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Being a Golden Hawk means more than just cheering on our (really good) varsity teams – it means being a student who cares about your community, who works hard in the classroom, and who takes advantage of all the learning opportunities that can happen outside the classroom, too.


The Marketing field in Laurier’s PhD in Management program offers you the opportunity to conduct research on contemporary topics of theoretical and managerial significance. Our areas of specialization include consumer behaviour, innovation, marketing strategy, brand management, and services marketing. We welcome applications from those with education and/or experience in business and marketing or a relevant field such as psychology and economics.

Our program centres on theory development, empirical analysis, and developing managerially relevant knowledge. It builds on core theories from marketing and other disciplines (including psychology, economics, and decision sciences). You will have the opportunity to acquire a broad range of methodological skills including experimental design, surveys, qualitative research, and quantitative modelling. Our focus is to hone your research skills both through course work and by actively collaborating with you in new or ongoing research projects.

Consumer Research Lab

The state-of-the-art Consumer Research Lab is equipped with 20 computer terminals, a projector, and software for controlled experimental studies and survey-based, online data collection. The lab also includes a small break-out room with a one-way mirror for focus groups, interviews, and other tasks relevant to research studies.

Program Structure

The program is structured to be completed in four years. In the first two years, you will complete 11 courses and write your comprehensive exams. Comprehensive exams are typically completed at the end of your second year. In addition, there are special topics seminars determined by your interests and available faculty.

In the third and fourth years of the program, you will propose and complete your dissertation. In order to develop and refine your research skills, you are expected to engage in research throughout the program. You will also complete a non-credit course on university teaching.

Course Offerings

BU800: Fundamentals of Behavioural Research

The goals of social sciences vary from discipline to discipline and from researcher to researcher. While these differences may exist, the key objective of the social sciences is to produce an understanding of human nature. When regularities and patterns in human behaviour are found, we not only document them but also try to understand the complex mechanisms that guide those behavioural patterns. It is a tough endeavour which requires exposure to, and appreciation of, a diversity of approaches which help to further knowledge of social behaviour. This course focuses on exploring the understanding of human behaviour via the scientific method.

BU801: Management Foundations

A historical perspective on various schools of management thought. Students will become familiar with the content and perspective of some of the most influential organization and management thinkers through an examination of management classics.

BU802: Research Methodology

An introduction to the methods and instruments of business research, including scientific method, research design, and measurement. Basic descriptive and inferential statistics will be covered.

BU812: Marketing Philosophy and Theory

This course provides a survey of the scholarly field of marketing. Students are exposed to the history of marketing thought and the development of key theories and concepts related to the role of marketing. Specifically, this course helps students to study major marketing schools of thought and research streams; understand fundamental issues involved in philosophy of science and its impact on marketing inquiry; develop scientific rigor in theory development and enhance research ability; develop a personal understanding of philosophy of marketing science; and, develop skills for critical review.

BU818: Qualitative Research Process

This course is designed to provide opportunities to develop specific qualitative research skills while gaining familiarity with theories, issues, and problems in qualitative research. Students will examine the relationships between the theories and purposes of qualitative and quantitative inquiry.

BU822: Marketing Strategy

This course provides an overview of marketing strategy and management. Marketing strategy focuses on the tools, concepts and processes that firms use to create competitive advantage through the creation of superior customer value. The course enables students to become familiar with and to develop an in-depth understanding of the concepts, models and paradigms that collectively form the foundation for marketing strategy. While scope and domain issues for the field continue to be debated, the literature broadly defines marketing strategy in terms of the planning and implementation of specific patterns of resource deployments to achieve marketing objectives in a target market. The ultimate goal of any marketing strategist is to achieve and maintain a strategic fit between the organization and its changing environment.

BU842: Consumer Behaviour

This seminar introduces students to key theoretical issues in consumer behaviour, provides them with an understanding of the use of various conceptual and empirical approaches to the study of consumer behaviour and enables strong critical thinking when reading academic work. The course includes topics in motivation, personality, self concept, attitude formation, memory, judgment, decision-making and other aspects of consumer behaviour theory.

BU852: Service and Relationship Marketing

This seminar provides students with exposure to theory, research issues, and readings in key areas of service and relationship marketing. These include (among other) brand loyalty, customer relationships, co-creation of service, service failure and recovery, and technology in service design/delivery. This topic draws upon the strong research foundations in the field to focus on challenges and opportunities relevant to service design, delivery and management, including relationship management, and the marketing discipline as a whole. This seminar covers major research topics and developments in the fields of interest, relevant to contemporary service and relationship marketing theory and practice.

BU862: Brand and Brand Communication

Students discuss and investigate issues surrounding the brand concept. These include historical and cultural issues in branding, brand personality, corporate branding, brand architecture, internal branding and organizational alignment. The course draws upon a strong research foundation in the area of branding to identify key trends, challenges and opportunities relevant to the marketing discipline. The seminar covers the major research fields and topics in this area as they relate to contemporary marketing theory and practice.

BU872: Special Topics in Marketing

This seminar provides students with exposure to specific topics in marketing as a way of stimulating both an understanding of and critical thinking about a topic. Topics may include advanced issues in managing customer relationships, brand management, supply chain and logistics issues, business-to-business marketing, network theory, international marketing, or innovation and entrepreneurship in marketing. This seminar provides students with exposure to theory, research issues and readings in 'hot topics' in marketing. As such, the seminar will reflect a select group of current research interests. It covers major research topics and developments in specific fields of interest that are relevant to contemporary marketing theory and practice. Since marketing is multi-disciplinary by nature, this seminar also integrates perspectives from other fields (psychology, sociology, entrepreneurship or international business).

MS700: Univariate and Multivariate Statistics

This course presents the conceptual and statistical foundations of the General Linear Model (GLM) and introduces a number of specific forms of the model.

PS800: Advanced Multivariate Methods

The main topic for this course is structural equation modelling (SEM), an extremely flexible data analytic technique that incorporates most other multivariate models as special cases. The course will address the two main components of SEM: causal modelling (or path analysis), and measurement models.

Faculty Supervisors

The Marketing faculty supervisors at Laurier are outstanding scholars doing cutting-edge research in various fields of marketing, including consumer behaviour, innovation-related marketing, services marketing, and marketing strategy.

We have two research chairs and faculty with doctoral degrees from leading institutions around the world, including Cambridge, Cornell, McGill, Michigan, and Toronto.

We also have faculty who hold editorial positions in premium marketing/business journals, and who have published in leading Marketing journals, such as Journal of Marketing, Journal of Marketing Research, Marketing Science, Journal of Consumer Psychology, Journal of Retailing, and Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science.

Nicole Coviello
Lazaridis Research Professor
Research Director, Lazaridis Institute for the Management of Technology Enterprises

Tripat Gill
Associate Professor
Canada Research Chair (Tier 2) in Market Insight and Innovation

Zhenfeng Ma
Associate Professor

Kalyani Menon
Associate Professor
Area Coordinator, Marketing

Grant Packard
Assistant Professor

Chatura Ranaweera
Associate Professor

Fang Wang
Associate Professor

Sarah J.S. Wilner
Assistant Professor
Laurier Chair in Brand Communication

Contact Us:

For more information about our Marketing area PhD, email Zhenfeng Ma or Tripat Gill.

For admissions-related inquiries, email sbephdmasters@wlu.ca.


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