Dr Guoqing Zhao is a Lecturer in Operations Management. His research area includes supply chain risk management, supply chain resilience, and knowledge management, with a specific focus on the agri-food industry.

What is your field of research?

My research area includes supply chain risk management, supply chain resilience, and knowledge management, with a specific focus on the agri-food industry. Through equipping Agri-Food Supply Chains (AFSCs) with resilience capabilities, AFSCs can return to its normal or better state after being disturbed. This is critical for AFSCs, especially in the era that full of climate changes and business uncertainties. More recently, I am conducting research related to industry 4.0 technologies and its impacts on the AFSCs.

Dr Guoqing Zhao

How did you become interested in the field?

I have been interested in AFSC resilience since I was a PhD student of 2016. I was funded by the Horizon 2020 RUC-APS project (2016-2021) (Risk and Uncertain Conditions for Agriculture Production Systems) to take secondments to different countries across Asia (China), Europe (France, Italy, Spain, UK, Poland), and South America (Argentina and Chile). Through discussing with various AFSC stakeholders across different countries, I understand that AFSCs involved with various risks. Thus, I have dedicated myself into AFSC risk reduction and resilience building.

How did you come to work at Swansea University?

I joined Swansea University in January 2023 after one year as a research fellow at University of Plymouth (UoP), where I was responsible for knowledge mobilization between UoP and eHealth industry of Cornwall and Isles of Scilly. I also completed my PhD at UoP, where I got opportunities to involve in the EU Horizon 2020, UK Newton, and The Royal Society funded projects. The School of Management at Swansea University has been the perfect place for me to do research, as it has internationally renowned scholars, collaborative research environment, lovely colleagues, and sufficient supports from experienced professionals.   

What do you hope to achieve with your research?

AFSCs are becoming more complex in structure, more easily be affected by the external environment, and thus more susceptible to different vulnerabilities and risks. My aim is to help AFSCs to return to its normal state or a better on after being disturbed with an efficient, effective, and affordable manner. This may involve different perspectives to explore this issue, such as from individual, organizational, supply chain, and the society perspectives.

What practical applications could your research have?

There are several practical implications of my research. First, my research would provide practical guidance for agri-businesses of how to respond and recover from disruptions. Second, most of businesses in AFSCs are small and medium-sized enterprises, this means that they do not have unlimited resources to tackle disruptions. Through prioritizing enablers/barriers/capabilities, my research would enable AFSC managers to prioritize and allocate resources in an effective way.

What is next for your research?

Next, I will apply funding from such as The British Academy, The Royal Society, and Economic and Social Research Council to support my research. Without funding support, it is difficult for researchers to do impactful research. Simultaneously, I will continuously publish my work in high-quality journals and make presentations in different international conferences to achieve high impacts.

Find out more about Dr Guoqing Zhao