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Professor Martin Spring


Martin Spring

Lancaster University

The Management School



Tel: +44 1524 592739


B.Tech (Hons); D.M.S., Ph.D.


My research has contributed to and shaped three prominent themes in Operations Management over the past twenty-five years. Most recently, my work has been in business service operations; this built on work in the other two areas, supply chain management and operations strategy. I am also Director of the cross-disciplinary Centre for Productivity & Efficiency at LUMS.

In 2008 I was awarded a Services Fellowship by AIM (Advanced Institute for Management Research ), focussing on Business Models for Business-to-Business Services. This led to a number of publications, both theoretical and empirical, as well as guest editorships of two special issues: one in The Journal of Supply Chain Management, on Service Supply Chains (with Scott Sampson – Volume 48, Issue 4) and one in the Journal of Operations Management on Service Triads (with Finn Wynstra and Tobias Schoenherr – Volume 35, Issue 1).  I also carried out a study on emerging Business Models for manufacturing as part of the UK Government Foresight project on The Future of Manufacturing. This subsequently led to work (with Alan Hughes and Katy Mason) on industrial policy, published in the Journal of Operations Management in 2017.

I have supervised PhD students in various areas of operations management, especialy in business-to-business services. I am interested in supervising more students in this area.

I am an Associate Editor of the International Journal of Operations and Production Management, the Journal of Supply Chain Management, and the Journal of Operations Management (2015- present). I am also an Editorial Board Member, Journal of Purchasing and Supply Management, and served as an ESRC CASE Studentship Panel Member (2005-2008), and ESRC Peer Review College member (2010-present). I am a member of the Board of the European Operations Management Association (EurOMA).

Research Interests

  • Business-to-Business Services - Operations and Supply Aspects
  • Business Models and Operations Strategy
  • Industrial policy
  • Productivity
  • Research Methods in Operations and Supply Management


Current Research

Four issues within business-to-business services are of current special interest:

  • the institutional basis of products and services
  • service interfaces and modularity
  • service triads and service supply chains
  • coordination in multi-organisation service networks

I am also working on the  linkages between operations management and industrial policy.

Current Teaching

  • Operations Management (Full-time MBA)
  • MSCI 571 - Strategic Supply Chain Management
  • MSCI 281 - Supply Chain Management


Research Grants

ESRC/EPSRC AIM Fellowship in Services (2008-2010) on "Business Models for Business-to-Business Services"

External Roles

Univerity of Stirling: External Examiner for the MSc in Management (2013-2014)

Heriot-Watt University: External Examiner for undergraduate programmes in operations management subject areas 2007-2010

ESRC CASE Studentship Panel Member 2003-2007

ESRC Peer Review College Member 2010- present

Associate Editor Journal of Operations Management

Associate Editor Journal of Supply Chain Management

Associate Editor International Journal of Operations & Production Management

Editorial Board Member Journal of Purchasing and Supply Management

Board Member - European Operations Management Association (EurOMA)

Professional Role

Director, Centre for Productivity & Efficiency

Impact Director, Department of Management Science

Co-ordinator of the Operations Management Research Group (LUMS-OMG)

PhDs Examined

PhD External Examination

PhD (Cranfield School of Management) Antonios Karatzas, ‘Business triads in servitization: the influence of the provider-partner relationship on the performance of the partner towards the provider’s customer base’, March 4th 2013 

PhD (Warwick Business School) Emmanouil Alvizos ‘Servitization strategies and firm boundary decisions’, December 10th 2012

PhD (Cranfield School of Management) Marko Bastl “An exploration of a manager’s openness and relationship transparency in a buyer-supplier relationship” 17th February 2012

PhD (Jonköping International Business School, Sweden) Lianguang Cui, “Innovation and network development of logistics firms” 9th January 2012

PhD (Swinburne, Australia), Nicholas Grigoriou “Modelling the packaged food product customisation-standardisation decision for China”, July 2011 (written exam only)

PhD (Cranfield School of Management) Simon Templar “An empirical investigation into the role played by contextual variables in determining a transfer price for an intermediate product within an FMCG organisation” 31st October 2011

PhD (Stirling Management School), Alireza Khorakian “Developing a conceptual framework for integrating risk management in the innovation project”, 4th April 2011

PhD (Cambridge University, Centre for Strategy and Performance), Shellyanne Wilson, ‘Manufacturing Flexibility: Achieving Mix Flexibility in the Caribbean Flour Milling Industry’, November 2007

PhD (Leeds Metropolitan University, Faculty of Business and Law), Jens Neu, ‘An Empirical Evaluation of Logistical Concepts for Supply Chain Collaboration’, March 1st 2007

PhD (Leeds University Business School),Yong Rae Kim “Technology acquisition strategy and firm performance in the Korean information technology industry” September 2004

Doctoral Thesis, Facultad de Economía y Empresa, University of Salamanca: Member of doctoral comision for Javier González-Benito, ‘Aprovisionamiento en Entornos Just-in-Time: Prácticas y Factores Determinantes en la Industria Española de Fabricantes de Componentes de Automoción’ (Just-in-Time Purchasing: Practices and Determining Factors in the Spanish Automotive Component Supply Sector), 3rd December 1999

PhD Internal Examination

PhD (Lancaster University, Department of Management Science), Fahian Huq, ‘Social sustainability implementation in global supply chains’, 16th October 2014

PhD (Lancaster University, Department of Management Science) Chris Wright, ‘Complex Procurement within Complex Organisations: the Case of Radiology Equipment in the UK National Health Service, 17th April 2012

PhD (Lancaster University, Dept of Marketing) Juanjuan Ou, “Identity constructions of sales managers: the Chinese Guanxi Milieu”, November 2011

PhD (Lancaster University, Department of Marketing), Markus Vanharanta, “Customer Portfolio Management: A Study of Managerial Decision-Making in an Industrial Marketing Context”, February 2008

PhD (Lancaster University, Department of Management Science), Mark Stevenson, “Bridging the Gap: Refining a workload control (WLC) concept for practical implementation”, December 2005

PhD (MSM, UMIST), Elizabeth Ritchie, ‘Re-engineering the Pharmaceutical Supply-Chain in Hospital Pharmacy: an Assessment of Practice in the National Health Service’, December 2002

PhD (MSM, UMIST),: Jaime Darby, ‘The Design, Evolution and Implementation of an Integrated Transport Management System’, 15th June 2001

PhD (Total Technology Dept, UMIST), Robert Barker, 'Measuring Value-Adding Performance (A Framework for Analysis)', March 21st 1997


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