PhD Position in Business Administration Focusing on Market Dynamics, and with Special Attention to Purchasing and the Implementation of New AI Technologies, Admission 2022

The Department of Marketing and Strategy at the Stockholm School of Economics is
pleased to announce a fully funded PhD position, funded by WASP-HS and the
Marianne and Marcus Wallenberg Foundation. The project is part of a research project
on artificial intelligence (AI) as a new strategic imperative led by Professor Per
Andersson. The successful applicant will be part of the Marketing Technology Center
(MTC) at SIR and the SIR Center for the Study of Business Markets under the
supervision of Professors Per Andersson and Hans Kjellberg. The overall research
program that the PhD position is part of is based on a dynamic and actor-centred view
of markets. This directs attention to how different actors seek to alter markets and how
markets actually change as a result of their efforts.

General description

This PhD application is focused on one of the areas where AI applications are expected
to have a very large economic impact now and in the near future; the impact on both
public and private procurement. This research project that the PhD project is part of
aims to contribute to the emerging field of AI research focusing on strategic imperatives:
the business development processes of translating AI generated big data analyses into
value creating services are associated with how AI organization and operations is
functioning, and also the strategic and structural issues including the distribution of
work and control over AI related activities. AI is rapidly becoming a strategic imperative
for any business that wants to gain greater efficiency, new revenue opportunities, and
create customer loyalty. The already started (2021) AI project aims to investigate
business consequences and challenges of AI, with a focus on business strategy, business
models, organization and work, and how they are connected. The empirical aim of the AI
project is to perform comparative case studies of AI practices, re-organization and
strategizing processes in a set of chosen enterprises and industries, which include AI
solutions that are aimed for both public and private users.

In focus are the outcomes of AI development on both effectiveness and customer value,
and on organizational and operational efficiency and profitability. Business enterprises
and public organizations are still in the beginning of adopting a new and complex
technology. It is argued that with AI enterprises can accomplish more in less time, create
personalized and value-based customer solutions and offerings, and predict business
outcomes to drive greater profitability. But analyses of digital transformation projects
show that the challenges are significant, and many of the effects and consequences are
still uncertain.

This PhD position is part of the Wallenberg AI, Autonomous Systems and Software Program on Humanities and Society (WASP-HS) which aims to realize excellent research and develop competence on the consequences and challenges of artificial intelligence and autonomous systems for humanity and society. This 10-year program is initiated and generously funded by the Marianne and Marcus Wallenberg Foundation (MMW) with 660 million SEK. In addition to this, the program receives support from collaborating industry and from participating universities. Major goals are more than 10 new faculty positions and more than 70 new PhDs.

For more information about the research and other activities conducted within WASP-HS, please visit this website.

The WASP-HS graduate school provides foundations, perspectives, and state-of-the-art knowledge in the different disciplines taught by leading researchers in the field. Through an ambitious program with research visits, partner universities, and visiting lecturers, the graduate school actively supports forming a strong multi-disciplinary and international professional network between PhD students, researchers and practitioners in the field. It thus provides added value on top of the existing PhD programs at the partner universities, providing unique opportunities for students who are dedicated to achieving international research excellence with societal relevance.

The PhD project: studying implementation of AI in purchasing

This new PhD project aims to study the development of AI and the specific challenges
associated with AI implementation in purchasing operations. In monetary terms, public
and private procurement operations In Sweden are huge. In 2018 the total value of
Swedish public procurement was estimated at 782 billion SEK or one fifth of GDP.
Procurement in the global, private industry is far bigger. Based on industry information,
more than half of the world's supply chain, procurement and associated professionals
reveal that they are ready to invest in AI over the next coming years, expecting big
opportunities to change - sometimes radically - existing operations, routines, procedures
and organizations involved in public and private procurement. AI is expected to helps
machines learn from purchasing experience, adjust to new inputs, and perform humanlike
tasks in procurement in a way that IT systems in procurement activities haven’t
historically been able to do. In different ways AI has the potential to change procurement
models, helping buyers work smarter, better, and faster. For example, AI is expected to
support the development of smarter procurement processes, support automation of
menial procurement tasks, support better identification of opportunities that deliver
bottom-line impact, and actually help create a bigger role for procurement in general in
both public and private organizations. As for the last point, it is argued that AI may help
position procurement in a more prominent and strategic role in driving business
decisions. Thus, while AI in procurement is expected to save up to 25 percent costs, it is
also expected to create a strategic paradigm shift in procurement.

Investments in AI applications for procurement are essentially driven by expectations of
increased value creation through the change of established procurement models
activities, and the development of completely new operational models that challenge the
established procurement models. Improved competence within AI and data science are
necessary conditions for truly useful AI-based procurement solutions to be developed. It
also requires major changes in the organising and running of purchasing operations. The
competence required to adequately and resource-efficiently implement such
adjustments is based on combining knowledge within AI and data science with
procurement operations specific knowledge and skills in organisational development.
The Swedish industry and the public sector produce huge amounts of data and there is
an untapped potential in these data, which can be utilized with new purchasing tools.

This PhD project aims to put these challenges in AI & Procurement in focus, operations
with vast economic impact on business and society. With procurement operations in
focus, and as part of the overall WASP-HS project "AI as A Strategic Imperative", the
questions that will be dealt with in the PhD project concern the various challenges and
questions that AI implementation in procurement meets.

How to apply

All applications to the SSE PhD program in Business Administration must be made through the web-based application system accessible via the SSE website

There you will find complete information about prerequisites as well as required contents
of your application (see the box ”Application Step by Step” at the bottom of the page).
Please, choose the specialization in Marketing and Strategy to apply for this position and
mention the project in your statement of purpose. The application deadline is February
1, 2022.

For general information about the PhD programs at SSE and the application process,
please contact us at For further information about this specific position,
please contact Professor Per Andersson ( Since the position in
question is tied to a pre-specified project, applicants interested in this project should
clearly indicate this in their application.

About SSE

Type of employment Temporary position
Contract type Full time
Number of positions 1
Working hours Full time
City Stockholm
County Stockholms län
Country Sweden
Reference number 2021/75
  • Per Andersson, Professor,
  • General information PhD programs,
Published 01.Dec.2021
Last application date 01.Feb.2022 11:59 PM CET