The Doctoral Program Continues To Grow: 19 Doctoral Candidates From 9 Nations

On November 13, 2020, this year's inauguration and graduation ceremony for the doctoral program “Ethics and Responsible Leadership in Business” (ERL) took place.

 Six doctoral students were sent off: Sabine Wiesmüller (3rd cohort), Adrian Gombert (4th cohort), Benedikt Kirner (4th cohort), Nils Kruse (4th cohort), Raphael Ng (4th cohort) and Magdalena Wallkamm (4th cohort) have successfully completed the program, have already submitted their dissertations or are about to do so. Furthermore, the doctoral students of the 7th cohort were welcomed and officially introduced. Arlette Román Almánzar, Oleg Fedoseev, Emma van den Terrell, Taiwo Yusuff, Laurence Martel, Shayan Khan and Silvia Vázquez Sánchez will take part in the various courses, field projects and events of the ERL doctoral program and write their thesis over the next three years. The program‘s new cohort is also the most international: the seven doctoral students are from seven different nations. From now on, a total of 19 doctoral students from nine countries are doing research at the ERL doctoral program.

Due to the corona pandemic, the inauguration and graduation ceremony took place virtually for the first time. After an informal welcome event in the morning, the official celebration in the afternoon was followed by greetings from Dr. Martin von Broock (chairman of the WZGE board of directors), Dr. Katrin Schlecht (chairwoman of the Karl Schlecht Foundation and Co-Chair of the Advisory Board of the Doctoral College), Dietmar Kokott (former Senior Vice President BASF SE and Co-Chairman of the Advisory Board of the Doctoral College) and Dr. Richard Pott (Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Covestro AG and Chairman of the WZGE Board of Trustees).

Two talks with top-class guests enriched the day‘s program: Dr. Martin von Broock discussed with Barbara Lamprecht (Coordinator for Business and Human Rights Volkswagen Group) the importance of the transfer between science and practice, which is a special feature of the ERL doctoral program. Subsequently, Prof. Dr. Philipp Schreck and Dr. Julia Grimm, who did her doctorate at the ERL doctoral program and is now working as a PostDoc at the Judge Business School of Cambridge University, talks about the ups and downs of the PhD process.

The online event was complemented by numerous interactive elements: the new doctoral students got to know each other at a "speed dating", a virtual coffee break with randomly assigned breakout sessions enabled everyone to exchange ideas, and during the informal evening program, the doctoral students let the day end comfortably with a virtual pub quiz.