Doctoral Consortium for Early Students


The Online Doctoral Consortium program for early PhD students, to be held across two days from 8am–11am MDT on August 12 and 13, 2020, seeks to help Information Systems doctoral students who are about to start their PhD or who are in the first and second years of their doctoral studies (i.e., prior to comprehensive exams and advancement to candidacy at the time of application to the Doctoral Consortium) to become introduced to the professorate and to manage the path toward a sound research publication pipeline and a dissertation that will make a material contribution to the body of knowledge. The consortium has three primary objectives:

  1. Provide virtual networking opportunities for students with peers and faculty
  2. Help students strategize about and focus on their research, teaching and career plans
  3. Prepare students for the dissertation process and advancement to candidacy.

The program includes keynotes, panels, and breakout sessions to discuss research and issues relevant to the early stages of a doctoral program. Panels focus on developing a solid research pipeline, preparing for the comprehensive exam, and transitioning to the dissertation process. In breakout sessions after each panel, small groups of students will discuss the panel topic as it relates to their research aspirations with their faculty mentors and fellow students. The intent is for students to apply the panel topic to their personal research and doctoral program goals, with input from faculty mentors and peers.

Participant Criteria

Students wishing to participate in the Doctoral Consortium for early students program at AMCIS 2020 should:

  1. Be formally admitted to an Information Systems (or related discipline) doctoral program; this Doctoral Consortium is also open to prospective doctoral students who are starting their program in 2020.
  2. Have yet to sit for and successfully complete a formal comprehensive examination and have yet to be advanced to candidacy and matriculating at the dissertation stage of a doctoral program as of the application deadline.
  3. Advanced students who have already completed their comprehensive exams and/or advanced to candidacy as of the application deadline are encouraged to participate in the Senior Doctoral Consortium.

Application Process

Doctoral consortium for early students co-chairs will review each application. The review process emphasizes applicants’ research plans, accomplishments, and potential. Students may apply to the Doctoral Consortium for early students in each year in which they meet the criteria set forth above. Those who have completed their comprehensive exam and/or advanced to candidacy as of the application deadline may apply to the Senior Doctoral Consortium. Multiple students may apply from one school. Diversity of applicants, institutions and countries will be considered in selecting the AMCIS 2020 Doctoral Consortium cohort. Priority will be given to students studying at universities in the AIS Americas region although students from other AIS regions will be included if space is available.

Collate the following materials in one integrated PDF document:

  • Cover sheet (no more than one page) with your name, address, email, year in which you started your doctoral program and a brief (one paragraph) description of your research interests and motivation for applying to the Doctoral Consortium for early students.
  • Letter of recommendation from your faculty advisor or a major professor
  • Curriculum vita

Submit the integrated PDF document via email to by Friday, June 12, 2020.



8am–8:05am Welcome
8:05am–8:35am: Keynote by Arun Rai, Georgia State University
8:35am–8:50am: Keynote Q&A
8:50am–9am Break
9am–10am: Mentoring session
10am–10:10am Break
10:10am–10:40am Panel discussion on work–life balance
10:40–11:10am Panel Q&A


8am–8:05am Welcome
8:05am–8:35am: Keynote by Elena Karahanna, University of Georgia
8:35am–8:50am: Keynote Q&A
8:50am–9am Break
9am–10am: Mentoring session
10am–10:10am Break
10:10am–10:40am Panel discussion on navigating the job market
10:40–11:10am Panel Q&A


Work–life Balance panelists

Sulin Ba, University of Connecticut

Dennis Galletta, University of Pittsburgh

Beibei Li, Carnegie Mellon University

Joe Valacich, University of Arizona

Navigating the Job Market panelists

Mark Keith, Brigham Young University

Jingjing Li, University of Virginia

Heshan Sun, University of Oklahoma

Ryan Wright, University of Virginia

Mentors for Doctoral Consortium for Early Students

Alex Durcikova, University of Oklahoma

Kevin Hong, University of Houston

George Marakas, Florida International University

Sunil Wattal, Temple University

Mentors for Doctoral Consortium for Advanced Students

Ahmed Abbasi, University of Notre Dame

Xiao Fang, University of Delaware

Paul Lowry, Virginia Tech

Greg Moody, University of Nevada, Las Vegas

Ning Nan, University of British Columbia

Gautam Pant, University of Iowa

Ali Tafti, University of Illinois at Chicago

Yong Tan, University of Washington

Kang Zhao, University of Iowa

Eric Zheng, University of Texas at Dallas