University of Sydney - PhD in Supply Chain Management

Post date: Jan 14, 2015 12:41:15 PM



Closing Date: 28 February 2015

The University of Sydney Business School is regarded as a leader in the region, with an outstanding reputation for the quality of its research across a wide range of academic disciplines. The School enjoys considerable national and international research standing and is recognised as one of the leading schools contributing to business practice, policy and regulation both nationally and internationally.

The Institute of Transport and Logistics Studies (ITLS) within the University of Sydney Business School undertakes graduate teaching, management development programs, grant and contract research and development in transport, infrastructure, logistics, and supply chain management. It is internationally recognised for its research and education programs. The transportation and logistics research in the Business School received the highest possible ranking of "well above world standard" in the latest Australian Government's research assessment exercise (Excellence for Research Australia). The ITLS is part of Australia's Key Centre of Excellence in Transport Research and Education and celebrates its 23rd year in 2014. Through the establishment of the key centre and a memorandum of understanding signed between the University of Sydney and the University of Johannesburg, ITLS is an international collaboration at three nodes: ITLS Sydney, ITS Monash (Melbourne) and ITLS Africa.

The food industry is important for the Australian economy with 15% of the Australian workforce being involved in food production and food exports of $30.5 billion annually. The National Food Plan White Paper states: "Our vision for Australia's food system is a sustainable, globally competitive, resilient food supply supporting access to nutritious and affordable food". To make this a reality (i.e. to grow Australia's food industry and make it more globally competitive), the design and management of safe, sustainable, and cost-effective food supply chains will be vital. The ARC Training Centre for Food and Beverage Supply Chain Optimisation will train the next generation of multidisciplinary researchers capable of designing and managing these supply chains. The University of Sydney in collaboration with the University of Newcastle is establishing this centre in partnership with Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), Georgia Institute of Technology, NSW Department of Primary Industries, Coca-Cola Amatil Australia, SunRice, the Batlow Fruit Co-operative, and Sanitarium Health and Wellbeing.

We are looking for a PhD student to join our team and work on supply chain design and management projects in close collaboration with our industry partners. Special focus of these projects will be on developing decision tools and optimisation models for designing efficient, resilient, and sustainable supply chains in food and beverage industry. Thus, supply chain risk and sustainability are the two primary areas of research focus.

The successful candidate will:

  • work in a team environment with academic staff, PhD students and industry partners;

  • spend significant time with partner organisations to collect the related data;

  • develop mathematical optimisation models and solution algorithms;

  • analyse and evaluate numerical results;

  • develop decision tools and software packages for use by industry partners;

  • participate in Centre workshops and related industry seminars; and

  • publish research findings in reputable journals and present in national and international conferences


  • Undergraduate degree with an Australian university First class Honours or equivalent, specialising in supply chain management, operations management/research, applied mathematics, industrial engineering, or a relevant discipline OR Masters degree with a 25% research thesis component in the proposed field of study from a recognised University; completed no more than 5 years ago.

  • Applicants must meet the following English language requirements: IELTS 7.0 (with a minimum of 6.5 in each band) OR TOEFL 600+ (e at 4.5+) or CBT 250+ (essay 4.5+) or IBT 100+ (writing band 23 and no band below 22); if a degree has been completed within the last 5 years and was taught, assessed and examined in English there is no need to provide an IELTS or TOEFL score.

  • Adequate knowledge and experience of mathematical optimisation modelling (linear and nonlinear programming), and algorithmic approaches such as heuristic and meta-heuristic solution techniques are required.

  • Applicants should also have good written and verbal communication skills and the ability to work both independently and as part of research team.

  • Ability to code and solve optimisation problems using standard software packages (such as CPLEX, Lingo, Lindo, and GAMS) and statistical data analysis skills would be of benefit for the position.

Amount awarded:

The scholarship is valued at $29,844 per annum (tax exempt) and may be renewed for up to three years, subject to satisfactory progress. Successful domestic students will receive an additional bonus stipend of $10,156 per annum and successful international students will have their tuition fees waived. All scholarship holders will also receive a $1,500 per annum travel allowance to attend national and international conferences during the scholarship period.

Application guide:

Further information can be obtained from:

Associate Professor Behnam Fahimnia

Applicants should initially contact Associate Professor Behnam Fahimnia at the above email address attaching a curriculum vitae, a copy of all academic transcript and grading scales (including for current courses), and the names and contact details of at least two referees.

Please note: Potential candidates need to separately apply for admission to the Business School's research program. For more information please visit:

Closing date: 28 February 2015 (11.30pm Sydney time)

Dr Behnam Fahimnia

Associate Professor and Director of Logistics and Supply Chain Management Programs

Institute of Transport and Logistics Studies | The University of Sydney Business School

Chief Investigator, ARC Centre for Food and Beverage Supply Chain Optimisation


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