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Executive PhD

  • Diploma
    Doctor of Philosophy
  • Mode
    Part-time (blended)
  • Course date
    May 2025
  • Duration
    4 years

The part-time Executive PhD programme in Private Sector Development (preferably for Emerging Economies) allows working professionals and researchers with full-time or part-time jobs to combine their careers with obtaining a PhD. The programme provides advanced training in the theory and skills crucial to private sector development, design and research.

As the highest academic qualification, obtaining a PhD will improve your career prospects both in academia and in business. In addition, you will make an original contribution to your field of interest that will add to previous research.

During the programme, you will benefit from the extensive knowledge and expertise of the key lecturers and supervisors in the programme, who are leading scholars in the fields of the research themes.

By joining the programme, you will become part of the stimulating and challenging research community of Maastricht University School of Business and Economics (SBE) and Maastricht School of Management (MSM).

Research focus
Within the Executive PhD programme, the PhD candidate’s research should focus on Private Sector Development, ideally within the context of emerging markets. Within this area topics may relate to the following themes: 

Video poster
"The flexibility offered by the MSM Executive PhD in Private Sector Development really suits what I was looking for. The programme gives me the ability to work and perform research simultaneously. The first on-campus days were great. The MSM team and the professors ensured that the onboarding was smooth. The cohort is very diverse and multicultural. We exchanged and discussed our research topics, that are all touching various interesting areas, be it in finance, entrepreneurship, technology or else. Embarking for a PhD is a great intellectual challenge, but I am sure very rewarding. I am really looking forward to this unique journey."
Jean-Christophe Nicaise (France) current participant in the Executive PhD programme (intake 2)


Maastricht School of Management (MSM) is part of the Maastricht University School of Business and Economics (SBE). SBE has been awarded three prestigious accreditations, AACSB, EQUIS and AMBA, resulting in what is known as the Triple Crown accreditation. Only 1% of business schools worldwide can boast this honour, many of which are SBE partner institutes.