Enhancing Australian Agriculture Supply Chain Performance through Data Driven Decision Making

Agriculture is a key sector in Australia economy. After coal exports, agriculture products have highest share of export in Australia. Agriculture supply chain encompass farmers, processors, warehouses, distributers (logistics companies) and retailers. Increasing efficiency in agriculture supply chain through supply chain integration and collaboration is receiving high attentions in the recent years.

In Business Analytics lab in Collage of Business at RMIT, we are developing innovative optimisation tools and applications to help improve the efficiency of the agriculture supply chain by considering all parties including government, farmers, intermediates (processors, distributors and retailers) and consumers. Our approach is based on data driven methodologies to carry state of art and cutting-edge research that impact the Australian economy and Australian community. To establish our reputation in agriculture supply chain modelling we have identified the following two key projects for the next three years:

  • Organic agriculture supply chain modelling
  • Farmgate pricing modelling in agriculture

Research Question

  • How the efficiency of organic supply chain can be improved with the aim of data driven decision making?
  • How data driven decision making can result in more efficient farmgate pricing of agriculture commodities to ensure the sustainability and resiliency of the supply chain?

Research Problem

Effective and efficient data driven decision-making models are needed to improve the efficiency of the agriculture supply chain. In this project we look at the modelling of the farmgate price that leads to a sustainable supply chain. The current pricing model is not considering the data and the suitability of the supply chain and it often negatively impacts on farmers or processor, or distributors or consumers. In addition, in this project we provide data driven decision models that help to improve the efficiency of organic agriculture supply chain that is expanding and taking a large share of the market.

Proposed Output

This project will generate innovative market solutions to promote efficiency and suitability of the agriculture supply chain. The decision support tools are developed that can be calibrated to an agriculture system and can be used by agriculture supply chain decision makers as well policy makers at different levels of government.

This project is aligned to the research priority of the Global Business Innovation ECP that will generate innovative supply chain and optimisation models/tools to enhance Organisational transformation and innovation capabilities.

Proposed postgraduate research program

  • School: School of Business IT and Logistics
  • Course code: DR202
  • Program name: PhD (Supply Chain Management)

Value and duration

A stipend of $32,000 per year over the duration of three years.

Number of scholarships available



To be considered for scholarship you must hold, or be currently completing either:

  • Master by research
  • Master by coursework with a significant research component graded as high distinction, or equivalent
  • Honours degree achieving first class honours
  • 4 year bachelor degree achieving a GPA of 4 or equivalent (80% or above).

If you do not hold one of the above qualifications you will only be considered for scholarship if you have previous peer reviewed publications or significant research experience.

Please make sure that you check the individual eligibility requirements of these scholarships prior to submitting your application.

It is also important to note that the scholarship rounds are highly competitive and satisfying the eligibility requirements does not guarantee a successful outcome. When a scholarship round closes all applications are received are ranked in order of merit. This process takes five to six weeks to complete. Applicants are typically advised of the outcome of a scholarship round five to six weeks after the round closes for applications.

How to apply

International applicants need to apply for admission via iApply and ensure that there is an offer in place before submitting a scholarship application via the Google form. Domestic applicants can continue to apply for both admission and scholarship via this PDF form. Domestic applicants who already hold an offer of admission from RMIT for a PhD or Masters by Research program but have not enrolled may apply for a scholarship using the Google form.

Open date

Applications are open until 4 May 2018. International applicants must have an offer of place prior to applying for a scholarship and are encouraged to submit an admission application by 27 April 2018.

Terms and conditions

See the research scholarship terms and conditions (PDF 279KB 10p) for more information.

Supervisory Team/Contact

A/Professor Babak Abbasi

Professor Prem Chhetri

A/Professor Victor Gekara

Contact: babak.abbasi@rmit.edu.au