From student to teacher


The Oxford Saïd DPhils returning as faculty members to deliver excellent teaching to a new generation of students

At Oxford Saïd, delivering impactful research is an integral part of what we do, with faculty excellence paramount to our ability to attract the brightest and best students to the School. 

Nurturing our research community begins with accepting doctoral candidates for our DPhil in Finance and DPhil in Management. Doctoral students admitted to our programmes are fully funded for their four-years of study, with scholarships offered by the Saïd Business School Foundation, Eni, HEC Montréal, the Academic Futures programme, and from external funders.

The DPhil programmes at Oxford Saïd enable our candidates to engage with internationally renowned faculty, both in the intellectual community at Saïd Business School and within the wider University and, as both a student and a junior research colleague, provide opportunities to gain teaching and research assistant experience.

On completion of their doctoral programme, our alumni go off to exemplary institutions around the globe. Some, however, choose to stay on at, or return to, Saïd Business School. Members of our current faculty who took their DPhil at Oxford Saïd include Michael Gill, Associate Professor in Organisation Studies, Michael Smets, Professor of Management, and Mary Johnstone-Louis, Senior Fellow in Management Practice.


Michael Gill’s research focuses on the experience of modern work – the causes and consequences of individuals’ suffering in the workplace and how organisations can support or threaten workers’ mental health. Michael teaches across undergraduate programmes, the MBA, and open and custom executive education programmes. He has been recognised by Poets & Quants in both their ‘Favourite Professors of the MBA class of 2022 andTop 40 MBA professors under 40’, and by the University of Oxford Social Sciences division for teaching excellence.


Michael Smets’ research focus is on the internationalisation, innovation, and regulation of professional service firms. His work has been covered widely by the press, in outlets such as the Financial Times, and published in academic journals such as the Academy of Management Journal. Michael teaches modules on strategic management, innovation and business development on custom executive education programmes, as well as on the Oxford Executive Diploma in AI for Business.


Newly promoted to Senior Fellow, Mary Johnstone-Louis’ research explores how business affects society, and how leaders build strategy around the public good. Mary served as Founding Programme Director of The Ownership Project and focuses on sustainability, with her co-authored volume on sustainability leadership slated for publication in 2023.

The cyclical nature of DPhil students, who were funded by scholarships, returning to Oxford Saïd as members of our academic community is heartening to see. Having had a positive experience themselves, they’re able to play their part in generating internationally renowned research that attracts the brightest students to the School, and then in delivering excellent teaching to this new generation.