PhD Summer Academy for PhD students (2 weeks)

The PhD Summer Academy for PhD students is a 2 weeks intense period of learning for PhD students, debating, and discovering the fundamental concepts and recent trends in supply chain management, in addition to meeting future colleagues and having a great time in Zaragoza, Spain. Apply Now!

The 13th edition of the PhD Summer Academy in Logistics and Supply Chain Management will take place from 8 to 19 June, 2020 at ZLC Campus in Zaragoza, Spain.

(8-19 JUNE)






Prestigious instructors

Last year’s professors and subjects were:

Jan Fransoo
Kuehne Logistics University
Operations and Logistics in Fragmented Grocery Retail
Elena Katok
University of Texas at Dallas
Behavioral Operations Management
Stefan Nickel
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology
Health Care Logistics
Beril Toktay
Georgia Institute of Technology
Circular Economy Models and Applications

Professors from past editions of the PhD Summer Academy added the following:


"The MIT-ZLC PhD Summer Academy program gave me the tools and skills to better tackle down my PhD studies. This program has given me the opportunity to enrich my academic and work experience with the interaction of peers in the Supply Chain Management from different parts of the world, the lecturers from respected professors in their field, and the opportunity of living in Zaragoza, the MIT experience has been a dream that certainly exceeded my expectations. I do recommend this program to supply chain Ph.D. candidates, as it will allow them to improve their expertise in research and expand their networking"

Lineth Rodríguez, Panama
PhD Candidate at Ecole Centrale Nantes
Nantes (France)


In addition to being introduced to different topics in the field by a group of distinguished professors, it is a great opportunity to meet doctoral students from different institutions and exchange ideas. Although we expect applicants to come from different institutions, countries and backgrounds, the one common denominator is excellence. Applicants are selected to be part of a discussion forum made up of outstanding scholars in the area of logistics and supply chain management.


The PhD Summer Academy 2020 program is administered under the MIT-Zaragoza International Logistics Program, one of the select MIT educational and research partnerships. Upon completion of all courses to which you have enrolled, you will be awarded a certificate stating that you have completed a PhD summer course under the MIT- Zaragoza Program.


Professor: Jan C. Fransoo, Kuehne Logistics University, Germany.
Dates: 18, 19, 21 June
Course Description:
In most developing markets, the dominant grocery retail channel is a dense network of millions of mom-and-pop stores. These nano stores (Fransoo et al., 2017) display interesting operations, logistics, and commercial characteristics that render it into a very relevant field of study, with academic work in this field now rapidly developing. In the developed world, however, we also see an increasing fragmentation of grocery retail, with large hypermarkets under pressure of declining market shares and convenience stores, hard discounters and online grocery services growing fast. Moreover, in the most advanced markets, the distinction between the foodservice market (like restaurants) and the grocery retail market appears to become blurred.
In this course, Professor Fransoo outlines the major characteristics of the nano stores channel, with an emphasis on novel research results from developing markets. In class, we identify research opportunities in this exciting field, and build on the insights of novel players in developing markets like GoJek and to understand the operations and logistics implications for the fragmentation in developed markets.
Professor Fransoo initiates the discussion, but students in the course are expected to actively take part in identifying and understanding underlying trends in grocery retail to develop perspectives on long-term impactful research questions and domains.
Professor: Elena Katok, University of Texas at Dallas, US
Dates: 18, 19, 21 June
Course Description:
Much of the modern research in operations management uses stylized models to gain insights into how production, distribution, and service systems operate. These models typically assume that human decision-makers are fully rational expected-profit maximizers. But real decision-makers sometimes care about goals other than profit maximizations, are subject to behavioral biases, and are not very good at optimization, especially when uncertainty is involved. This course provides an introduction to the area of Behavioral Operations Management (BOM). The goals of BOM are to better understand how human decision makers affect performance or complex systems, identify ways in which human decision-makers systematically deviate from fully rational expected-profit maximizing behavior, and extend our models to account for such systematic deviations. Some of the topics covered include an introduction to using laboratory experiments with human subjects in operations, individual decisions, inventory management, and supply chain contracts. The main goal of the course is to expose students to behavioral research and gain a deeper understanding of how to incorporate behavioral regularities into operations models so as to make these models behaviorally robust. The course uses a seminar format. Each session there readings are assigned to be discussed and critiqued as well as hands-on demonstrations of behavioral experiments.
Professor: Dr. Stefan Nickel Institute of Operations Research, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Germany
Dates: 12, 13, 14 June
Course Description:
The costs of health care providers is rising in almost every country. Governments react with reforms that incentivize economic behavior of hospitals, e.g., the introduction of the Diagnosis Related Groups (DRG) system in several countries led to the elimination of the principle of cost coverage in favor of the medical, performance-related payment with the threat of deficits. Therefore, targets are to improve quality, transparency, and efficiency of hospital services in a sustainable way. To achieve this, processes have to be analyzed and improved. Health Care Logistics addresses the efficient planning, realization and control of patient-, material- and information-flow within the healthcare sector. Therefore, the use of Operations Research (OR) methods plays a crucial role. It is important to not only put emphasis upon economic efficiency but also to take the quality of care and patient satisfaction into account. On the other hand, healthcare logistics should not get involved in (core) medical decisions. In this course we consider planning problems that arise along the pathway of the patient through the hospital with a focus on appointment planning, patient transportation and operating room scheduling. Models and results also from real-world projects are presented and discussed. Moreover, the interaction of appropriate logistics concepts with modern OR models allows for a patient-centred treatment, by respecting the needs of the patient and allowing for a smoother process. The digitalization of the health care sector offers additional opportunities.
Professor: Dr, Beril Toktay, Georgia Tech., US
Dates: 11, 12, 14 June
Course Description:
A circular economy is an economy in which resource input and waste are minimized through long-lasting design, maintenance, repair, reuse, remanufacturing, refurbishing, recycling, and upcycling. According to Accenture, “Today’s business practices will contribute to a global gap of eight billion tons between the supply and demand of natural resources by 2030. This is equal to the total resource usage in North America in 2014 and translates to $4.5 trillion of lost economic growth by 2030 and as much as $25 trillion by 2050.” Technical feasibility explains only part of this gap; there is a big divergence between what is technically feasible and current practice. In this course, we discuss business models for incumbents, platform providers, and third parties to unlock value from the circular economy. The readings draw from peer-reviewed articles in the operations and industrial ecology literature, as well as managerial articles from outlets such as California Management Review and Harvard Business Review.

Who should apply

Every summer, a group of selected students and scholars from different institutions, countries and backgrounds get together to participate in an intense period of learning, debating, and discovering the fundamental concepts and recent trends in supply chain management.

When to apply

All applications and supporting materials must be submitted by June 1st.

Ready to apply?

Apply for admission! To apply for the Summer Academy you must submit the following documents to [email protected]:

  • Current resume including academic degree, a brief list of the related courses taken so far (in the field of OR/IE/OM/Statistics), areas of research interest, specialization or competence, dissertation: the title and short description of your thesis, relevant work experience
  • One recommendation letter from people capable of judging applicant´s professional and/or academic promise (i.e., supervisor, professor)
  • Statement of interest for applying for the PhD Summer Academy. Please explain your specific area of academic interest (research topic you want to work on), how your education has prepared you to be successful in this program, what do you hope to achieve in this program. The statement should be no longer than 500 words

PhD Summer Academy Team

Gültekin Kuyzu

PhD Summer Academy Program Director
+34 976 077 608

Beatriz Vergara

PhD & Executive Education Coordinator
+34 976 077 268

Tuition and Fees

Tuition Fee: 975 €
Early bird registration (before March 15): 875 €

Other Fees

Alumni PhD Summer Academy: 700 €
Two students coming from the same university: 780 €
Fee per Module: 300 €

Living Expenses

Participants will have to make their own arrangements for their accommodation, meals, visa and transportation and must provide evidence of health insurance coverage while in Spain. The organization will be happy to help applicants with the travel and paperwork requirements.


250-700 €/month


150-300 €/month


50 €/month


50 €/month


90-150 €/month


50 €/month

Do you require further information?

Please fill in the following form to send an info request. Our admissions team are happy to assist you and answer any queries you may have about our master’s programs or the application process.