Similar to this question Both grandmaster and PhD/doctorate but for at least WGM (WGM, female IM, female GM, etc)

Among woman grandmasters, who have PhDs/doctorates?


  1. standard WGM only eg no International Correspondence Chess WGM

  2. no honourary PhDs/doctorates

  3. maybe kind of a cheat but I'll allow JD/MD (and LLB to the extent that LLB=JD) i.e. doesn't have to be Doctor of Juridical Science/Doctor of Medical Sciences. Also the other stuff here eg doctor of education or doctor of engineering, just no honourary.


1 Answer 1


What I got so far:


  1. Hou Yifan (SRZLY?) (UNSURE): same with the Robert Byrne thing as to what 'professor' means (i mean come on phd, really? i don't think so)

  2. Kateřina Němcová - PhD in progress

  3. 5-time and current (as of Oct2021) British women's chess champion Harriet Hunt - PhD and Research Fellowship at Cambridge, specialising in archaeogenetics

  4. Jana Krivec - psychology (not sure if PhD or PsyD)

  5. Alisa Marić - PhD in economics.

Law (either JD/LLB or Doctor of Juridical Science)

  1. Xu Yuhua: LLB
  2. 9-time and current (as of Sep2021) British women's chess champion Jovanka Houska: LLB
  3. Natalia Pogonina: 'In 2008 Pogonina was studying for an MA in law at the Saratov State Academy of Law.'

Medicine (either MD or Doctor of Medical Sciences)

  1. Jana Bellin - probably just MD
  • 1
    I'm not convinced Robert Byrne has more than a masters degree from Indiana University. Commented Dec 9, 2021 at 15:50
  • It looks like Hou Yifan was awarded a Rhode's scholarship to study for a Master's of Public Policy at Oxford. I don't see anything about any scholarship activity between that and her professorship at Shenzhen University, so I assume that she has at most a Master's degree (I'm not sure if she finished her program at Oxford). Regardless, even if it isn't a PhD, it looks like she's had an impressive academic career outside of chess.
    – Nelson O
    Commented Sep 25, 2023 at 15:44

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