Accessibility statement

Professor Peter Ball
Chair of Operations Management



Peter Ball is Professor of Operations Management.  Peter joined the School for Business and Society in January 2016 from Cranfield University where he was Director of Education for his school.

His research focuses on how operations can be designed and improved. Application areas span manufacturing, supply chain and service. There are two strands to his work. First, the research takes a ‘hard’ view of processes by developing and applying modelling and simulation techniques to understand performance. Second, the research takes a ‘soft’ view of processes by creating and capturing methods and practices that underpin performance. Environmental sustainability and resource efficiency feature strongly.

Peter has published this work in numerous papers globally in journals, conferences and practitioner publications. As a result of this he has co-chaired three international conferences.

He has delivered short courses on manufacturing to the banking sector with Make UK, sits on the IET Design & Production Sector panel executive and is judge for the EEF and IET awards. He is a Chartered Engineer (IET) and Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. 

Departmental roles

Director of Business and Community Engagement



Peter has won, led and supported many technology transfer programmes with local industry directly or through the use of Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) programmes on projects ranging from business process improvement projects, manufacturing simulation, sustainable manufacturing and supply chain developments.  Peter was recruited as a Supply Chain Counsellor by Scottish Enterprise to work with electronics companies to improve their business performance through benchmarking and focused bottom line improvement programmes.

Recent work has been funded through the UK’s EPSRC and Innovate UK (formerly TSB) on service simulation and sustainable manufacturing, notably in for the Through-life Energy and Resource Modelling (THERM) project and the EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing (CIM) in Industrial Sustainability.

A recurrent theme of this work is the development of best practice models and transfer of these to industry through methodologies and practices. 

Research areas

Key words that describe his research and work with industry include: modelling and simulation, sustainable manufacturing practices, industrial eco-efficiency, energy modelling, performance improvement, supply chain practice diffusion.

Research projects

Environmental footprint reduction in aspiring breweries through good practice awareness: Funded by BREF (Brewers' Research and Education Fund), this project runs 2016-2017 to promote ways of reducing the environmental impact of operations across a network of brewers. The project will create awareness of effective practices, collate barriers to their adoption and generate good practices to support brewer adoption of environmental principles. With Professor Jill MacBryde.

Local food supply chain resilience: The Brexit Effect. Funded by the N8 Research Partnership and led by University of Lancaster, this pump-priming project aims to conduct a preliminary investigation of measures (including social issues through the employment of local people; environmental issues through potential supply network changes to reduce food miles; and economic issues by retaining the circulation of funds within the local community) and to cultivate a network of appropriate industrial and multidisciplinary academic collaborators to further develop the research into a longitudinal study.  With Professor Jill MacBryde.

Research supervision

Recent masters and doctoral research work includes: sustainable manufacturing tactics, barriers to industrial energy efficiency, simulation modelling of maintenance systems, lean adoption in maintenance repair and overhaul, product health monitoring for servitisation, sustainable manufacturing practices, modelling eco-efficiency performance, diffusion of sustainability practices into the supply chain and reverse logistics archetype maturity.                


Selected publications

Journal Publications (since 2010)

  1. Alabdulkarim, A., Ball, P.D. & Tiwari, A. (2015) Assessing asset monitoring levels for maintenance operations: A simulation approach, Journal Manufacturing Technology Management, Vol. 26, No. 5, pp. 632-659. ISSN 1741-038X.
  2. Ball, P.D. (2015) Low energy production impact on lean flow, Journal Manufacturing Technology Management, Vol. 26, No. 3, pp. 412-428. ISSN 1741-038X.
  3. Lunt, P., Ball, P. & Levers, A. 2014. Barriers to industrial energy efficiency, International Journal of Energy Sector Management, Vol. 8, No. 3, pp. 380-394. ISSN 1750-6220. Awarded Emerald “Highly Commended Paper”.
  4. Alabdulkarim, A., Ball, P.D. & Tiwari, A. 2014. Influence of Resources on Maintenance Operations with Different Asset monitoring levels: A Simulation Approach, Business Process Management Journal, Vol. 20, No. 2, pp. 195-212. ISSN 1463-7154.
  5. Alabdulkarim, A., Ball, P.D. & Tiwari, A. 2013. Applications of simulation in maintenance research, World Journal of Modelling and Simulation, Vol. 9, No. 1, pp. 14-37. ISSN 1746 7233.
  6. Despeisse, M., Oates, M.R. & Ball, P.D. 2013. Sustainable manufacturing tactics and cross-functional factory modelling, Journal Cleaner Production, Vol. 42, pp. 31-41. DOI: 10.1016/j.jclepro.2012.11.008.
  7. McBeath, A. and Ball, P.D. 2012. Towards a framework for transferring technology knowledge between facilities, Strategic Outsourcing: An International Journal, Vol. 5, No. 3, pp.213-231. DOI 10.1108/17538291211291756.
  8. Despeisse, M., Ball, P.D. Evans, S. & Levers, A. 2012. Industrial ecology at factory level: a prototype methodology, Proceedings of the IMechE Part B, Journal of Engineering Manufacture. Vol. 226, No. 10, pp. 1648-1664. DOI: 10.1177/0954405412449937.
  9. Smith, L. & Ball, P.D. 2012. Steps towards sustainable manufacturing through modelling material, energy and waste flows, International Journal of Production Economics, Vol. 140, No. 1, pp. 227-238. DOI: 10.1016/j.ijpe.2012.01.036.
  10. Baines, T., Brown, S., Benedettinni, O. & Ball, P.D. 2012. Examining green production and its role within the competitive strategy of manufacturers, Journal of Industrial Engineering and Management.  Vol. 5, No. 1, pp. 53-87. 10.3926/jiem.405.
  11. Despeisse, M., Ball, P.D. Evans, S. & Levers, A. 2012. Industrial ecology at factory level – a conceptual model, Journal of Cleaner Production, Vol. 31, No. 3-4, pp. 30-39. DOI: 10.1016/j.jclepro.2012.02.027.
  12. Despeisse, M., Mbaye, F., Ball, P.D. & Levers, A. 2012. Emergence of sustainable manufacturing practices, Production Planning and Control, Vol. 23, No. 5, pp. 354-376.  DOI:10.1080/09537287.2011.555425.
  13. Ayeni, P., Baines, T., Lightfoot, H. & Ball, P.D. 2011. State-of-the-art of ‘Lean’ in the Aviation Maintenance Repair Overhaul Industry (MRO), IMechE Part B, Journal of Engineering Manufacture, Vol. 225, No. 11, pp. 2108-2123. DOI: 10.1177/0954405411407122.
  14. Ball, P.D., Roberts, S., Natalicchio, A. & Scorzafave, C. 2011. Modelling production ramp-up of engineering products, Proceedings of the IMechE Part B Journal of Engineering Manufacture, Vol. 225, No. 6, pp.959-971. DOI: 10.1177/09544054JEEM2071.
  15. Tjahjono, B., Ball, P.D., Vitanov, V., Scorzafave, C., Nogueira, J., Calleja, J., Minguet, M., Narasimha, L., Rivas, A., Srivastava, A. & Yadav, A. 2010. Six Sigma: a review of literature, International Journal of Lean Six Sigma, Vol. 1, Issue 3, pp. 216-233. DOI 10.1108/20401461011075017.
  16. Smith, M., Ball, P.D., Bititci, U.S. & van der Meer, R. 2010. Transforming mass production contact centres using approaches from manufacturing, Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, Vol. 21, No. 4, pp.433-448. DOI 10.1108/17410381011046562. (Emerald Literati Network Highly Commended Award Winner, 2011)

Insights / White papers

  1. Ball, P.D. 2015 Sustainable manufacturing: leading change, IET Sector Insight.
  2. Ball, P.D. & Jolly, M. 2015 Sustainable Manufacturing for the Future: Investigating the current and future landscape across the food and drink industry in Great Britain, white paper for Coca-Cola Enterprises.
  3. Ball, P.D. 2013 Sustainable manufacturing: starting the journey, IET Sector Insight. 2/10/13.


School for Business and Society
University of York
Church Lane Building
York Science Park
York YO10 5ZF

Telephone: +44 (0) 1904 325302
Room: CL/A/110

Twitter: @p_d_ball

Subject Group

People, Operations and Marketing