call download fax letter pdf search x chevron
Stage Image
Dr. rer. pol


Stipend & Tuition Waiver

Programme Start

5 Years

Application Deadline
15 January

Programme Overview

Frankfurt School of Finance & Management is one of Europe’s leading business schools with an internationally recognized reputation for leading research. We are determined to attract the most talented doctoral students in accounting, finance and management and we offer a stimulating academic environment.

Our faculty have placed students at international universities and research institutions, including Technical University of Munich, University of California, WU Vienna, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Georgetown University.

The five year doctoral programme commences with intensive course work (term 1 to 3). Doctoral students focus on research techniques and methods as well as on their chosen area of academic specialization Accounting, Finance or Management.

Furthermore, The Master of Business Research & Analytics (MBRA) is an integrated part of the programme. After the first two years of the programme Bachelor graduates have the opportunity to receive their Master’s degree while studying and researching in the doctoral programme.

While our primary intention is providing graduates with an ideal platform to enter the world of academia, their research topics are also directly relevant for business and politics. We train our students to develop solutions to complex problems and to develop social and conceptual skills they need to advise others. Our faculty provides high-quality supervision and an exciting state-of-the-art campus environment.

Upon successful completion of studies and research results, Frankfurt School awards a doctoral degree in economics, Doctor rerum politicarum or Dr. rer. pol., the German equivalent to the PhD.

Frankfurt School offers fully-funded study places and a generous monthly stipend for up to five years.


In the first year and a half, doctoral students attend core courses, elective courses and concentration courses in their respective academic specialization. In this phase they obtain the knowledge and skills to engage in their own research.

The three specializations: Accounting, Finance and Management follow a similar structure.

Semester 1 - 3

Mathematics and Statistics

Course Description

  • Sets in n-dim. Real Space and Their Properties
  • Calculus of Several Variables
  • Functions of Several Variables
  • Implicit Functions and Their Derivatives
  • Quadratic Forms and Definite Matrices
  • Unconstrained Optimization
  • Constrained Optimization
  • Concave and Quasiconcave Functions
  • Economic Applications
  • Eigenvalues and Eigenvectors
  • Advanced Linear Algebra
  • Advanced Analysis
  • Probability Theory
  • Basic Statistics


Undergraduate Calculus

Course Structure

  • Linear algebra
  • Calculus
  • Optimization
  • Statistics


Course Description

  • General Equilibrium Theory
  • Dominant strategies and applications
  • Nash Equilibrium and applications
  • Subgame Perfect Equilibrium and applications
  • Bayesian Equilibrium
  • Perfect Bayesian Equilibrium and applications
  • The Theory of Incomplete Contracts
  • Cooperative Game Theory


Microeconomics at graduate level.

Course Structure

In each section, the module starts with a presentation of the respective theoretical concepts and then moves on to examples. In these examples, special emphasis is put on applications from management, finance and industrial organization. The first section deals with consumer decision making and general equilibrium and is followed by 5 sections on no cooperative game theory. The final two sections deal with cooperative game theory and bi-forms, i.e. the combination of the two game theoretic solution concepts as applied by incomplete contract theory.

Concentration Courses

Each student chooses a concentration before starting the programme and work together with the professors of the respective department throughout the entire doctoral programme. Each concentration has a set curriculum of core modules and electives to be completed.

Finance Concentration

Management Concentration

Accounting Concentration


Course Description

The course covers the following topics:

  • Review of statistics
  • The Single-Equation Linear Model and OLS Estimation
  • Instrumental Variables Estimation of Single-Equation Linear Models
  • Estimating Systems of Equations by OLS and GLS
  • System Estimation by Instrumental Variables
  • Basic Linear Unobserved Effects Panel Data Models
  • Discrete Response Models
  • Censored Regression Models


Basic knowledge of econometrics and statistics and algebra at the Ievel of an undergraduate course.

Course Structure

The course closely follows the main textbook of the course. While the course is self-contained, following the main textbook provides the participants with a well-structured source for further reading and deeper understanding of the topics. Topics are discussed from a theoretical point of view to provide the participants with a proper understanding of the econometric models. These discussions provide key knowledge on how different econometric models work and most importantly shed light on their limitations. The course also provides step by step application of new tools to different data sets in computer lab. The empirical assignments discussed in the class are generally replication of some of the empirical works that have been done by different researchers.

The participants must turn in assignments. These assignments are in general empirical in nature. The participants are encouraged to form groups to work on the assignments. The performance of the students on the assignments and on a final exam will ultimately determine the overall performance of the participants.

Advanced Empirical Methods

Course content coming soon.

Independent Study Courses

Throughout the year students are welcome to attend various seminars related to their concentrations where internal and external researchers present their work and the audience involves itself in an exchange of thoughts and discussions on the topic. 

The sessions take place on a weekly basis and students have the opportunity to meet the speakers and faculty members before or after the seminars and engage in individual discussions.

More information & dates

Semester 4

2nd Year Paper

To enter the research phase of the programme, students need to pass a qualifying exam and submit a second year paper.

It is the first research paper the students deliver, that is: the first piece of their very own presentable research work.

Semester 5 - 10

Research, Dessertation & Defence

The aim of the research phase is for candidates to dedicate themselves to their research projects, produce scholarly papers and present their research at international academic conferences. They also have the opportunity to interact with international scholars visiting Frankfurt School to present research in the seminar series.


Take your research abroad

As well as doing your research on campus, you also have the flexibility to pursue your doctoral study abroad, in a country and university of your choice. Our faculty facilitates you with connections in global leading universities. This gives you the opportunity to present your research to experts in your field and build a network with recognised professors.

Expanding your academic network will not only support your final research but will also open doors for your career and future placement opportunities.

Matthias Lassak

Doctoral Programme in Finance

Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania

During your time abroad you are encouraged to take courses alongside international researchers and will have the opportunity to attend several conferences. This will allow you to not only participate as an expectator but also present your work.

Frankfurt School is able to provide financial support towards your international experience. Each candidate's monetary award and period of time spent abroad will be arranged on an individual basis in accordance to the research department.

Ruishen Zhang

Doctoral Programme in Accounting

MIT Sloan School of Management

Student funding and scholarships

Frankfurt School offers eight fully-funded study places for the doctoral programme in order to attract and support the brightest minds in academia.

Students are expected to devote 100% of their working time to their masters and doctoral studies at Frankfurt School for up to five years.

Funding includes a tuition fee waiver and a cost-of-living stipend. The monthly stipend comprises of € 1,200.

The stipend will be granted for five years conditional on the continued satisfaction of all academic programme requirements.

From the second year onwards doctoral students may receive an additional € 400 for their involvement as a teaching or research assistant. Frankfurt School students thus have a total of €1,600 for their living expenses.

Furthermore Frankfurt School covers costs related to research, including conferences and overseas visits.

Application process

1. Target Group

Outstanding graduates of a Bachelor‘s or Master’s programme in business administration, finance, management, accounting or related fields who aspire to launch an academic career.

Candidates in the final year of a Master’s or Bachelor’s programme are welcome to apply with their most recent academic transcript. Please note that the degree has to be completed by the time of the beginning of the PhD. The expected grade of the applicants may not be less than a “B” grade point average or 75% of the achievable credits. Foreign degrees will be checked regarding their equivalence.

2. Online Application

The first step of our application process is to complete the online application form. You will need to upload the following required documents. Please note that you need a certified English or German translation for all documents, that are not originally in German or English. The application platform will open from September 15th until January 15th.

Required Documents

  • CV and list of publications (if existent)
  • Certified copy of your University Entrance Qualification (Abitur, A-levels or equivalent)
  • Certified copy of your University Degree Certificate or equivalent and academic transcript of records
  • Official GMAT or GRE results
  • Proof of English Language Proficiency Test (TOEFL IBT min. score of 100/IELTS min. score of 7.0)
  • Two letters of recommendation from a former academic tutor or from another person in an academic environment.
  • Statement of purpose and research interest (description of a possible research project, 2-5 pages, demonstrating how the candidate plans to apply his/her particular interests, skills and expertise to the pursuit of his/her academic objectives)

3. Interview

Successful applicants will be invited to a Skype interview with faculty members of the chosen concentration.

4. Results

The final decision regarding admission to our doctoral programme will be made by the Committee for Doctorate Proceedings. It is based on the applicants overall portfolio and the interview. The results will be communicated after the final decision.

GMAT Preparation Course

The GMAT is a challenging exam requiring substantial preparation for optimal performance. This course provides students with all the essential tips and necessary preparation for high performance and excellent exam results.