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University of Sheffield Featured PhD Programmes

Smart Retailing: How Technologies are Revolutionising Customer Experiences (SF19/MOS/LIU)

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Applications accepted all year round
  • Self-Funded PhD Students Only
    Self-Funded PhD Students Only

Project Description

Smart technologies, including interactive display, virtual/augmented reality, recommender systems, Internet of Things, and artificial intelligence, have dramatically transformed how retailers interact with customers and compete in the marketplace. The adoption of these technologies facilitates real-time interaction, provides superior and personalized services, improves retail efficiency, enhance decision-making, and enrich customer experiences. As customers are at the heart of retailing, offering great value to them is critical to success of retailers. Furthermore, smart retailing provides a sense of flexibility, which enables retailers to capture the dynamics of consumer behaviour and adapt quickly to the rapidly changing environment. However, there is a lack of clarity with regard to the concept and theoretical foundations of smart retailing, despite it has become a buzzword during recent years. Moreover, little is known about how smart retailing revolutionises customers’ experiences and enhances their decision-making process.

Therefore, this PhD project aims to: 1. clearly define smart retailing and identify its unique features, comparing with traditional retailing; 2. review the relevant literature in retailing and computer science to gain an in-depth understanding of technological and theoretical foundations of smart retailing; 3. explore how smart retailing influences customer experiences and decision-making process; 4. provide insights on how to create superior value for customers through the use of smart technologies in the new retail era. The findings of this study will fill in the research gap in the literature and offer significant contributions to both academic and practical world.

Eligibility and How to Apply:

Please note eligibility requirement:
• Academic excellence of the proposed student i.e. 2:1 (or equivalent GPA from non-UK universities [preference for 1st class honours]); or a Masters (preference for Merit or above); or APEL evidence of substantial practitioner achievement.
• Appropriate IELTS score, if required.

For further details of how to apply, entry requirements and the application form, see

Please note: Applications that do not include a research proposal of approximately 1,000 words (not a copy of the advert), or that do not include the advert reference (e.g. SF19/…) will not be considered.

Northumbria University takes pride in, and values, the quality and diversity of our staff. We welcome applications from all members of the community. The University holds an Athena SWAN Bronze award in recognition of our commitment to improving employment practices for the advancement of gender equality and is a member of the Euraxess network, which delivers information and support to professional researchers.

Funding Notes

Please note this is a self-funded project and does not include tuition fees or stipend.

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