PhD 'Optimizing the sustainability of freight transportation through a digital platform: investigating the role of information sharing in logistics'

PhD 'Optimizing the sustainability of freight transportation through a digital platform: investigating the role of information sharing in logistics'

Published Deadline Location
24 Apr 27 May Wageningen

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Job description

Did you know that CO2 emissions by freight transportation can be reduced by better matching supply and demand, and by using multiple transportation modes?
Are you curious how information sharing in digital platforms can help achieve CO2 emission reductions while better matching supply and demand?

Are you enthusiastic about making such a platform effective by using mathematical modelling and simulation together with a consortium of universities and industrial partners? Then this PhD position might be what you have been looking for.
The Operations Research and Logistics group of Wageningen University is hiring a PhD candidate (4 years, full-time employment) to work on the project Freight Mobility as a Service (FMaaS). In FMaaS, seven universities in The Netherlands and Belgium are collaborating with public and private partners on designing a digital platform to support making Cargo Logistics more sustainable (See project lead website). As a PhD candidate, you will create mathematical and simulation models and generate insights into the value of information sharing for platform users and other stakeholders of the platform.
By means of quantitative modelling (mathematics and simulation) you will answer questions like what information should be shared to match supply and demand, what is the value of providing such information for the data provider and other stakeholders, and how gradual information sharing affects the effectiveness and growth of the platform? The core objective is to distinguish the benefits of information sharing for the entire network, the platform itself, and individual users. We also want to investigate what is the minimum level of information sharing for the viability of the platform. Given their inherent complexity, we specifically aim to investigate information sharing in agricultural and fresh food supply chains.

This investigation is crucial to understand how participation by relevant actors can enhance platform functionality and success. Overall, the project aims to provide comprehensive insights into the optimal information-sharing strategies that can drive the platform toward achieving its full potential in the logistics and supply chain management sector.

Results are shared with partners (researchers and practitioners) in the project, and presented at national and international conferences. You will publish your models and results in scientific journals.
The research is embedded in the Operations Research and Logistics group, which is led by Prof. Dr. ir. Sander de Leeuw. Daily supervision will be done by Dr. Rene Haijema and Dr. Rodrigo Romero-Silva.


Wageningen University & Research


You have
  • A university degree (MSc) in a discipline relevant to the PhD project (e.g., operations research, operations management, industrial engineering, computer science);
  • Experience with quantitative modelling methods (e.g., mathematical programming, simulation) and related software and programming languages;
  • Affinity to analytical thinking to provide insights based on experimentation with mathematical modelling;
  • Ability to work independently;
  • Interest in following additional training and courses to support your career and your contribution to the project;
  • A collaborative mindset and an interest in working together with people from other universities and industry.

For this position, your command of the English language is expected to be at C1 level. Sometimes it is necessary to submit an internationally recognized Certificate of Proficiency in the English Language. More information can be found here

Conditions of employment

Wageningen University & Research offers excellent terms of employment. A few highlights from our Collective Labour Agreement include:
  • Partially paid parental leave;
  • working hours that can be discussed and arranged so that they allow for the best possible work-life balance;
  • the option to accrue additional compensation / holiday hours by working more, up to 40 hours per week;
  • there is a strong focus on vitality and you can make use of the sports facilities available on campus for a small fee;
  • a fixed December bonus of 8.3%;
  • excellent pension scheme.

In addition to these first-rate employee benefits, you will receive a fully funded PhD position and you will be offered a course program tailored to your needs and the research team.

The gross salary for the first year is € 2.770 - per month rising to € 3.539,- in the fourth year in according to the Collective Labour Agreements for Dutch Universities (CAO-NU) (scale P). This is based on a full-time working week of 38 hours. We offer a temporary contract for 18 months which will be extended for the duration of the project if you perform well.

There are plenty of options for personal initiative in a learning environment, and we provide excellent training opportunities. We are offering a unique position in an international environment with a pleasant and open working atmosphere.

You are going to work at the greenest and most innovative campus in Holland, and at a university that has been chosen as the “Best University” in the Netherlands for the 19th consecutive time.


Wageningen University & Research

Wageningen University & Research
The mission of Wageningen University & Research is “To explore the potential of nature to improve the quality of life”. Under the banner Wageningen University & Research, Wageningen University and the specialised research institutes of the Wageningen Research Foundation have joined forces in contributing to finding solutions to important questions in the domain of healthy food and living environment. With its roughly 30 branches, 7,600 employees (6,700 fte) and 13,100 students and over 150,000 participants to WUR’s Life Long Learning, Wageningen University & Research is one of the leading organisations in its domain. The unique Wageningen approach lies in its integrated approach to issues and the collaboration between different disciplines.

Read the 5 reasons why your future colleagues enjoy working at WUR and watch the video below to get an idea of our green campus!

Operationele Research en Logistiek
The group consists of 25 academics (staff and PhD candidates) 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, and
  • the tactical and operational planning of material flows.

Our research aims to improve sustainability, product quality and safety, resilience, as well as health and nutrition, besides the traditional focus on efficiency. Current examples of research are the design and operation of circular supply chains, the management of risks and disruptions in supply chains, the development of sustainable supply chain designs for healthy diets, the operations in omni-channel retail, the management of not-for-profit supply chains, and supply chain planning to minimize waste.

We will recruit for the vacancy ourselves, so no employment agencies please. However, sharing in your network is appreciated.


  • PhD
  • Behaviour and society
  • max. 38 hours per week
  • €2770—€3539 per month
  • University graduate
  • P1501408-1


Wageningen University & Research

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Droevendaalsesteeg, 6708 PB, Wageningen

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