Dr Louise Knight

Louise Knight

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I joined London Underground (LU) as a graduate trainee in purchasing and supply in 1987, and soon qualified as a Member of the CharteredInstitute of Purchasing and Supply (CIPS).  I then held various HR development roles at London Transport until 1992, when I took on responsibility for training, developing and assessing all contracting and materials management personnel at LU.


My part-time MPhil studies at the University of Bath’s Centre for Research in Strategic Purchasing and Supply (CRiSPS) inspired me to move into research, and in 1996 I joined CRiSPS as a Research Officer.  On completing my part-time PhD studies in 2002, I was appointed Research Fellow and Deputy Director of CRiSPS.  In 2005, I was appointed Senior Research Fellow, and worked on ESRC-EPSRC Advanced Institute of Management funded research on collaborative management research with Professor Andrew Pettigrew.

At CRiSPS, I was involved in a wide range of projects, in particular the research partnership with the NHS Purchasing and Supply Agency.  Other funders included the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply, UK research councils – EPSRC and ESRC, and GS1UK (formerly e-centre).  I was a founder member of the International Study on Public Procurement and co-ordinator of its first workshop. I undertook various advisory roles with the NHS Purchasing and Supply Agency and the wider NHS, the Office of Government Commerce, and the CharteredInstitute of Purchasing and

Research interests

Purchasing and supply management

  • Public procurement from a strategy and policy perspective.  In particular, the relationship between public purchasing practices and innovation, supply markets and supplier competitiveness.
  • Purchasing capability – understanding what companies need and developing purchasing skills and knowledge

Strategic change in complex interorganizational networks and interorganizational collaboration, particularly in relation to supply, innovation and sustainability

  • Network learning – learning by groups of organizations as a group.  Building on the concept of organizational learning, investigating how complex interorganizational networks develop and change over time.
  • Network leadership – a critical perspective on leadership in/of complex interorganizational networks
  • Collaborative research in management and the social sciences – two forms: international collaborations amongst academics, and ‘co-production research’ in which practitioners actively participate in the research process working with academic researchers

Teaching Activity

Module tutor for MSc programmes (Engineering Management, Industrial Enterprise Management, Supply Chain Management):

  • EM4002 Strategic Management
  • EM 4030 Purchasing Strategy, Management and Process

 Module tutor for final year undergraduate programmes (Logistics, Construction Management, Construction Project Management):


  • LT3316 Purchasing and Strategy

Lecturing on qualitative research methods for MSc Research Methods module (EM4019), and final year BSc students (LT3317)



  • BSc Logistics final year projects
  • MSc research projects
  • PhD students


Doctor of Philosophy, University of Bath School of Management, September 2002

Master of Philosophy, University of Bath School of Management, October 1997

BSc (Hons) Geology, University of Southampton, 1986

Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Authority, 2016

Certificate in Learning and Teaching, Aston University, June 2009

Post-graduate Diploma in Purchasing and Supply, Polytechnic of North London, 1989


  • 2017 to date: Reader in Supply Strategy & Systems, Aston University
  • 2007 – 2017: Senior Lecturer, Aston University
  • 1994 – 2007: University of Bath – Research Officer to Senior Research Fellow; Deputy Director of Centre for Research in Strategic Purchasing and Supply (May 2003-Jan 2005)
  • 1987 – 1996: Industrial experience, various roles within London Underground and related companies, in purchasing and HRM

Membership of Professional Bodies

Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply, since 2012

Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy

Member of International Purchasing and Supply Education and Research Association (IPSERA) since 1994.

Member of the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply (CIPS) 1987-2012

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Engineering & Applied Science

Organisational unit: School

  1. Quality and integrity in purchasing and supply management research

    Research output: Contribution to journalEditorial

  2. Scenario-driven roadmapping for technology foresight

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  3. A year at the helm: reflecting on roles, responsibilities and progress

    Research output: Contribution to journalEditorial

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  1. British Academy of Management Conference 2012 PDW

    Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesParticipation in workshop, seminar, course

  2. CIPS Qualifications Review 2013 Expert Group

    Activity: Other activity typesTypes of Business and Community - Work on advisory panel to industry or government or non-government organisation

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Employable Graduates; Exploitable Research

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