Business woman sitting in front of computerWalden’s online learning program for those seeking a doctorate in business offers 16 specializations. While this might seem overwhelming, there are a few things you can consider to make your choice easier.

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  • Give thought to your aspirations, passions, and career goals and look for a specialization that aligns with them.

  • Think about research topics you might wish to consider for your doctoral study. The information you gain in your specialization courses can be leveraged as you complete your research.

  • Keep in mind that, if you don’t find the perfect fit for your choice of specialization, Walden’s flexible online DBA program also has a Self-Designed option in which you can combine courses from different specializations.

Below is a brief introduction to each specialization within Walden’s online DBA program to provide you with a better understanding of the differences between them.

Accounting: Enhance your knowledge of managerial accounting methods that are essential to your company’s bottom line and elevating your organization’s competitive position. Explore the principles and theories of managerial decision making, corporate governance, and employee performance evaluation from domestic and global business perspectives.

Energy Management: Assist business leaders analyze the impact of energy production, distribution, and associated risks. Explore how energy production and distribution have evolved into a global market, as well as the natural and man-made risks involved with this business. Use seminar research and discussions to examine the intersection of global energy demands with emerging technologies. Develop the skills necessary to help guide the future of energy production and distribution in light of the associated risks.

Entrepreneurship: Explore the entrepreneurial concepts and processes that are found in both established companies and start-ups. Build your entrepreneurial skills and knowledge by identifying market opportunities, managing risk and change, encouraging innovation, raising capital, and more.

Finance: Gain the finance tools that help managers maximize their firm’s value, including valuation, capital budgeting and structure, working capital management, multinational concepts, and Capital Asset Pricing Model (CAPM). You will also have the opportunity to explore advanced theories such as option pricing, derivatives, and hedging.

Global Supply Chain Management: Understand how products and services move from the concept phase to the deliverable phase while learning the systems required to identify sources of personnel and material and how to ensure that supply chains conform to the highest global standards. In addition, you will explore new ways of applying technology to help cut costs, increase customer satisfaction, and find new business opportunities.

Healthcare Management: Expand your core business management skills in the healthcare field by learning to apply managerial decision-making skills to healthcare policy and economics. Explore the private and public policy development process and understand its effect on delivery systems and the continuum of health services.

Homeland Security: This specialization is designed for leaders in the private and public sectors interested in analyzing homeland security and crisis planning from a business perspective. Explore how the field of homeland security has evolved, as well as the global implications it has on how an organization operates, internally and externally. From the principles of global terrorism to risk-based analysis strategies and emerging organizational and policy challenges, gain the insight and knowledge you need to confidently address organizational security issues, mitigate risk, and protect business infrastructure through critical thinking and applied research.

Human Resource Management: Be prepared with the theoretical knowledge, industry insights, and capabilities necessary to be an authoritative voice in this field, whether you’re looking to pursue executive leadership, teaching, or research. Coursework examines contemporary organizational issues, such as succession planning for the organization’s long-term success, creating and managing external strategic partnerships, and HR planning for the organization’s strategic business direction.

Information Systems Management: Address the management challenges facing technology-based businesses as you gain the knowledge and skills to help align business needs with technological solutions, identify new applications for technology, and leverage technological solutions in order to enhance your organization’s competitive position in the marketplace. Examine how technological solutions can be affected in a global environment.

International Business: Gain the skills necessary to manage and lead a spectrum of workers, managers, and teams in a global marketplace. You will also examine the financial implications of conducting business internationally, including how capital investment is undertaken globally and how financial markets and global trade influence investment opportunities. Gain an overview of the effect the world’s financial institutions—such as The World Bank Group, International Monetary Fund, and World Trade Organization (WTO)—have on trade, new markets, and exchange and interest rates.

Leadership: Explore new frameworks and perspectives that will help you to lead and manage change effectively while also investigating a variety of current leadership principles and practices to determine which work best in any given situation.

Marketing: Study key marketing concepts, including market segmentation, marketing channels, competitive intelligence, integrated marketing, product development and commercialization, and consumer behavior. Learn the skills and knowledge needed to succeed in an international marketplace, including leveraging strategies in global marketing and international pricing.

Project Management: This specialization focuses on the components of project-based strategic leadership and the organizational practices required to responsibly and ethically support an organization’s vision and growth. You will learn the necessary skills to deliver your organization’s strategic objectives through dynamic project portfolio management while studying the processes for successfully managing a complex portfolio of projects and analyzing opportunities for improved portfolio performance.

Social Impact Management: The ability to manage and improve an organization’s social impact is in high demand. Examine key issues in corporate responsibility, such as how to achieve greater transparency while protecting proprietary information, leverage social involvement in branding, improve operational efficiency through environmental initiatives, and strengthen stakeholder relationships.

Technology Entrepreneurship: Learn how to design the concepts, processes, and tools to increase the rate and extent of innovation in your company, thereby enhancing your company’s competitive edge. Discover new ways of applying technology to cut costs, increase customer satisfaction, and create new business opportunities.

Self-Designed: Create your own specialization based on your individual goals and interests in business administration. Choose seminars from the program’s other specializations under the guidance of a Walden faculty mentor.

When it comes to earning a doctoral degree from an online university, Walden’s Doctor of Business Administration, or DBA degree, is a great choice, regardless of which specialization you choose. Accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP), Walden’s online DBA degree explores some of the greatest challenges and opportunities facing business today.


Walden’s BS in Business Administration, Master of Business Administration (MBA), Doctor of Business Administration (DBA), and PhD in Management programs are accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP). The MS in Accounting and BS in Accounting programs are also accredited by the ACBSP and have earned the organization’s Specialized Accounting Accreditation.

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