Marketing is an interdisciplinary field, concerned with the behavior of consumers, competitors and intermediaries, and the outcomes of their decisions as they relate to the performance of firms and brands. It relies considerably on fields such as psychology, economics, statistics and sociology to develop theory and methodology.

The PhD specialization in Marketing is designed to produce leaders in knowledge and scholarly research in the field, under the expert supervision of our Faculty. The program prepares PhD candidates to conduct cutting-edge research making significant contributions to the advancement of theory and practice in Marketing.

PhD candidates are expected to complete the program in five years. In the first two years of the program, PhD candidates are required to successfully complete a variety of courses that cover both substantive and methodological topics. The course selection depends on the candidate's research interests and background, subject to Faculty approval. The remainder of the program should be devoted to the completion of the PhD thesis. The content of the thesis should form the basis of research papers targeted for publication in leading marketing journals (Journal of Marketing, Journal of Marketing Research, Journal of Consumer Research, Marketing Science and Management Science).

Current Area Research Topics

  • Emotions in advertising and consumption
  • Advertising and Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC) effectiveness
  • Adoption of new products and innovation
  • Service design and management
  • Strategic marketing
  • International marketing
  • Branding and consumer choice
  • Pricing
  • Word-of-mouth communications
  • Experience-based decision making
  • Retailing
  • Corporate social responsibility
  • Marketing-Finance interface

Specialization Requirements

PhD candidates are required to complete a minimum of four courses in Marketing and two in a support field (see options below), offered both by our Faculty and other Faculties of either McGill or the joint program. In addition, they should complete at least 3 courses in research methodology/statistics and one pedagogy course.


Ashesh Mukherjee

Dr. Mukherjee's research interests are in the areas of marketing communication, word-of-mouth, online behavior, and pro-social behavior.

The following are examples of his ongoing research projects. Two projects on marketing communication investigating of the effect of limited-time and limited-quantity offers on consumer attitudes and behavior. A project on word-of-mouth examining the effect of anticipated firm interaction on the valence of word-of-mouth from consumers. A project on online behavior examining consumer evaluations of products and sellers in peer-to-peer markets.  Two projects on pro-social behavior examining the effects of others’ participation and belief in free will on charitable donations.

DaHee Han

Professor Han’s current research interests include emotion, coping and construal. She has been investigating how discrete emotions and contextual factors (e.g., message frames) influence persuasion via the activation of specific coping, how consumer coping and construal levels enhance health message effectiveness, and how construal levels and emotions affect consumer attitudes. Her research has been published in Journal of Consumer Research, Journal of Marketing Research, Journal of Consumer Psychology, and Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes.

Nathan Yang

Professor Yang conducts research in both quantitative marketing and empirical industrial organization, his current research themes revolve around the development of effective retail strategies: 

Retail Expansion: This line of work investigates strategies to grow a retail chain (e.g., fast food, convenience stores). In particular, this research studies

  1. the impact that mergers have on retail performance and efficiency,
  2. the strategic role of franchising, and
  3. the ways in which retailers can leverage informational spillovers from the presence of their competitors in geographic locations of uncertain profitability.

Customer Relationship Management: The current projects look into instruments to improve

  1. customer satisfaction/retention through employee engagement, and
  2. customer development/retention through social interactions in a large national weight loss program. 

Thomas Dotzel

Prof Dotzel’s research focuses on strategic aspects of service marketing and he is currently working on various projects in the following two research areas:

  • Service innovation: As economies in developed and developing countries are increasingly driven by services, the introduction of new services is becoming a critical issue for managers in both services- and goods-dominant firms. However, despite the well established differences between goods and services, prior research on innovation has primarily focused on goods, leaving open important research questions relating to service innovation. Prof. Dotzel’s research in this area examines both drivers and outcomes of different types of service innovations. For example, by combining secondary data sources he seeks answering the question how business-to-business (b2b) service innovations affect firm value and firm risk and how these effects are different for business to consumer (b2c) service innovations.
  • Service quality: In this research stream Prof. Dotzel examines how various types of service quality improvements (e.g., longer store hours or improved return policies) in a multichannel retail setting affect customer purchase behavior across all channels. Furthermore, he is interested in how these effects vary among different customer segments. By applying econometric models to secondary data sets, he seeks to offer managerial insights into the question what type of service quality improvements are most beneficial for multichannel retailers (or potentially not beneficial at all).  


  • Models in Consumer Research
  • Advances in Consumer Behavior
  • Advances in Service Marketing
  • Automatic Consumer Behavior
  • Topics in Marketing Strategy

Typical Support Fields

  • Economics
  • Psychology
  • Industrial Organization
  • Statistics
  • Behavioral Science


  • PhD Program Entrance Fellowships
  • Teaching and/or Research Assistantships
  • Graduate Faculty Research Fellowships