Karim Hatem Hassan Ahmed

Current student

PhD Student
Study area
Business and Economics

As a university that prides itself on the ability to rise through the ranks, while striking a balance between student social and academic lifestyles, Loughborough University is an ideal choice.

Please outline your project in detail

An imminent rise in corporate scrutiny calls for global responsibility in implementing sustainability across organizational supply chains; a complex decision-making process requiring countless foundations, measures and procedures. We present a Decision Support System (DSS) to aid managers in implementing Sustainable Supply Chain Management (SSCM). This DSS is hinged on Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) identified from literature and practice, which are then ranked and prioritized by global experts, and brought together in this system to help managers with evaluating their supply chain sustainability, as well as guiding supply chain sustainability decision-making.

What were you doing before you started your PhD?

Teaching at University back home after finishing my M.Sc degree.

Why Loughborough University?

As a university that prides itself on the ability to rise through the ranks, while striking a balance between student social and academic lifestyles, Loughborough University is an ideal choice. Needless to mention, with PhD research, we seek renowned academics and researchers who could help propel our career. This I have identified within my supervisors, as well as within my research group. Not only this, but also having the ability to benefit from great facilities, and being conveniently geographically located such that interaction with other universities and access to conferences/workshops/events is facilitated.

What do you enjoy the most about studying a PhD with us?

I enjoy the opportunity to share and discuss my research experience with colleagues, and the ability to approach other academics for their insight into various aspects of my work. But most importantly, the diverse number of internationally renowned scholars whom we have, as well as fortnightly research seminars with guest speakers from around the world, which have all helped me further improve myself as well as my career potential.

Describe what it is like to study a PhD, and how this differs from undergraduate/masters study?

The main difference of a PhD with other degrees is that it is self-driven. You need to have the passion and motivation to power through the various stages of the PhD lifecycle. Not only this, the research is a turbulent environment, as such, you will be researching a topic for weeks, only to find out that it has just been published. So managing your expectations and your time are the biggest challenge. But if you are lucky enough to have a supportive supervisor, it makes a world of a difference, especially when you can discuss with them and address any issues that may arise, while they guide your research career through their wealth of experience.

Describe a day in the life of a PhD student?

A PhD day varies, but generally, throughout the days you would be working in the office, conducting research, having an occasional discussion with a colleague, heading off to teach/attend a seminar, grabbing some pot noodle lunch (got to be economic), rushing to meet your supervisor(s), perhaps heading off to the gym (or some other form of stress relieving sport), and maybe if you are lucky get home before sunrise, and put your head on the bed and perhaps even get a couple of hours sleep.

Why did you decide to undertake a PhD in your area?

Feeling passionate about a topic that could contribute to making a change to the world, a Ph.D. and academic career felt like the most suitable position to be a change agent for the better. It might not be a superhero position, but bridging the gaps and having the conversations are key in instigating change, or at least the first step in the ripple effect.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

I hope to continue publishing in reputable journals, progressing my career further and hopefully attain associate professorship, while contributing to the conversation that bridges the gap between academia and practice. This is in an endeavor to make organizations environmentally friendly and the world a better place. Perhaps on a closer path to Professorship and sitting on the boards of some journals and conferences.

If you could give one piece of advice to a future PhD student, what would it be?

Be realistic. Know what you are signing up for in detail and ask all the questions beforehand. Do your research about your research topic beforehand.