Dr Ali Esfahbodi PhD, FHEA, MSc, BEng, PGCHE

Dr Ali Esfahbodi

Department of Management
Associate Professor (Senior Lecturer) in Operations Management and Sustainability
Director of MSc Management programmes

Contact details

Department of Management
Birmingham Business School
University of Birmingham
Edgbaston, Birmingham
B15 2TT

Dr Ali Esfahbodi is an Associate Professor (Senior Lecturer) in Operations Management and Sustainability, and Programme Director of the MSc Management Suite at Birmingham Business School - University of Birmingham. Ali’s research lies primarily in sustainable and circular economy supply chains, digitalization and SCM 4.0, and the exploration of new technologies in manufacturing such as Blockchain, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet-of-Things (IoT), Digital Twin, and GS1 standards and their impacts on the sustainability performance.

His work aims to help companies with successful undertakings of emerging technologies and offer opportunities to achieve better economic performance and greater environmental protection. Ali has a wide portfolio of teaching expertise in Operations and SCM at various levels of Higher Education (Undergraduate, Masters, MBA, and PhD). He has consulted with many firms, presented at national and international academic and practitioner conferences, published many peer-reviewed articles in top-tier journals, and won several awards for research excellence.

You can follow Ali on LinkedIn


  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA)
  • Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education (PGCHE)
  • PhD in Management
  • MSc in Engineering Management
  • BSc in Mechanical Engineering


Dr Ali Esfahbodi is an Associate Professor (Senior Lecturer) in Operations Management and Sustainability at the Birmingham Business School. Ali holds a PhD in Management and an MSc in Engineering Management from the University of Birmingham. He also holds a BSc (Honours) in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Science and Research Tehran. Ali has a solid engineering and manufacturing background and social sciences expertise, drawing together core management disciplines and engineering vision and manufacturing systems. In addition, he possesses a wide range of qualitative and quantitative research skills and rigorous data analysis expertise in multivariate statistics, including structural equation modelling, path analysis and hierarchical moderated regression.

Ali’s research interests are in the areas of supply chain digital transformation (SCM 4.0), big data-driven supply chain, and new technologies and supply chain sustainability, and Social Sustainability Supply Chain Practices (SSSCP). His PhD thesis empirically analysed the organisational performance of UK manufacturing firms within a sustainable supply chain management (SSCM) context, investigating whether the implementation of SSCM initiatives can be both environmentally beneficial and commercially viable. He received several awards and achievements throughout his PhD such as the ‘Best Paper Award’ at the 9th International Symposium on Global Manufacturing and China (2014) and the ‘Outstanding Paper Award’ at the Midland Regional Doctoral Colloquium Conference - University of Birmingham (2013).

Ali was involved in the Seventh Framework Programme of the European Union on Europe-China High Value Engineering Network (EC-HVEN) project, contributing to the development of the industrial sustainability research stream by establishing and promoting international collaboration on sustainable manufacturing and engineering technologies between Europe and China. He has also collaborated with Expo Milano on the development of green and renewable energy initiatives theme, which was awarded the Silver Prize Medal for ‘Sustainable Design’. Ali has gained extensive experience in supply chain ecosystem development and sustainable supply network design from several overseas industrial consulting projects and would be keen to develop industrial links further.



  • Introduction to Business Strategy and Supply Chain Management (Year 1)


  • Operations Management (GDBA)
  • Strategic Purchasing and Supply Management (GDBA)
  • Quantitative Management Techniques (GDBA)
  • Value Chains, Outsourcing and Procurement (MSc Management)
  • Value Chains, Outsourcing and Procurement (MSc IB Singapore)
  • Organisational and Operations Management (MSc AEM) 

Postgraduate supervision

Dr Ali Esfahbodi welcomes PhD candidates who are interested in engaging with the broad areas of Operations and Supply Chain Management and the following areas.

  • Supply Chain Digital Transformation (SCM 4.0)
  • Industry 5.0 and Disruptive Technologies in Operations and SCM
  • Supply Chain Sustainability
  • Social Sustainability Supply Chain Practices (SSSCP)
  • Supply Chain Resilience and Risk Management


Research interests

  • Sustainable supply chain management
  • Supply chain analytics - big data
  • New technologies in operations and supply chain - Industry 4.0; Web 2.0; Data-driven information technologies; Smart factories; Intelligent manufacturing technology systems
  • Manufacturing firms and industrial sustainability
  • Conceptual framework and structural modelling
  • Performance measurement and management
  • Leagile manufacturing strategies and operations

Other activities

Ali serves as an Editorial Board Member of International Journal of Production Economics, Journal of Cleaner Production, Sustainability, International Journal of Supply and Operations Management, and International Journal of Innovation and Sustainable Development. He is also a member of the European Operations Management Association (EUROMA), Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply (CIPS), and the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (CSCMP).


Esfahbodi, A., Zhang, Y. and Liu, Y. (2023), "The fallacy of profitable green supply chains: The role of green information systems (GIS) in attenuating the sustainability trade-offs", International Journal of Production Economics, Vol. 255, 108703, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijpe.2022.108703 

Sanderson, J., Esfahbodi, A. and Lonsdale, C. (2022), "The effect of team-member knowledge, skills and abilities (KSAs) and a common learning experience on sourcing teamwork effectiveness", International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management, Vol. 52 No. 5/6, pp. 393-413. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJPDLM-07-2021-0277 

Esfahbodi, A., Pang, G. and Peng, L. (2022), "Determinants of consumers' adoption intention for blockchain technology in E-commerce", Journal of Digital Economy, Vol. 1, No. 2, pp. 89-101, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jdec.2022.11.001 

Mousapour, M. M., Mohammadnazari, Z., Esfahbodi, A. (2022), "Food Products Pricing Theory with Application of Machine Learning and Game Theory Approach", International Journal of Production Research, Vol. ahead-of-print, pp. 1-21,  https://doi.org/10.1080/00207543.2022.2128921

Esfahbodi, A. and Zhang, Y. (2020), ‘Effects of Sustainable Supply Chain Management (SSCM) Practices on Performance Outcomes in UK Manufacturing Industry: The Moderating Role of Green Information Systems’, European Operations Management Association: EurOMA 27, Vol. 1., p. 592-602.

Esfahbodi, A. and Zhang, Y. (2020), "Sustainable Supply Chain Management in Developed vs. Emerging Economies: Evidence from the UK and China’s Manufacturing Industry", Encyclopedia of Renewable and Sustainable Materials, Volume 5, Pages 537-549.

Esfahbodi, A. (2019). 'Sustainable Supply Chain Management in Developed vs. Emerging Economies’ The European Conference on Sustainability, Energy & the Environment 2019 (ECSEE2019)

Esfahbodi, A., Zhang, Y., Watson, G. and Zhang, T. (2017), “Governance Pressures and Performance Outcomes of Sustainable Supply Chain Management - An Empirical Analysis of UK Manufacturing Industry”, Journal of Cleaner Production., dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2016.07.098.

Esfahbodi, A., Zhang, Y. and Watson, G. (2016), “Sustainable supply chain management in emerging economies: Trade-offs between environmental and cost performance”, International Journal of Production Economics., Vol. 181, pp. 350-366, dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijpe.2016.02.013.

Esfahbodi, A., Zhang, Y., and Watson, G. (2013), “An Integrated Framework to Assess the Impact of Sustainable Supply Chain Management Practices on Firms’ Performance”, Proceedings of the 9th International Symposium on Global Manufacturing and China. (Prize for the best paper award)

Esfahbodi, A., Zhang, Y., and Watson, G. (2013), “Sustainable Supply Chain Management (SSCM) Practice and Organisational Performance: An Integrated Framework”, Midlands Regional Doctoral Colloquium. (Received prize for the best presentation award)

Esfahbodi, A., Zhang, Y. and Watson, G. (2012), “The Implementation of Sustainable Supply Chain Management (SSCM): An Exploratory Study on the Essential Factors and Performance Implications”, Proceedings of the 16th Cambridge International Manufacturing Symposium.

Pourmirza, M., Esfahbodi, A., and Sadeghpour A. (2011), “Investigation of Sustainable Design in Commercial Building in Tehran”, Emerging Trends in Energy Conservation - ETEC 1st International conference, Tehran, Iran.

View all publications in research portal