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Research Associate: Sustainable Cold-Chain project

Job Description

The Centre for Logistics & Sustainability at Heriot-Watt University has over the last 7 years developed an international reputation for using large scale high fidelity computer models to understand how logistics might be organised differently. The centre has focused on solutions that will deliver net zero carbon emissions and therefore reflect the emerging energy transitions

Over the last 7 years the centre has secured in excess of £3m research funding per year and developed a international network of collaborators including University of Cambridge, University of Westminster, and several internationals partners in India, China, and Africa.

This post offers the successful candidate an outstanding opportunity to develop their research career, by engaging with a close-knit international community of researchers on a range of well-funded reresearch projects

The Research Associate will report directly to the Principal investigator Prof Phil Greening and be responsible for leading the agent based modelling activity. They will an important member of the logistics modelling team and will be expected to integrate this research into the broader logistics research carried out by the centre. Whilst the initial appointment is for 12 months there are several related (funded) projects scheduled to start at the end of this project which present research opportunities out to 2024. This is a Grade 7 post SP32.

Detailed Description

The Sustainable Cold-Chain (SCC) project will bring together world leading interdisciplinary researchers working across the food cold chain sector and sustainable energy to provide a whole systems approach overseeing technology, finances, food security and sociological aspects of how we can deliver (i) demand and climate adaptation, (ii) resilience and (iii) decarbonisation of the cold-chain in the food industry simultaneously.

The proposed program of research will provide fundamental new knowledge to decarbonise the food cold chain and enable the UK food cold chain to decarbonise in line with Government targets by 2050. The food cold chain is complex and lacks integration between sub-sectors. Although technological issues exist, many decarbonisation issues are techno-economic or behavioural. Therefore the project will integrate technical (engineering and food quality/safety), behavioural, financial and business aspects to provide sustainable integrated solutions to the decarbonisation conundrum.

The team have a track record of working together in the food sector and have significant experience in each of their sectors of excellence. The successful candidate will play an important role in this team and will be expected to work closely with our partners at the university of Birmingham, London South Bank University.

Key Duties and Responsibilities

The post holder is required to:

  • Design, build, test and implement a sophisticated agent based model reflecting the specific nature of a sustainable cold chain
  • Design and implement a sophisticated design of experiments
  • Provide regular updates and progress reports to the project team
  • Generate academic output associated with the research activity
  • Work closely with other members of the research centre and project partners…
  • Analyse the results of the computer experiments

Education, Qualifications and Experience

This will form the basis of the selection criteria and shortlisting.

Essential Criteria

  • PhD in a related subject (computer modelling of supply chains/logistics, agent based modelling, sustainable logistics, or energy transitions)
  • A good publication track record relevant to the project
  • Good data analytical skills/capability

Desirable Criteria

  • Good written and verbal communication skills
  • Familiarity with the challenges of the cold chain

How to apply

This is a Research Associate role at Grade 7, salary maximum £38,017. Applications can be submitted up to midnight (UK time) on 4th July 2021.

At Heriot-Watt University we understand that being diverse makes us better which is why we support a culture of respect and equal opportunity, and value diversity at the heart of what we do. We want to increase the diversity of our workplace to underpin a dynamic and creative environment.

We welcome and will consider flexible working patterns e.g. part-time working and job share options.

Use our total rewards calculator: https://www.hw.ac.uk/about/work/total-rewards-calculator.htm to see the value of benefits provided by Heriot-Watt University.


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://www.comses.net/jobs/518/