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An experience from Russia - doctoral education at HHL - Leipzig Graduate School of Management

14.10.2009 - (idw) Handelshochschule Leipzig

Ekaterina Demidova (25) from Moscow (Russia) is currently enrolled in the Doctoral Program at the Chair of Economics and Information Systems lead by Professor Pierfrancesco La Mura, Ph.D. (Italy) at HHL - Leipzig Graduate School of Management. We spoke with her about her stay at HHL, her doctoral thesis as well as about the way she is covering her expenses while studying in Germany. What do you like best about your studies at HHL?

My choice of the Doctoral Program at HHL was not accidental. Before I joined the program, I had spent two semesters at HHL as an exchange student, coming from the Moscow International Higher Business School MIRBIS , and knew very well the school, its professors, programs of study, students and the quality of education. And the more I was finding out about the school the more I wanted to continue my studies and pursue my academic carrier here. HHL is a perfect place to study: It offers high-quality courses for students of all programs, a broad network to the academic and business world, provides a nice atmosphere for work and study, constant support and interaction with supervisors and receives international recognition. The Doctoral Program at HHL is well structured: During the three years students have to pass two obligatory courses and, depending on their research areas, they have to choose several selective courses to deepen the knowledge in the areas they are interested in. Moreover students have an opportunity to participate in two summer schools during their studies and in doctoral colloquiums and PhD research seminars they have the possibility to exchange their research ideas and findings with other doctoral students and professors what helps to enrich the research ideas.

What is your doctoral thesis about?

My research lies in the area of game theory, or to be more precise, I am interested in studying the mechanism of human communications which can be analyzed using the game-theoretical approach.
Such situations might not necessarily be cooperative but in particular I am interested in conflict situations, e.g. bargaining, debates and etc. In all these examples participants in order to make a decision should take into account each other's intentions and choices. In other words, one agent should consider how another one is thinking, which is in fact a description of strategic reasoning - the essence of game theory.

Do you receive any financial support while studying in Germany?

First of all I should mention that Leipzig is considered to be a city with one of the lowest living costs in Germany. I was lucky to get a position of research associate at the Chair of Economics and Information Systems at HHL, and that is how I cover my living in Leipzig. For my living costs and parts of my tuition fees during the first year I got a scholarship as an international student from the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), the application process was initiated and conducted by the Department of International Relations of HHL. Apart from that I receive a scholarship from the DAAD as a doctoral student at HHL.
Another advantage of acquiring an academic degree in Germany is tax benefits for students, which allow you to reclaim income tax at the end of the year.
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