities for projects, internships and graduate placements. The School attracts many high-profile speakers from industry and last year included visits and lectures from staff of the Bank of England, BAE Systems, Barclays, Lloyds Insurance, Cummins, Delphi and Kent County Council.
The School currently has 60 PhD students, who form a dynamic and close-knit research community.
In the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014, we were placed 25th (out of 101 institutions) in the UK for research intensity in business and management studies and 98% of our research was judged to be of international quality. The School’s environment was judged to be conducive to supporting the development of research of international excellence.
The School was also ranked 24th for its breadth and depth of research across the whole community of research active staff by the Association of Business Schools.
Each research student is supported by a supervisory team (usually two members of academic staff) who give guidance about the nature of the research, the standard of work required, and about the relevant literature and sources that should be consulted.
Students meet with supervisors each month in person to agree upon a schedule of work, and bring written work for comment and discussion. The co-supervisor provides additional input and ensures continuity.
Formal progression reviews are held at key points in your programme and each student participates in a mandatory research training programme.
The KBS PhD programme is designed to provide a thorough training for research careers in academia or industry. Our students generally take up academic appointments in UK or international higher education institutions or work in policy or industry settings.
Kent Business School is a member of the European Foundation for Management Development (EMFD) and the Chartered Association of Business Schools (CABS); and the Kent MBA is an Association of MBAs (AMBA) accredited programme. In addition, KBS have accreditations with The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), The Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) and The Chartered Institute of Marketing.
KBS is a signatory of the United Nation's Principles for Responsible Management Education (PRME), which provides a global network for academic institutions to advance corporate sustainability and social responsibility.
Kent Business School PhD students all receive:
- Access to office space with a laptop for the duration of their studies
- Funds for conference attendance and research expenses
- Research methods training
- Full access to the facilities of the Graduate School
All first year PhD students participate in research training programme, including:
- Relevant research methods
- Theory of management and in specialist management topics related to your research
- Skills-based courses in areas such as statistics, computing, electronic literature searching and languages
In addition, students participate in School research seminars and postgraduate training events organised through the Graduate School. PhD students with scholarships or part-time teaching within Kent Business School also take modules from the Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education.
KBS students benefit from training and development opportunities made available through our membership of NATCOR, the ESRC’s South East Doctoral Training Centre, and the European Doctoral Programmes Association (EDAMBA).
Researcher Development Programme
Kent's Graduate School co-ordinates the Researcher Development Programme for research students, which includes workshops focused on research, specialist and transferable skills. The programme is mapped to the national Researcher Development Framework and covers a diverse range of topics, including subject-specific research skills, research management, personal effectiveness, communication skills, networking and teamworking, and career management skills.
Applicants should hold a 2.1 at undergraduate level and a Merit at Master’s level in a relevant discipline, from a UK or other approved university and/or equivalent. You must submit a research proposal of approximately 1,500 words on your intended topic.
All applicants are considered on an individual basis and additional qualifications, professional qualifications and experience will also be taken into account when considering applications.
Please see our International Student website for entry requirements by country and other relevant information for your country. Please note that international fee-paying students cannot undertake a part-time programme due to visa restrictions.
English language entry requirements
The University requires all non-native speakers of English to reach a minimum standard of proficiency in written and spoken English before beginning a postgraduate degree. Certain subjects require a higher level.
For detailed information see our English language requirements web pages.
Need help with English?
Please note that if you are required to meet an English language condition, we offer a number of pre-sessional courses in English for Academic Purposes through Kent International Pathways.
Research activities at Kent Business School are broadly organised into six areas;
- Management Science
- People, Management and Organisation
- Strategy and International Business
Our Management Science group covers a wide range of research areas in Operational Research and Systems Thinking. These include research in the area of logistics including green logistics and network security with a special emphasis on the innovative design and analysis of heuristic and exact optimisation, DEA, operation management, multi-variate analysis, biometrics, multi-methodology and Soft OR/Systems. The group is now a member of NATCOR.
For more information, see our Applied Research Centres:
Staff research interests
Our world-class academics provide research students with excellent supervision. Kent Business School was placed 25th in the UK for business and management studies on its 'research intensity' in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF).
Kent Business School has over 30 eligible research degree supervisors. Postgraduate research can take place in any subject area where they have expertise.
Please note, it is possible for students to be supervised by a member of academic staff from any of Kent’s schools, providing their expertise matches your research interests. Use our ‘find a supervisor’ search to search by staff member or keyword.
Full details of staff research interests can be found on the School's website.
The 2019/20 annual tuition fees for Home/EU PG Research programmes have not yet been set by the Research Councils UK. This is ordinarily announced in March.
General additional costs
Find out more about general additional costs that you may pay when studying at Kent.
Search our scholarships finder for possible funding opportunities. You may find it helpful to look at both: