Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA)

UBI Difference

World Class Faculty and Thesis Supervisors

  • A combination of established academics and researchers from both China and Europe, providing students opportunities to examine, critique and appreciate the best research practices through a global perspective

Structured Research Journey

  • A 3-stage structured framework to ensure that students acquire all the necessary skillsets, knowledge systems and core competencies to complete their thesis

Dynamic Thinking and Peer Group Interaction

  • Small group interactions and activities are designed to stimulate mutual critique and challenge existing business theories and literature in order to form new interpretations of knowledge that are most relevant to current contexts.

Industrial Visits and Exchanges

  • UBI’s DBA programme provides students opportunities to organise industrial visits to their peers’ organisations to learn more their strengths, qualities and best practices.

Programme Structure

Learning in Stage one takes the form of classroom teaching, discussions and independent reading of the selected literature. 

  • Complete 12 compulsory modules
  • Complete each module´s individual coursework report
  • Each module is worth 10 credits

Preparation for the DBA dissertation continues in Stage Two as students participate in a series of doctoral workshops organised by UBI DBA faculty members. These workshops scaffold students’ acquisition of skills and knowledge related to the dissertation process and further explore some of the research considerations introduced in Stage One. 

  • 8 compulsory modules
  • Submit dissertation proposal
  • Obtain ethical clearance for research
  • Pass proposal defense

In Stage Three, students conduct further independent research and begin drafting the dissertation. Periodic consultations with their DBA dissertation advisor will be scheduled. Once the final draft of the dissertation is completed, students will defend their dissertation to justify the research assumptions, data and outcomes. 

  • Independent research
  • Consultations with dissertation advisor
  • Complete and submit dissertation
  • Mock dissertation defense
  • Pass dissertation defense

Research Journey


  • Complete 8 compulsory modules
  • Complete 2 elective modules (from a selection of 5 modules)
  • Complete each module’s individual coursework report or group project report



  • 8 compulsory doctoral research workshops
  • Submit thesis proposal
  • Obtain ethical clearance for research
  • Pass proposal defence


  • Independent research
  • Consultations with thesis advisor
  • Complete and submit thesis
  • Mock thesis defence
  • Pass thesis defence

After Research Journey:

Core Modules

  1. Corporate Innovation and Strategic Management Research
  2. Macroeconomic Policy Analysis
  3. Financial Market Research: Financial Decisions under Changing Environment
  4. Epistemology for Management Research
  5. Doctoral Research Design
  6. Methodology for Applied Business Research I: Research Model and Theory
  7. Methodology for Applied Business Research II: Quantitative and Qualitative Research
  8. Doctoral Research Fundamentals and Literature Review

Elective Modules

  1. Business Model Design and Innovation
  2. On Innovation: the Perspectives of Analogy of Eastern & Western Civilization
  3. Doctoral Research into Investment Behaviour


The UBI Doctorate in Business Administration is designed for executives who wish to advance their careers in management or consulting, through a high-quality and practice-focused research programme. The programme delivers a high-quality doctoral education, culminating with a major research study that effectively blends scholarly accomplishment with a practical application of theory, to develop leadership and other competencies.​

Application Requirements

Applicants for the DBA programme should meet the following requirement:

Programme Registration

  • The DBA programme is a part-time 3 years programme comprising coursework, doctoral workshops and a thesis. The programme is taught in Mandarin at our Shanghai campus.

  • UBI offers two intakes for the DBA degree programme: one in July and one in November. 

Programme Validation

Middlesex University London is a British university based in London, with a distinguished heritage of excellence and innovation in higher education. It is one of the top 100 Young Universities in the World (Times Higher Education) and top 10 transnational universities (Times Higher Education) in the world.

There are over 40,000 students on Middlesex courses at campuses in London, Dubai and Mauritius, and with prestigious academic partners across the world.

The Middlesex vision is to be internationally outstanding in teaching and research. The University has a reputation for the highest quality British teaching and research that makes a real difference to people’s lives and a practical, innovative approach to providing business solutions. 

This is a programme developed, delivered and assessed by a partner institution, and quality assured by Middlesex University. Students receive a Middlesex award upon successful completion.



John Yu

Founder, Mytech | UBI DBA alumni
“A world-class DBA programme should inspire business leaders to approach complex organisation issues in a more strategic, creative and analytical manner. This has been the most rewarding and impactful part of my DBA journey. “

Zheng Hai Fa

Vice-Chairman and Co-Founder, Minhai Biological Technology | UBI DBA student
“UBI Shanghai’s DBA programme has equipped me with a transformational set of applied research skills, leading to new breakthroughs in my organisational leadership.”

Sun Wei

Chairman and CEO, Guigu Investments | UBI DBA alumni
“Life is a journey of self-actualisation. I believe in the full development of one’s ability and potential, yet it is only possible with the support of a strong learning community. The UBI community continues to be an invaluable part of my life after graduation.”

Zhao Li Jia

CEO and Founder, Mingjia Development Co. Ltd | UBI DBA student
“As an entrepreneur, I am constantly looking for fresh perspectives to strengthen my company. My lecturers, dissertation supervisors and peers in the programme have provided important insights to the issues I seek to address through research.”