A PhD in Entrepreneurship remains relatively uncommon when compared with doctoral degrees in Marketing, Finance, or Organizational Behavior. The Ivy College of Business at Iowa State University in the US offers an Entrepreneurship specialization to doctoral candidates.

As for the Ivy Doctoral Program: “The entrepreneurship (ENT) specialization focuses on the fields of entrepreneurship, innovation, and technology, and is closely associated with the management specialization curriculum and faculty.” 

Entrepreneurship at Iowa State

Areas of Research in Entrepreneurship

The field of entrepreneurship research is vast. Each PhD program is likely to focus on a few areas within entrepreneurship. In the case of Management and Entrepreneurship at Iowa State, the faculty and PhD student pages indicate the following research areas:

  • Entrepreneurial Resourcefulness
  • Entrepreneurial Communication
  • Entrepreneurial Traits
  • Entrepreneur Stress Processes
  • Entrepreneurial Ecosystems
  • Corporate Entrepreneurship

This PhD program in entrepreneurship at Iowa State is relatively new. Nevertheless, the proposal to the Board of Regents, State of Iowa for this doctoral track is full of insights into the field:

The demand for PhD-trained faculty in entrepreneurship is expected to increase over the next several years.  Kauffman Foundation estimates that more than 5,000 entrepreneurship classes were offered by U.S. Universities with over 400,000 students enrolling in these classes in 2008, and this number is expected to grow significantly in the future.  Further, according to the Academy of Management (AOM) placement site, the number of job applicants listing entrepreneurship as a primary area of expertise decreased from 173 in 2010 to 129 in 2014.  This suggests that, while there is an increased need for PhDs trained in entrepreneurship, that need is not currently being met by faculty formally trained in entrepreneurship. There is also a strong market demand for Ph.D. degree candidates who have completed coursework in entrepreneurship as scholars from multiple functional areas have begun to teach and research entrepreneurial issues, e.g. entrepreneurial finance, international entrepreneurship.

At the university level too, Iowa State has adopted entrepreneurship and innovation as cornerstones of its mission. In fact, every student at the university can choose to minor in entrepreneurship!