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Episode Info: Exploring the DBA (Doctorate in Business Administration) program at Grenoble Ecole de Management [Show Summary] Would you like to be the kind of business leader who wants to define problems and design solution based on rigorous research? Are you seeking a global, part-time program that goes beyond the masters? Do you like the idea of being a chef as opposed to a cook? Dr. Michelle Mielly, Academic Director of the DBA U.S. for GEM, gives us the scoop on Grenoble Ecole de Management DBA, a program that helps it students define problems and design solutions based on rigorous research. Interview with Dr. Michelle Mielly, Academic Director of DBA U.S. at GEM [Show Notes] Our guest today, Dr. Michelle Mielly, does a lot of different things as Associate Professor at the Grenoble Ecole de Management, AKA GEM, where she’s been since 2010. I’m not going to list them all, but the most relevant role for us today is as Academic Director of the DBA U.S. for GEM. Originally from the U.S., Dr. Mielly earned her bachelors at Southwestern University in Texas, a masters from Penn State and Harvard, and her PhD, in Anthropology and Francophone Civilization, is also from Harvard. She has worked in France, the U.S., the Ivory Coast, and Central America. Dr. Mielly, I want to start with two really basic questions, but I think they are ones that a segment of listeners may have: a. What’s the difference between a PhD and a DBA, or are they synonymous? [2:31] They are very similar, and are both doctoral qualifications as well as terminal degrees. The DBA designates a traditionally part-time program that is in business administration as opposed to an academic qualification. DBA students are practitioners of management or do applied management, and are often linked to part-time and professional status. The DBA is a little less academic than a PhD. There are still a lot of PhD ingredients, but the level of contribution in terms of a thesis will be more practitioner-based than theoretical. b. What can someone with a DBA do professionally outside of academia that someone with an MBA can’t do? [4:51] When you get an MBA it’s very rigorous but you are often working on the case method learning how to establish and replicate good recipes. You have the ingredients and the recipes and you are cooking up great solutions. When you go for a doctorate you are writing the recipes. The MBA helps you become solutions-oriented. In the DBA you become the chef, creating recipes, testing them, and looking for different outcomes. There is a lot less certitude, and much of it is a period where you are exploring and changing your mindset. In terms of careers, we have a lot of different outcomes. We have one graduate who worked to develop his own algorithm for a hedge fund for socially responsible investing, honing in on very specific skills. He is now applying that in New York. Often we have folks who were CMOs or CFOs and become attracted to consulting firms. They become managerial...
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