Shipping container in logistics process

Postgraduate research in operational research and logistics

Ready to start your research career? Explore our postgraduate research degrees in operational research and logistics

If you're ready to take your existing qualifications and expertise in Operational Research and Logistics into a postgraduate research degree, Portsmouth is the perfect place for you.

We're showing how better analytics for healthcare, risk and security can have a positive impact on the lives and wellbeing of people around the world.

From how to make renewable energy cheaper and how to use new tech to make transport smarter, faster and greener, our Operational Research and Logistics research is helping public and private organisations around the world to answer these sort of complex questions – and when you study with us for a postgraduate research degree, you'll play your own part in transforming our expertise into impact.

Our research brings together the University's maths, technology, business and industrial research experts. and encompasses analytics, data, algorithms, system design, simulation, modelling, programming, forecasting – and a whole world of problem-solving.

Business and management studies at the University of Portsmouth is ranked 2nd of the modern universities by research power

Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2021

Read more about our business and management research

Types of research degrees

Find out about our PhD, MPhil, Professional Doctorate and PhD by Publication opportunities in Operational Research and Logistics below, including how to apply, entry requirements and funding your degree. For more detailed information about the application process, visit our How to Apply pages.

Operational Research & Logistics PhDs and MPhils

Explore our pre-approved funded and self-funded PhD projects in Operational Research and Logistics, or submit your own research idea. 

PhD and MPhil projects

Funded

There are currently no funded PhD projects available in this area – for more information on funding your own research project, visit our pages on funding your research degree.

Submit your own idea

If you already have a research idea, find a supervisor whose research interests match yours by searching our Find a PhD Supervisor page. Once you've identified someone suitable, contact them to discuss your idea.

PhD by Publication

A PhD by publication is a postgraduate research degree based on research you've already undertaken and had published (excluding self-publishing) before registering with us.

Eligible research outputs include peer-reviewed academic papers, complete books or chapters in anthologies, and other materials accepted for publication, exhibited or performed. You'll have to submit these materials for examination between 6–12 months after registering with us.

For more information, please visit our PhD by Publication page.

Duration, fees and funding 

What do my tuition fees cover?

If you're self-funding your PhD, you'll pay tuition fees to the University to cover course and university costs.

Your tuition fees cover:

  • The cost of your postgraduate research programme* at the University as well as charges for registration, tuition, supervision, and examinations
  • Bespoke training, professional development courses, networking, and research support through The Graduate School
  • Research seminars and workshops (university-wide and faculty-specific)
  • A contribution to funding to attend a conference or development activity in your research field
  • Tailor-made weekly and monthly events, including weekly, themed experienced researcher-led talks and workshops
  • Helping you become part of our thriving research community, including Research and Innovation services where 77% of our research is world leading and internationally excellent in REF 2021
  • Your graduation ceremony
  • Viva examination and administration costs
  • The facilities and equipment you need to complete your studies, such as computer rooms, access to laptops, the Library, and laboratories
  • Access to resources including electronic journals, alternative guide to funding, and thousands of hours of educational videos on LinkedIn Learning
  • University support services including academic, financial, careers and wellbeing support and personal tutors
  • Membership of the Students' Union (giving you the right to vote in elections, join clubs and societies, and get free independent advice)
  • Access to software such as Microsoft Office, SPSS and Adobe Creative Suite (this includes Photoshop, InDesign, and Adobe Premiere Pro)

*Please note that some research programmes may come with additional bench fees.

How long will my research degree take?

  • MPhil: 2 years full-time, 4 years part-time
  • PhD: 3 years full-time, 6 years part-time
  • PhD by Publication: 1 year part-time

How much will my degree cost?

PhD and MPhil

UK, Channel Islands and Isle of Man students 

  • Full-time:  £4,596 per year (may be subject to annual increase)
  • Part-time and part-time distance learning: £2,298 per year (may be subject to annual increase)

EU students

(including Transition Scholarship)

  • Full-time:  £4,596 per year (may be subject to annual increase)
  • Part-time and part-time distance learning: £2,298 per year (may be subject to annual increase)

International students  

  • Full-time: £17,900 - £19,200 per year (may be subject to annual increase)
  • Part-time and part-time distance learning: £8,950 - £9,600 per year (may be subject to annual increase)

PhD by Publication 

External candidates: £4,596

Members of staff: £1,760 

 

All fees are subject to annual increase. If you are an EU student starting a programme in 20221/23 please visit this page.

PhD and MPhil

UK, Channel Islands and Isle of Man students 

  • Full-time:  £4,596 per year (may be subject to annual increase)*
  • Part-time and part-time distance learning: £2,298 per year (may be subject to annual increase)*

EU students

(including Transition Scholarship)

  • Full-time:  £4,596 per year (may be subject to annual increase)*
  • Part-time and part-time distance learning: £2,298 per year (may be subject to annual increase)*

International students

  • Full-time students: £17,900 - £19,200 (may be subject to annual increase)
  • Part-time and part-time distance learning: £8,950 - £9,600 (may be subject to annual increase)

PhD by Publication 

External candidates: £4,596*

Members of staff: £1,850

 

All fees are subject to annual increase. If you are an EU student starting a programme in 2023/24 please visit this page.

*This is the 2022/23 UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) maximum studentship fee; this fee will increase to the 2023/24 UKRI maximum studentship fee when UKRI announces this rate in Spring 2023

Bench fees

Some PhD projects may include additional fees – known as bench fees – for equipment and other consumables, and these will be added to your standard tuition fee. Speak to the supervisory team during your interview about any additional fees you may have to pay. Please note, bench fees are not eligible for discounts and are non-refundable.

Funding support

MPhil full-time and part-time courses are eligible for the Government Postgraduate Loan (UK/EU students only).

PhD full-time and part-time courses are eligible for the Government Doctoral Loan (UK/EU students only).

For information on other sources of funding, visit our funding your postgraduate research degree page.

Entry requirements

The entry requirements for a PhD, or MPhil include a good honours degree or equivalent in a relevant subject, or a master’s degree in an appropriate subject. Equivalent professional experience and/or qualifications may be considered. All applicants are subject to interview.

If English is not your first language, you'll need English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.5 with no component score below 6.0.

If you don't meet the English language requirements yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

Support and facilities

When you join us, you'll be supported by our Graduate School, alongside your assigned supervisory team, who'll help you get the most from our facilities. The Graduate School will help you become part of our thriving, collaborative research community, and help grow your skills as a researcher through the Graduate School Development Programme, which offers training, workshops and events.

You'll be able to use open access computer suites across campus. These are great working spaces with high-spec PCs, Macs and printing facilities. You can also use more specialised software and equipment, such as large format printing and audio-visual equipment. Specialist technicians are on hand if you need assistance.

What can a postgraduate research degree do for my career?

Once you complete your postgraduate research degree, you'll be a highly-skilled researcher with the knowledge and skills to make an impact in many different industries.

Your postgraduate research qualification demonstrates to potential employers that you're an intelligent, capable and motivated person, with provable abilities and experience in critical thinking, problem-solving, project management, communication, leadership and creativity.

Apply

Apply for a research degree in Operational Research and Logistics by completing our online form. 

February (2023 start)

April (2023 start)

October (2023 start)

Current research

Explore the work we're doing across our areas of expertise in Operational Research and Logistics.

Decision and Data Analytics

Research in the design of decision support systems, and use of data analysis, to help people make better decisions through a better understanding of their data.

Data analyst looking at data on a monitor
Read more

Exact and metaheuristic solution methods

Heuristic and metaheuristic techniques are powerful and flexible research methodologies that offer a faster way of solving complex logistical challenges.

Person looking at projection
Read more

Healthcare analytics

From nurse scheduling to infection and disease modelling, our research provides decision-makers in the healthcare sector with optimal strategies for treatment.

Nurse pointing at scan on computer screen
Read more

Multiple Criteria Decision Aid

Approaching complex problems with conflicting criteria, or uncertain data, our research helps people make more informed decisions.

Meeting between large group in room with pink wall
Read more

Optimisation Modelling

As well as improving business efficiency, we're enabling people to make optimal decisions that can lead to practices with enhanced economic, environmental or social benefits.

Female warehouse working checking tablet
Read more

Renewable Energy and Sustainability Analytics

Modelling to answer a host of questions, from how to produce renewable energy more cheaply, to how the associated logistics can be sustainable.

Windfarm at sea on a sunny day
Read more

Risk and Security Analytics

We help organisations learn from failures, so they can improve the quality and resilience of their operations, and we develop new analytic approaches to detect security threats.

Man cleaning up oil spill on a beach in Thailand
Read more

Transportation and Maritime Systems

Our research focuses on developing innovative optimisation models and decision support systems, to help improve the mobility of people, goods and services.

Portsmouth Harbour with historic dockyard ships and ferries
Read more