EngD Studentship Benchmarking Towards High Value, Low Impact Manufacturing and the Path to Excellence

PhD project Title:  WMG and the IMechE are seeking a top class candidate to undertake research leading to the award of an International Engineering Doctorate from the University of Warwick.

As a ‘Research Entrepreneur’ on our International Doctorate programme you will have unrivalled access to some of the best teaching and industrial expertise in the world.  You will emerge from the four-year programme more confident and better equipped to make a difference to your company and the global marketplace. 

This opportunity also provides a substantial tax free stipend equivalent to many graduate jobs.


The research challenge for this project is how to move companies to High Value, Low Impact Manufacturing with benchmarking as the starting point.  This will entail learning from and supporting the MX Quality Award assessments operated by the IMechE, working with the Manufacturing Advisory Service (MAS) on business support and looking to add knowledge/innovation to the subject area of how companies can move to high value, low impact excellence.

Background and Scope

In 1994, Voss et al reported on the competitiveness of European manufacturing, known as ‘The Made in Europe’ study.  The objectives of this study included identifying how many manufacturing sites were operating at or near world-class standard and to understand the impact of adopting best practices on performance.       

The practices and performance stated in the WCM definition were based on the six following areas: Total Quality; Concurrent Engineering; Lean Production; Manufacturing Systems; Logistics; Organization and Culture.                                                

Also Read  PhD Studentship Surface engineering of advanced steels

The central hypothesis in the ‘Made in Europe’ study was that implementing best practice directly results in achieving a high level of performance.  The study proved there was a correlation between practices and performance.  Given the ambiguity of the methodology of the study, it is difficult to validate this finding, however it raises an interesting point regarding excellence and whether it is something to be identified by practices or by performance or by both. 

Entry Requirements


Candidates should have a minimum of an upper second (2.1) honours degree (or equivalent) in an engineering or related discipline.

 A numerate subject (e.g. engineering) or related field (e.g. mathematics, physics).


  • High levels of innovative thought and lateral thinking
  • Excellent analytical and reporting skills
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Strong computer skills and the ability to learn new software quickly
  • Self-motivated, capable of working with minimal guidance and supervision, and within a team.
  • Enthusiasm for the subject

Awards available: 1 award available

Funding Details:  

Qualifying students receive an attractive enhanced stipend which could be tax and NI free depending on your personal circumstances, paid by the International Doctorate Centre and topped up by a contribution from the IMechE . For 2012 this totals approximately £19,000 tax free per annum.

The funding is for four years and will also cover University tuition fees and all course fees as well as a travel allowance to attend courses.

Length of Award:  4 years (EngD)

Eligibility:  The regulations regarding EPSRC funding require that applicants should be UK or EU citizens to be eligible for full EPSRC funding.

Deadline:  31st January 2013


To apply please contact us at engd@warwick.ac.uk or phone us on 024 765 24357

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *