PhD proposal guidance for business, hospitality, economics or politics programmes
Before applying for a business, hospitality and tourism, politics or economics PhD, please read our guidance on submitting a suitable research proposal.
A crucial element of your PhD application is the research proposal. We recognise that research proposals are likely to evolve and change after registration; this initial proposal is used to:
- Determine your potential for research at doctoral level
- Ensure that the proposed topic is suitable for an in-depth study
- Determine the availability of academics who will supervise the research.
Business, hospitality and tourism, law and politics PhDs
You should write a minimum of 3,500 words (excluding references) and no more than 5,000 words (excluding references), using the following layout.
Title of proposed thesis.
- Background to the research topic and why you have chosen it
- The specific problem/s or question/s the study will address
- The research aims and objectives and any hypotheses or research propositions
- Expected contribution to scholarship/knowledge (applied and/or theoretical).
Review important literature relating to your proposed topic. Within this you should use the literature to:
- Demonstrate up-to-date knowledge of the research field
- Justify the choice of research topic
- Justify the original contribution your research is likely to make. For example, highlight the gap in current knowledge you intend to fill.
- What type of data (qualitative/quantitative/both), material or resources the study will use and how you will gather them
- How you will analyse the data/material once they have been collected
- Ethical considerations that are likely to be involved in the study
- Justification for your choice of methodology/ies.
Provide a realistic proposed work plan and timetable.
The proposal should be referenced correctly with all sources acknowledged and included in a list of references.
You should write a maximum of 10,000 characters including spaces to set your proposed research in a context, identify the main problems in the literature and justify the topic of your research. Please make clear what you plan to contribute to the literature and outline the techniques you are going to use. This is a research proposal for a PhD and not for an individual paper so the agenda needs to be sufficiently broad.
Visit the Economics PhD for more information on the programme and entry requirements.