Doctoral student writing

Measuring and assessing impact of cash and voucher distribution in humanitarian aid

  • School: Nottingham Business School
  • Starting: 2018
  • Funding: UK student / EU student (non-UK) / International student (non-EU) / Self-funded


For decades the humanitarian sector has relied on providing material assistance to beneficiaries during disaster relief. These days there is a growing importance in the provision of cash and vouchers that can be exchanged for goods as needed. This can help stimulate local market activity and restart livelihoods. The objective of this project is to quantitatively determine the impact of cash and voucher distribution in refugee situations using the recent influx of Syrian refugees in Turkey as a case study. The PhD project is part of an RCUK funded project performed jointly by leading universities in Turkey and in the UK. The project is aimed at developing a framework on how to monitor, measure and assess the impact of our cash and voucher distribution on stakeholders, including ao. beneficiaries, local suppliers, donors, banks and other system providers, logistics services providers, government. For this purpose we aim to apply system dynamics as a method.

The first phase of the PhD project is aimed at investigating literature on cash and voucher distribution and analyzing the current refugee situation in Turkey through conducting interviews with agencies in the field on the current refugee situation in Turkey and on disasters in Turkey in the past. Findings from phase 1 are used to develop metrics to identify the short and long term success of cash and voucher distribution. The project will build on existing models developed by the project team for supporting the measurement of success in humanitarian supply chain management. In the PhD project data will be collected on these metrics, which will then be used in phase 3 to develop a system dynamics model that captures the dynamics of cash and voucher distribution and measures the impact on relevant stakeholders. This will also result in a framework to collect, measure and assess the impact for other humanitarian relief situations.

The PhD student will become part of an international team of renowned scholars. Being accustomed to working in an international team is an absolute must. We set high academic standards for the successful candidate for this position. The successful candidate possesses strong analytical skills in simulation and optimization and preferably has had exposure to dynamic modeling using e.g. Vensim. She has demonstrated experience in working on applied problems in supply chain management. The successful candidate has a Master degree in Supply Chain Management, Operations Research, Econometrics, Industrial/Management Engineering, Management Sciences or similar.


Professor Sander de Leeuw

Entry qualifications

An applicant for admission to read for a PhD should normally hold a first or upper second class honours degree of a UK university or an equivalent qualification, or a lower second class honours degree with a Master's degree at Merit level of a UK university or an equivalent qualification.

International students will also need to meet the English language requirements - IELTS 6.5 (with minimum sub-scores of 6.0). Applicants who have taken a higher degree at a UK university are normally exempt from the English language requirements. A research proposal (between 1,000 and a maximum of 2,000 words) must be submitted as part of the application.

For more information please visit the NTU Doctoral School – Research Degrees webpages.

How to apply

How to apply

Applications are accepted all year round.

Download an application form here.
Please make sure you take a look at our application guidance notes before making your application.

Further information on how to apply can be found on this page.

Fees and funding

This is a self-funded PhD opportunity.

Guidance and support

Further information on guidance and support can be found on this page.

Still need help?

Sander de Leeuw