Cranfield School of Management

The Cranfield Executive DBA

Cranfield's Executive Doctorate (DBA) is the highest-level business qualification that can be attained. The programme enables senior managers to conduct valuable doctoral-level research on a part-time basis, over four-six years, whilst remaining employed.

This unique, research-based, practice-driven programme provides a route to a doctorate level qualification that enables participants to develop leading-edge thinking, through use of the latest research tools and techniques. The programme is both rigorous and relevant, making it the ideal choice for developing both in-depth knowledge and analytical skills, whilst developing solutions to business issues at the same time. The programme allows individuals to undertake research that will have a real impact on practice, while also transforming the way that they personally approach decision-making.

Aimed at senior practitioners, policy-makers and consultants who want to be thought leaders in their organisations and wider occupations, it is one of only a few DBA's worldwide holding Association of MBAs (AMBA) accreditation.

Candidates are a highly diverse group of professionals from a variety of nationalities, industries, cultures and backgrounds. As well as the networking and learning opportunities offered by the programme, participants will benefit from the quality of study facilities, supervisory expertise, alumni networks and the international research perspective offered by Cranfield.

The Executive Doctorate (DBA) is cohort based - meaning you join a diverse, carefully selected group of students from around the world for the taught modules held at Cranfield and stay networked with them throughout the programme and beyond. At Cranfield, we support you in every way to maximise your chances of successfully completing the programme.

As the research is likely to be thematic, rather than discipline-based, you are supported by a panel of faculty members rather than by a single supervisor. This ensures you will receive outstanding support in your studies.

Teaching ModePart Time
AccreditationsAMBA AACSB EQUIS
Tuition Fees

Home/EU student Overseas student

DBA Part-time - £56,000 (4 years) * DBA Part-time - £56,000 (4 years) *

* This is the total fee payable with a structured payment plan as follows; years 1 and 2 £17,000, years 3 and 4 £11,000, years 5 and 6 £6,600 (where appropriate).

* A 10% discount on the International Executive Doctorate (DBA) course fee is available to all Cranfield Masters Alumni.

  • Year 1 is payable on or before the first day of registration. Year 2 onwards are invoiced annually.
  • The fees apply to all Home/EU/Overseas students. All students pay the tuition fee set annually by the University for the duration of their course (which may be raised year on year) unless otherwise set out in a schedule at the outset of the course.
  • Payments can be made by cheque or Visa/Mastercard or guarantee of payment from a sponsoring organisation. Credit Card payments incur a 3% charge and instalments may incur an 8% surcharge.
  • The University reserves the right to amend fees without notice.


The majority of students obtain sponsorship from their employer. The nature of this sponsorship differs widely from company to company - from full payment of tuition fees to a small contribution to the overall costs.

It is important to ensure that the precise conditions of any employer sponsorship cover the entire duration of the course, and the expectations of all involved, are clearly understood at the outset.

Our fees include

  • Supervisory Support and Panel
  • Tuition during residential Cohort/Campus Weeks
  • Course materials and photocopying
  • Programme Handbook and Learning Portal
  • Library resources and database access
  • NVivo (Quals), SPSS (Quants) and Survey Software
  • Daily hot and cold lunch plus two evening meals during residential Cohort/Campus weeks
  • Researcher Business Cards
  • Dedicated Programme Manager, Cohort Leader and administrative support

DBA Alumni events

Additional costs include your travel and accommodation, however, our Cranfield Management Development Centre (CMDC) is on campus and available at a discounted rate. You should also have a laptop/tablet computer enabling internet and Portal access and will be required to purchase (approximately £300) books.

Length4 Years
Application Deadline

Application deadline date is 12 March