PhD Program Overview

The PhD program in Managerial Economics & Strategy (MECS), which spans two departments at the Kellogg School and draws on several others, emphasizes the use of mathematical models and analytic reasoning to solve theoretical and empirical problems in economics and management. It should appeal to those interested in economic models of individual decision makers and firms and to students with an aptitude for analytical thinking, mathematical modeling and formal analysis. A distinctive feature of the program is its focus on methods and insights drawn from microeconomic theory, the theory of the firm and game theory. The program is small and highly selective. It prepares students for academic research careers in economics, economics-based strategy, operations management and formal political theory. Students typically find jobs in either economics departments or economics-based departments in business schools.

The program is offered jointly by the departments of Managerial Economics & Decision Sciences (MEDS) and Strategy. These departments are widely recognized as two of the outstanding intellectual centers of their types in the world. The MEDS faculty consists of economic theorists, game and decision theorists, operations researchers and formal political theorists with broad research interests that include the nature and impact of strategic behavior in competitive environments, dynamic economic models, the role of time and uncertainty in economic decision making, the theory of auctions, and more. The Strategy faculty consists of applied microeconomists whose interests include the industrial organization of healthcare, law and economics, pricing strategies, regulation and the economics of organizations. In addition to the faculty of our two departments, many faculty from the Northwestern department of economics (which is in the same building as the Kellogg School), particularly those in the areas of economic theory and industrial organization, are also actively involved in teaching and advising our doctoral students.