Wrap-up 2021


The Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering and its research unit, UNIDEMI, are pleased to announce that in 2021, that the following students have completed their Doctoral Programs:

Maria Henriqueta Colaço Tavares de Almeida Oliveira e Sousa, Doctorate in Industrial Engineering, with the thesis: “Towards Lean Service sustainability: an action research approach”

Abstract: This thesis argues that the sustainability of Lean philosophy adoption depends on following a systemic and holistic thinking, combining Lean technical and social dimensions. Based on the constructivism research paradigm, the study was supported on the Action Research methodology (AR), particularly the Canonical Action Research method (CAR). Acknowledging on lessons learned from two research cycles, the evolving approach to applying and sustaining Lean in a financial services provider was performed. The result was positive and the innovative approach followed was coined as Lean Service System Approach (LSSA). It combines the standard roadmap in Lean Leap model with Lean Service Critical Success Factors, covering the four perspectives of organisation, people, process and customer, within continuous improvement cycles. This approach was able to anchor Lean in the organisation over time and answered the research question of how to sustain Lean thinking in service organisations. Future research perspectives were also identified to foster further contributions to the Lean community, practitioners and academia.
Patrick Lourenço Inácio, Doctorate in Mechanical Engineering, with the thesis: “Solid state processing for production of functionally graded materials”
Negin Mehrbod, Doctorate in Industrial Engineering, with the thesis: “Artificial intelligence to improve efficiency and quality of human-centred remote services: the case study of call centers”