The Ph.D. in Industrial Relations and Human Resources (IRHR) is an interdisciplinary program designed for people who want to:

  • study the world of work in our dynamic global economy, including how employment relationships affect organizations, workers, and society;
  • work with leading scholars who are nationally and internationally recognized experts in a broad range of topics in industrial relations and human resources; and
  • become leading scholars themselves.

Students learn how to design, conduct, and publish rigorous research in scholarly journals such as Academy of Management Journal, Academy of Management Review, Industrial and Labor Relations Review, Industrial Relations, and Journal of Applied Psychology, among others. Students also develop their teaching skills by working as teaching assistants and teaching their own courses.

Our Goal

Our goal is to qualify students for employment as college or university faculty, or for other research positions. You can see where our alumni are employed and learn about their research interests and substantial accomplishments, along with the interests and achievements of our students and diverse and distinguished Ph.D. faculty.


The demand for college, university, and other postsecondary teachers is expected to be strong, according to the 10-year projections by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The starting salary for new professors is frequently over $100,000, often accompanied by summer and travel support. Most positions offer substantial flexibility in schedule and the ability to choose research topics. Our typical graduate is in a tenure-track job, providing the opportunity to earn tenure after 6 years based on one’s research, teaching, and service record. Our most recent graduates have tenure-track positions in top schools in our field such as Cornell, London School of Political Science and Economics, and University of Notre Dame.