New PhD Program

KLU and Leuphana University of Lüneburg Now Offer a Joint PhD Program

Kühne Logistics University (KLU) is kicking off a close collaboration with Leuphana University of Lüneburg. All KLU PhD candidates can now take their final examination at the university to the south of Hamburg. The presidents of both universities signed a cooperation agreement to this effect in May.

“Because KLU does not have the right to grant PhD degrees itself yet, we are not able to examine the PhD candidates here,” explained Sönke Albers, Professor of Marketing and the former Dean of Research at KLU. This is why the PhD degree can only be conferred with the help of a cooperating university. Until now, various different universities have partnered with KLU for specific cases. Now that Leuphana has been declared the sole partner, all new PhD candidates will be working within a standardized structure.

The plan is for the PhD candidates coming from KLU to enroll in a four-year program. In the first two years, the candidates will attend courses intended to help them improve their methodology. At the same time, they will begin their research. They can use the last two years to complete their dissertations.

“Leuphana University of Lüneburg looks forward to initiating a structured PhD program as a result of the cooperation with KLU,” said Albers. Until now, the PhD program at Leuphana has only been partially structured. However, as the marketing professor explains: “Today’s PhD candidates do not write academic books. Their dissertations typically consist of the publication of several papers. We want the articles to appear in the best professional journals in the world, so we support our PhDs in using the appropriate methodology.”

Albers and Vice President Markus Reihlen of Leuphana are working out the details of the cooperation. As far as Albers is concerned, Leuphana is the ideal partner – at the end of the 1980s, he taught there. After moving on, Albers followed the university’s further development with great interest. “Under its current president, Sascha Spoun, Leuphana has successfully implemented many innovative ideas,” Albers said.

KLU has applied for the right to grant PhD degrees in 2017, but the two universities plan to continue their cooperation for the years to come in any case.