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Jacobs University graduates awarded with logistics prize

Yousuf Farooq, a graduate of Jacobs University Bremen, was recognized by the German Supply Chain Network BVL for his bachelor thesis on sustainability in advertising. (Source: Jacobs University)


February 4, 2021
With its Thesis Award, the Supply Chain Network BVL (Bundesvereinigung Logistik) honors outstanding bachelor's and master's theses in the field of logistics. Two graduates of Jacobs University Bremen recently received the award: Yousuf Farooq and Valeria Núñez Alfaro. Both studied Industrial Engineering and Management at the international university and both dealt with sustainability in their bachelor’s theses.

In his final thesis, Yousuf Farooq investigated the significance of sustainability-related advertising. Sustainability is an important purchase criterion, but consumers often react skeptically to corresponding advertising. This is especially true when companies have been caught "greenwashing", thus only pretending to manufacture environmentally friendly products. According to the paper, large companies are generally viewed more critically than small ones. Women turn out to be more skeptical than men. And reservations are most pronounced toward certain industries, such as the oil industry. Another finding of the student: Particularly critical consumers often prefer companies that don't advertise sustainability aggressively. The work was supervised by Hendro Wicaksono, Professor of Industrial Engineering at Jacobs University, whose research group conducts research on sustainable supply chains, among other topics. Yousuf Farooq is pursuing a career in data analytics. "My studies taught me how to extract knowledge from data and use it to benefit companies and society," said the 22-year-old.

Valeria Núñez Alfaro studied "Industrial Engineering and Management" at Jacobs University Bremen and was honored by BVL for her thesis on sustainability in air travel. (Source: private)

Valeria Núñez Alfaro tackled the topic of sustainability in air travel in her final thesis. Aviation emissions are expected to keep rising exponentially, with current forecasts indicating that by 2050 they will account for 25 percent of the global carbon budget. Hereby, individual consumer action can be an important tool to create a market pull towards more environmentally friendly flights and reduce the current growth rate. In her thesis, Valeria engaged herself in investigating to what extent consumers value environmental sustainability when choosing air travel in terms of the trade-off between cost, time, comfort, and CO2 emissions. Valeria was able to show that air travelers are willing to make monetary and temporal trade-offs to reduce their environmental impact. Moreover, displaying CO2 emissions as a percentage of an individual’s annual Carbon Budget increased the value of environmental sustainability. “My findings can help airlines and governments design effective price and non-price incentives to create a shift towards sustainable flying”, stated Valeria. Stanislav Chankov, lecturer in Supply Chain Management at Jacobs University, supervised her. Valeria is now studying in France, at HEC Paris, where she is pursuing a master's degree in Sustainability and Social Innovation.