School of Economics and Finance Doctor of Philosophy Programme (Research Postgraduate Programme)
The research postgraduate programme of the School is committed to developing outstanding professionals and consultants in economics and finance, who will contribute creatively and substantively to meeting challenges faced by the academic world and different industries into the twenty-first century. The programme is designed for individuals who wish to pursue a career in teaching, research and consulting.
The School has dedicated Faculty, with diverse teaching and research interests, and the facilities to supervise and support research students in a wide range of field of studies. Candidates will conduct research work under the supervision of at least one teaching staff of our School.
Mode of study and period of study
The 4-year Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) programmes are offered on a full-time basis; the period of study is 48 months. Candidates whose applications are accepted shall be subject to a probationary period of 24 months. By the end of the probationary period, the candidates must demonstrate capability on research, submit a detailed scheme of research and complete the required coursework for confirmation of candidature.
Once a PhD candidate has been admitted to our PhD programme with either economics or finance as his/her proposed field of study, the candidate is not allowed to change his/her field of study throughout the study period.
For the key dates of PhD candidature, please refer to
The coursework component of our programmes will provide students with basic knowledge of their fields and offer tools to prepare them for writing the thesis. All 4-year PhD students admitted after September 1, 2013 are required to satisfactorily complete 4 Graduate School core courses (http://www.gradsch.hku.hk/gradsch/current-students/coursework-information/coursework-enrolment/general-coursework-requirement), 12 compulsory courses (http://www.gradsch.hku.hk/gradsch/page/detail/492#3), and 1 elective course offered by the School (course list from SEF), other departments at HKU, and/or local universities (http://www.gradsch.hku.hk/gradsch/current-students/coursework-information/coursework-enrolment/cross-institutional-course-enrolment).
It is required by the University that a 4-year PhD student shall satisfactorily complete all the Graduate School courses and at least 50% of the remaining prescribed coursework by the end of the probationary period. Students are however advised to complete all the courses during the probationary period so that they can concentrate on their research and thesis writing in the remaining part of their period of study. In any case, the requisite coursework requirements must be fulfilled before submission of thesis.
Thesis and oral examination
The final research of a PhD candidate must be presented in the form of a thesis for which there must be an oral examination.
Selected full-time PhD students with good Bachelor's degree may be awarded postgraduate scholarship (http://www.gradsch.hku.hk/gradsch/prospective-students/scholarship-funding-and-fees#3).
Conference grants and travel grants for PhD students
All research students are strongly encouraged to apply for either a conference grant or a travel grant during his/her studies to attend academic conference or to undertake international exchange activities. Regulations and application forms are available at http://www.rss.hku.hk/fund/travel.
Graduation requirements for PhD students
- completed all coursework requirement;
- delivered a research seminar to teachers and research students of the School of Economics and Finance before submission of thesis;
- submitted a thesis and took an oral examination (if required) to the satisfaction of the examiners;
- completed duties assigned by the School as required by the Postgraduate Scholarship;
- compiled with the regulations and procedures for PhD
Other useful links
Information for current RPG students
Frequently asked questions on the study period, transfer of candidature, leave of absence,
course work, progress monitoring, and thesis examination:
Placements of our graduates in the past five years
- Central University of Finance and Economics
- Chinese University of Hong Kong
- Hong Kong Baptist University
- Hong Kong Polytechnic University
- Lingnan University
- Monash University
- Shanghai Advanced Institute of Finance
- Southwestern University of Finance and Economics
- Sun Yat-sen University
- United International College
- University of International Business and Economics
- University of Warwick
- Wuhan University
Government and Business Sectors
- Bank of China (Hong Kong) Ltd
- Bank of Communications
- China International Capital Corp Ltd
- China Merchants Capital Investment Co Ltd
- China Merchants Securities (HK) Co Ltd
- China Minsheng Bank
- China Securities Regulatory Commission
- CITIC Dameng Investment Limited
- Goldman Sachs
- Investlab Technology
- PetroChina Company Ltd
- Shanghai Institute of Foreign Trade
- The People’s Bank of China