Cardiff Business School People

Professor Helen Walker

Professor of Operations and Supply Management
Director of Postgraduate Research Studies

+44 (0)29 208 76570
B50/C50, Aberconway Building, Colum Drive, Cardiff, CF10 3EU

Helen is a Professor of Operations and Supply Management and Director of Postgraduate Research Studies at Cardiff Business School. Her main research interests are sustainable procurement, sustainable supply chain management, collaborative procurement and supply strategy.

She is President of the International Purchasing and Supply Education and Research Association. She has been a member of the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply Sustainable / Responsible Procurement Group, and the cross-government Sustainable Procurement Task Force.

Helen has provided advice, conducted research or participated in policy-making on sustainable procurement issues with public sector bodies such as the United Nations, NHS PASA, local government and DEFRA, and with private firms such as PepsiCo and Boots. She leads the LOM section’s research strategy, PhD programme, Awayday programme, seminar series, and journal club. She has previously been Deputy Head of Section at both CRiSPS, University of Bath School of Management and the OM Group, Warwick Business School.

Helen is a Research Affiliate of the Sustainable Places Research Institute at Cardiff University interested in Sustainable Supply Chain Management


  • Doctor of Philosophy, University of Bath School of Management
  • MSc Occupational Psychology, School of Psychology, Cardiff University
  • BSc (Hons) Psychology, Goldsmiths College, University of London

Teaching commitments

  • MBA Strategic Operations Management
  • MBA Purchasing and Supply Chain Management
  • UG Year 3 Strategic Supply Management

Research interests

  • Corporate social responsibility
  • Ethical issues in SCM
  • Global supply chains
  • Outsourcing, off-shoring and in-sourcing
  • Purchasing and supply chain management
  • Sustainable procurement
  • Sustainable supply chain management
  • Supply strategy
  • Theoretical approaches to operations management

Helen has led the following projects

Sustainable Supply Chain Management

7 May 2012 to 6 May 2015

Sponsored by Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC)

Led by Professor Helen Walker with Mr Anthony Alexander

Award type: ESRC Management and Business Development Fellowship

PhD supervision research interests

  • Corporate social responsibility in supply chains
  • Procurement
  • Strategic purchasing and supply
  • Sustainable supply chain management
  • Theoretical perspectives in OM

Tackling poverty through the Welsh supply chain

Monday 24 October 2016

Cardiff Business School recently held a full day Public Value workshop, looking at how the Welsh supply chain can help to address one of society’s greatest challenges, poverty.

Professor Helen Walker to become first female president of IPSERA

Monday 19 May 2014

The Logistics Operations and Management section at the School are delighted to announce that Professor Helen Walker has been appointed President of the International Purchasing and Supply Education and Research Association (IPSERA) becoming the first female president in its 25 year history.

Grant secured to measure impact of Academic Health Science Network

Wednesday 12 February 2014

The West of England Academic Health Science Network (WEAHSN) has awarded a research grant to Cardiff Business School of £250,000 over 5 years to design and implement a framework for evidencing the value of its network.

Awards and scholarships

  • Public Administration Review 2014 Louis Brownlow Award: Walker, H., Schotanus, F., Bakker, E., & Harland, C. (2013) “Collaborative Procurement: A Relational View of Buyer-Buyer Relationships, Vol. 73, Issue 4, 588-598
  • IPSERA Conference Nantes 2013 IFPSM Best Paper Relevant to Practice Award: Touboulic, A. & Walker, H. 'Sensemaking In Sustainable Supply Chains: Exploring Inter-organisational Processes and Meanings Through Stakeholders' Perspective'
  • Supply Chain Management: An International Journal. Highly Commended Literati Award: Walker, H. & Jones, N. (2012) Sustainable supply chain management across the UK private sector, Vol 17, Issue 1, 15-28.
  • International Journal of Operations & Production Management. Outstanding Paper Literati Award: Brammer, S. & Walker, H. (2011) Sustainable procurement in the public sector: an international comparative study, Vol 31, Issue 4, 452-476.
  • Public Administration Review 2012 Louis Brownlow Award: Schotanus, F., Bakker, E., Walker, H. & Eßig, M. (2011) Development of Purchasing Groups During Their Life Cycle: From Infancy to Maturity, Vol. 71, Issue 2, 265-275.
  • IPSERA Conference Wiesbaden 2009 Best Paper Award: Walker, H. Sustainable procurement; a literature review.
  • Journal of Purchasing and Supply Management 2008 Best Paper Award: Walker, H., Di Sisto, L., & McBain, D. (2008) Drivers and barriers of environmental supply chain practices: lessons from the public and private sectors, Vol 14, No 1, pp 69-85.
  • International Public Procurement Conference Fort Lauderdale 2004 Best Manuscript Award: Caldwell, N., Walker, H., Harland, C., Knight, L., & J. Zheng (2004) Promoting Competitive Markets: The role of public procurement. 

Editorial work

Journal Editorial Boards 

  • Journal of Operations Management
  • Public Administration Review
  • Journal of Purchasing and Supply Management
  • Journal of Supply Chain Management 

Special Issues

  • Journal of Purchasing and Supply Management, IPSERA Special Issue, March 2008
  • Journal of Purchasing and Supply Management, Special Issue on sustainable procurement, Vol 18, 2012
  • International Journal of Operations and Production Management, Special issue on sustainable OM, Vol 5, 2014


  • Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply
  • Academy of Management