This page contains a (likely incomplete) list of all PhDs on the sci-fi MMOG EVE Online. The purpose of this page is to act as a resource for scholars interested in the academic study of EVE, and it is recommended you contact the authors directly if you wish to learn more about their ongoing research.

This page is maintained my Marcus Carter. If you wish to have your PhD added to this page, please contact him at

Ongoing PhDs

Marcus Carter – Treacherous Play in EVE Online – The University of Melbourne.

EVE Online is distinguished from other games in the MMOG genre by the condoned and pervasive occurrence of treacherous play – play involving deception and betrayal for in-game advantage. The inevitability of theft, bribery, scamming and dishonesty means that the number one rule in EVE is “DON’T TRUST ANYONE”, and this player-culture contributes to the game’s success. No research has previously examined this type of play in a context where it is expected and within the rules of the game. Through  three case studies examining scamming, EVE’s eSport and espionage, this thesis explores the practices, experiences and impacts of treacherous play and develops theory to account for its appeal. I conclude that treacherous play should be understood as a form of social player-versus-player combat in which social skills, rather than game skills, are the domain of competition. This legitimacy counters the deviant reputation this play style has in previous research and challenges assumptions about trust and social interactions in game play.

Completion 2014. Personal Webpage. Contact –

Oskar Milik – Protecting Face in Virtual Life: An Ethnographic Analysis of Identity Categories and Informal Systems of Social Control in Massively Multiplayer Online Worlds – University College Dublin.

Massively multiplayer online games (MMOG)s are a relatively new phenomenon for social interaction. As such, research of online virtual worlds has been a field of growing importance, as greater numbers of people partake in this new experience. Of particular interest is the way in which identity and social interactions are constructed and maintained due to the limited reference of offline world socialization. As the individual enters the virtual world with limited access to recognizable social structures, meanings need to be constructed in vivo. This research project uses participant observation and ethnomethodological methods in order to understand the different processes used by social actors in the process of creating and maintaining identity. Also, by analyzing action through dramaturgical perspectives, it describes the leadership and informal social control mechanisms encountered by individuals as they incorporate themselves into their new reality. Research is primarily performed on in-game interactions between players in the MMOGs World of Warcraft (Activision-Blizzard) and EVE Online (CCP Games). By participating in “hardcore” or serious goal-oriented organizations within the game, an emphasis is placed on players who create social structures with longer-term relationships and greater commitment, which creates more meaningful interactions between participants.

Completion 2015. Personal Webpage. Contact –

Completed PhDs