An analysis of supply chain related graduate programmes in Europe

Onar, Sezi Cevik, Aktas, Emel, Topcu, Ilker and Doran, Desmond (2013) An analysis of supply chain related graduate programmes in Europe. Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, 18 (4). pp. 398-412. ISSN 1359-8546

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Motivated by lack of studies at graduate level supply chain education, this research aims to explore trends in supply chain related graduate programmes in Europe and to propose a framework for designing such programmes.


We determine ‘knowledge’ and ‘skills’ areas applicable to supply chain management (SCM) education and analyse supply chain related graduate programmes published by the European Logistics Association in 2004. We revisit the same programmes in 2011 to determine the recent situation and the trends. We use cluster analysis to reveal the similarities and differences among these programmes.


We find two distinct clusters: Focused and Diversified. Focused programmes offer modules in knowledge and skills areas apart from SCM at a negligible level and place more emphasis on SCM in 2011 when compared to 2004. Diversified programmes show a similar increase in the emphasis on SCM with more variety in the knowledge and skills areas.

Research limitations:

Our findings are based on SCM programmes delivered in Europe and over two discrete time periods. Future research should seek to extend this analysis to other continents with larger samples and incorporate the industry perspective to determine the potential gap between what programmes offer and what industry requires.

Practical implications:

SCM related graduate programmes continue to redefine themselves. Clustering predominantly serves the universities in re-assessing and re-engineering their programmes, helps prospective graduates in their selection process and assists managers in their recruitment practices.


This paper establishes a baseline for assessing SCM related graduate programmes with respect to the knowledge and skills they offer and introduces a framework that may serve as a starting point for the design and positioning of such programmes.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Business, Management and Economics > Business and Management
Subjects: A General Works
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher education > LB2361 Curriculum
Depositing User: Desmond Doran
Date Deposited: 04 Jul 2013 10:28
Last Modified: 06 Mar 2017 18:53

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