Integrating quantitative and qualitative data for improved food supply chain analysis


Professor Peter Jackson, Department of Geography | +44 (0)114 2227908


Dr Farida Vis, Information School

Grantham Scholar

Patience Muchada

Many researchers are working on the important subject of food security. However, because of their different backgrounds (disciplines), they tend to work at varying scales using different methods of research. This results in multiple data forms, for example: satellite images showing global agriculture, statistics based on simulations of crop growth using computer models, results from a nationwide survey to find out how much cheese is manufactured each year, transcripts from consumers’ interviews about food choices, or even observation notes and photographs showing food waste. This PhD is about trying to find ways to combine these different data forms, to improve knowledge on food production, processing, marketing and consumption – ie, the food supply chain.

One goal is to find out how rising consumer demand is shaping the supply chain and what innovative solutions food producers are introducing to meet the increase in demand. The project will address the theoretical and practical challenges of linking global data from organisations such as the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation to smaller and local datasets. This knowledge can help to encourage, and improve interdisciplinary research on the subject, resulting in more effective research with implementable results.

Contact: Patience Muchada,