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FindAPhD Featured PhD Programmes
FindAPhD Featured PhD Programmes

Security, privacy and sharing for supply chain collaboration (PhD in Business Studies - Logistics and Operations Management)

Cardiff Business School

Dr Vasco Sanchez Rodrigues , , Dr Xun (Paul) Wang Monday, May 31, 2021 Self-Funded PhD Students Only

About the Project

Modern supply chains are complex and involve many separate companies interacting with one another. Data generated as part of this process, e.g., production schedules, delivery routes, demand for a particular product, can be used to improve its various stages, and contribute to reducing resource waste, improving forecasting and planning by synchronizing upstream and downstream supply chains. The benefit of data sharing among supply chain actors can indeed help optimise the whole supply chain in a more holistic manner. However, datasets are unfortunately owned by mutually distrusting companies, and the sensitivity of the data makes the companies reluctant to be on broad with data sharing and collaboration. This represents a missed opportunity that keeps value locked within non-communicating silos. This project aims to bridge this gap by generating and applying appropriate statistical data anonymisation and obfuscation methods that remove sensitive information and retain data features that are useful for supply chain optimisation. The PhD candidate will become familiar with both the data privacy literature, such as k-anonymization and differential privacy, and the supply chain literature; research into the data flows that occur in a supply chain; identify the sensitive/useful data features within these flows; finally, propose and evaluate novel techniques that balance privacy with data utility in the identified context. The project will be jointly supervised by academics in the Business School and in the School of Computer Science.

Keywords: Data privacy, data security, supply chain and information sharing

Desired applicant profile:

  • Quantitative researchers
  • Knowledge on one programming language is desirable, not required, as training will be provided
  • Undergraduate degree in statistics

Funding Notes

This project is not funded, applications from self-funded home and international students are welcome. Outstanding applicants from ANY country may be considered for one of the available University scholarships. The start date is 1st October 2021.
Applications are open until 31st May 2021, however if sufficient applications are received we reserve the right to close the application early.
For more information about scholarships, entry requirements and application process please visit our website:
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When applying, please specify the project title and supervisor of this project and whether you are self-funded or are applying for funding (within or external to the University).
The application must contain the following documents:
1. Covering letter: The covering letter must name the project being applied for and should be addressed to the supervisor. It must set out your reasons and motivation for applying to study at Cardiff University; your understanding, and expectations of doctoral study; and your academic interests generally, and particularly how these relate to the description of the project supplied. The covering letter should be no more than two pages.
2. Academic / Professional Qualifications: Where appropriate, this should also include proof of English Language Competency (7.0 IELTS minimum).
3. References: All applications require two academic references to be submitted in support. Candidates must approach referees themselves and include the references with their application.
4. Curriculum Vitae: This should be no longer than two pages.
5. Research Proposal: The proposal should build directly on the project description that has been supplied. The proposal should be up to a maximum of 1000 words, not including bibliographic references. We suggest that you use the following five headings in your research proposal:
• Your reflections on the title, aims and purpose of the research;
• An overview of some key research literature relevant to the study;
• Your proposals for developing the design and methods of the study;
• A description of potential outcomes of the project for understanding, knowledge, policy and practice (as appropriate to the topic);
• Bibliographic references
This program is available in English only. To request information in Welsh, please contact the Postgraduate Recruitment Team (

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