Wageningen University & Research (WUR)

This PhD project is part of a large European research project focused on demonstrating novel value with innovative uses for plant protein crops that underpin new models of circularity and value chain resilience. Together with partners from across Europe, the goal is to investigate and promote concrete interventions across the supply chain to improve the profitability, circularity, availability, affordability, and acceptability of food/feed proteins from European origin.

This PhD project is based on the challenge, when scaling up, to determine the optimal level of centralisation vs decentralisation of the activities in the network, which is dependent on, amongst others, how side streams can be valorised, and waste can be processed. Centralised processing facilities require crops to be transported over often long distances whereas decentralised networks may result in lower transport cost and environmental impact, particularly for items where the processed product is a fraction of the size of the original crop (e.g., protein concentrates). Using Operations Research techniques this project aims to develop blueprints of optimal network configurations, side stream valorisation options, on-farm (pre-)processing and production/logistics innovation, such that associated cropping systems are tailored to meet Farm-To-Fork 2030 goals. In this project, the successful applicant will also be active in other work packages to collect data and support the development of tools.

The research is embedded within the Operations Research and Logistics group at Wageningen University. The group consists of 25 academics focusing on operations and supply chain issues in food and bio-based supply chains. Within this scope, the core research areas are:

  • operations and supply chain performance analysis,
  • the strategic configuration of network structures,
  • the tactical and operational planning of material flows.

In addition to traditional efficiency goals, the research also aims to improve sustainability, product quality and safety, as well as health and nutrition. Current examples of research are the design and operation of circular supply chains, the management of disruptions in food supply chains, the connection between changing diets and sustainable supply chain design, the operations in omni-channel retail, the management of not-for-profit supply chains, and supply chain planning to minimize waste.

Do you want more information?
For more information about this research project and the PhD position, please contact Prof. Sander de Leeuw at [email protected].

For more information about the procedure, please contact Jeanine van ‘t Veer-Drost, Corporate recruiter via [email protected].

Do you want to apply?
You can apply directly using the apply button on the vacancy page on our website which will allow us to process your personal information with your approval.

This vacancy will be listed up to and including May 31, 2022. 

To apply for this job please visit www.connexys.nl.