Portrait photograph of: Timo Kunz

Timo Kunz

Country Of Origin: Germany

Degree: PhD Management Science, 2013

Data Scientist, Morrison Supermarkets

Tell us about your PhD…

I am part of the Management Science department within the Management School. I initially started part time but then took my research full time after six months, so I am in my second year now. My research is about price optimization in retail and in particular about how the demand for a product and its category can be modelled within this context. I love that the topic is very tangible and that it is highly relevant for real life applications. I also enjoy that it combines aspects of statistics, business and computing and that it involves juggling huge amounts of data with millions or sometimes even billions of records.

How did you identify potential supervisors for your PhD?

It was important to me to contact and get to know my supervisor in advance. When I started looking for a PhD programme, I already had a pretty good idea what I wanted to do, so I got in touch with potential supervisors which I hoped would be interested in the topic. Everyone I contacted was very responsive and willing to help. I contacted researchers and schools worldwide but the interest and the proactive approach of my supervisor here in Lancaster was one of the main reasons why I started studying here.

Why did you choose Lancaster for your PhD?

My supervisor was the most important reason. However, I would have not come if I would have not been entirely convinced about the programme, the school as well as the location. A PhD lasts three years or longer. For such a long term commitment, I feel it is extremely important to be entirely comfortable with one’s personal and professional situation, surrounding and life in general.

What do you feel is the best aspect of studying at Lancaster?

The school has a great infrastructure and there is just so much being offered. Everyone is approachable and helpful. Further, the city is very safe and cosy and has a good size – of course it is not London, but here, a student budget goes a long way and it is very easy to meet people and get to know everyone and everything.