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Dr Jeff Jia

Dr Jeff Jia

Senior Lecturer in Supply Network Management


+44 (0) 1392 722125

Streatham Court, University of Exeter, Rennes Drive, Exeter, EX4 4PU, UK

Dr Jeff (Fu) Jia is a Senior Lecturer in Supply Chain Management. He is a co-founder and director of ‘Business, Nature and Value Research Centre’ affiliated with Exeter, which aims to focus on the relationships between business, nature and value creation. Dr. Jia’s research interests include supply relationship management in a cross cultural context, global sourcing, supply chain learning and innovation and sustainable SCM in agricultural and industrial contexts. He is a productive author publishing in international conferences and top supply chain management journals such as International Journal of Operations and Production Management, Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, International Journal of Production Economics, International Business Review, Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Journal of Business Logistics and Journal of Purchasing and Supply Management, and International Journal of Logistics Management among others. He has also edited a book and contributed several book chapters. Dr Jia is an Associate Editor of Journal of Purchasing and Supply Management and a Managing Editor of International Food and Agribusiness Management Review (IFAMR). Prior to his academic career, he had worked in the 3PL sector in Beijing, China. Dr. Jia holds a B. Eng in Mechanical Engineering, China, a MBA from Birmingham Business School, UK and a PhD from Cranfield School of Management, UK.

Dr Jia has been leading and being involved extensively with the industry on a number of large scale projects including Newton Caldas with University of Los Andes in Colombia; WWF climate savers Chinese innovation case studies; Global sourcing and International Purchasing Offices, to name a few. He is Principal Investigator on a series of ‘Innovation Case Studies’ examining sustainability-related innovations by the Chinese-based operations of 8 multi-national companies (all well-known brands, head-quartered in the US, Europe and China). This is a multi-disciplinary project involving colleagues in leadership studies (Jonathan Gosling), innovation (John Bessant) and supply chain management (Jeff Jia), as well as close liaison with industrial partners. It is funded by WWF China and the HEFCE HE Innovation Fund up to 2014/15 academic year. A spin-off project on ‘Agricultural natural resource management’ is planned and Tetra Pak provided an initial fund. For more information regarding the WWF project, please go to Jeff’s blog.

In a separate project Dr. Jia investigates the roles and capabilities required for the ‘International Purchasing Office in China’ (2010-2014) in the process of Global Sourcing for MNCs, and has a series of publications published or accepted by top international journals, with Professor Richard Lamming (Manchester Business School). He has extensive research links and collaborates with world class academics in the UK, US, Italy, China and Japan, and has worked with Supply Chain Management experts Professors Andrew Cox, Martin Christopher and Professor Lamming in different stages of his academic career.

Nationality: Chinese


Jeff holds a B. Eng in Mechanical Engineering from China, an MBA from Birmingham Business School and a Master of Research and a PhD in Management from Cranfield School of Management.

Senior Fellow Higher Education academy


Research clusters

Research interests

Jeff’s research areas are focused on purchasing and supply management with a particular interest in global sourcing, buyer-supplier relationships in a cross cultural context and sustainability in the supply chains. These are reflected in the following projects:

  1. Agricultural supply chain management and cooperatives: Look at the roles assumed by cooperatives in the supply chain helping smallholder farmers to access to market and achieving sustainability and competitiveness at the same time.
  2. E-commerce in Agriculture: Investigate the e-commerce ecosystem as a supply chain innovation which changes what a company can offer to the customers and also cross-border e-commerce and poverty alleviation through e-commerce
  3. Global sourcing (Global Sourcing/IPO project): this is an extension of my PhD project. International Procurement Office is under researched but increasingly important area of research in global sourcing literature. A second phase of this project is planned; large grants are to be applied for.
  4. Sustainable supply chain management (WWF projects): this is to understand how MNCs mobilize resources and create green supply chains in China.
  5. Supply chain learning (SCL) (PhD project title: “Cultural adaptation between western buyers and Chinese suppliers”). Cultural adaptation is also seen as a mitigating strategy against supply relational risk caused by cultural differences. This interest is further developed through the PhD project with Yu Gong.

All three areas are interrelated and under an umbrella research area of ‘Global supply chain management’.

Research projects

  1. WWF Chinese Climate Savers Chinese Innovation Case Studies: as PI (2010-2014)
    We are commissioned by WWF (World Wide Fund for Nature) to carry out this project on innovation solutions for Green house gas reduction based on 10 MNCs subsidiaries and 2 Chinese newly recruited climate savers in China (Nokia Siemens Network, Tetra Pak, Fairmont Hotels, Lafarge, Sony, Volvo, HP, and SKF).
  2. International Procurement Office (IPO) project as PI (2010-2014)
    This project is centrally funded by the business school. I am the Primary Investigator for this project, carrying out all the fieldwork, analysis and writing. We have been collaborating with Professor Guido Nassimbeni and Dr. Marco Sartor at the University of Udine on this project. Jeff has been working with Cummins, Phillips, Mothercare, IKEA, Domino and Danieli among other 14 MNCs.
  3. 3D printing enabled supply chain (2012-2013)
    The project is jointly funded by Chartered Institute of Transport and Logistics (£7.5k) and Bridging the Gap (£7.5k). This is collaboration with Choc Edge, a spin-off company at Exeter.

Research Grants

I have generated in total over £500,000 external funding from various sources as Primary Investigator (PI) so far.

  • Newton Caldas Institutional Link with Colombia valued £300k including match fund from Colombia: work with University Los Andes to carry out a research project on ‘Agricultural supply chain management  for dairy and flower industries’
  • Newton Mobility grant with Stellenbosch University in South Africa valued £10k building research links with Dr. Scott Drimie, Director of Southern African Food Lab at Stellenbosch
  • Newton Mobility grant with PUCPR in Brazil valued £10k (CI)
  • Leverhulme Visiting Professor grant (PI) valued £28k inviting Prof. Zhaohui Wu (Oregon State) over to Exeter for three months working with me on ‘Agricultural resource management’ project and help develop ‘Sustainable supply management’ module in which I am the module leader for the OPMBA.
  • WWF project: A fund of £42k has been raised by me (PI) from WWF (WWF phase 1, 2 & 3 projects), which is match funded by the university. The total value of the grant is: £80k
  • Tetra Pak China has given us £14k to do a contract research project at our discretion
  • 3D chocolate printing supply chain project: CILT and BTG jointly funded the project ‘3D chocolate printing supply chain’ valued £16k (PI).
  • Seed Corn fund from the University of Exeter Business School valued £10k for the IPO project. (2010 & 2011)
  • University of Exeter Outward Mobility Fellowship for three consecutive years (2010, 2011 & 2012) valued £5k for each year.
  • ERASMUS Teaching Mobility award for teaching at the University of Udine, Italy from European Union (2011 and 2012) valued £5k for each year


Awards and Honours

  • Howard, M., Wu, Zhaohui, Jia, F. (2015). “Exploring triadic dynamics between government, OEMs and suppliers: Performance based contracting in the UK defense industry.” Academy of Management annual conference 2015, August 7-11, Vancouver, Canada (Selected as one of the finalists for best paper award for OM division)
  • Orzes, G., Jia, F., Sartor, M. and Nassembeni, G. (2015). “Does social accountability pay off? An empirical investigation on the performance impact of SA8000.” 22nd International Annual EurOMA Conference, 26 June - 1 July 2015, Neuchâtel, Switzerland (Selected as The Chris Voss Highly Commended Award or runner-up  for the best paper at the conference out of over 400 papers presented).
  • Jia, F., Wu, Z. and Gosling, J. (2013). “Tetra Pak: Sustainable Initiatives in China.” The Case Centre (formerly ECCH). Selected runner-up for the ‘Best teaching case award’ by Decision Sciences conference 2013 (Baltimore, USA).

External positions

  • 2015-present: Visiting Professor at Centre for Agricultural and Rural Development, (CARD), Zhejiang University (top 3 university), China
  • 2016-present: Associate Editor, Journal of Purchasing and Supply Management (Impact Factor: 2.56)
  • 2016-present: Managing Editor, International Food and Agribusiness Management Review (IFAMR)
  • 2016-present: Executive Committee Member of the International Purchasing and Supply Education and Research Association (IPSERA)

Membership to several academic and professional associations

  • MCIPS (Member of Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply)
  • FHEA (Fellow of Higher Education Academy)
  • Member of IACMR (International Association of Chinese Management Research)
  • Member of British Academy of Management (BAM)
  • Member of Asia Academy of Management 
  • Member of International Purchasing and Supply Education and Research Association (IPSERA)


  • Reviewer for International Journal of Operations & Production Management, Journal of Cleaner Production; International Business Review; Human Relations; British Journal of Management; Industrial Marketing Management; International Journal of Production Economics; International Journal of Logistics Management; European Management Review; Sustainability; Decision Science Journal

Conference chair

  • Conference chair for Business, Nature and Value research centre annual conference 2014, 2015 and 2016.
  • Track chairs for LRN and IPSERA conferences in 2012 and 2013

  • Assumed the module lead for BEMM169 ‘Global sourcing and logistics management’ for MSc IM and MBAM817 ‘Sustainable supply management’ for OPMBA;
  • Designed the new module ‘Global sourcing and logistics management’.
  • The “Tetra Pak: sustainable initiatives in China” (Jia et al., 2013) was published at ECCH case centre in 2013 and selected one of the 3 finalists for Decision Sciences Institute (DSI) conference 2013 (Baltimore, USA) ‘Best teaching case award’ competing with one case by Wharton business school and INSEAD academics; the other by Boston University School of Management academics. We are the only non-US competitor among the 3 finalists.
  • Jia, F., Wu, Z. and Gosling, J. (2013). Tetra Pak: Sustainable initiatives in China. ECCH case centre, Cranfield, UK
  • The “Nestlé: Sourcing Strategy in China.” (Jia et al., 2014) was submitted to EFMD teaching case competition in the summer of 2013 and will be published in 2014.
  • Jia, F., Jia, F., Wu, Z. and Gosling, J. (2013). Nestlé: Sourcing Strategy in China. ECCH case centre, Cranfield, UK

Guest lectures

  • Delivered one-day guest lecture for the ‘Purchasing & supply master class’ of European Institute of Purchasing Management (France) MBA programme in December, 2012;
  • Delivered a session on ‘Case study method’ to economics faculty of Minzu University in China in June, 2013 and similar sessions to Tianjin and Minzu Universities in China in the last few years (all elite universities in China).

Administrative roles

  • Member of UKBA compliance committee representing business school academics and tier 2 visa holders of the universities
  • Co-director for MSc International SCM (with CEMPS)