School of Engineering

Staff Profile

Tom Zunder


Multidisciplinary hybrid researcher into sustainable freight and logistics within the wider context of Future Mobility in the UK, the EU and globally. Over 30 years experience in operations management, supply chain management, rail freight, urban logistics, and pan European multi actor multi methods quantitative and qualitative practice and research.

My full CV:
My VCF card:
My Google Scholar:


Research Interests

I tend to hold a pragmatist position on research philosophy. The research approaches I have deployed and which I (currently) find most interesting include: Delphi surveys, CBA, Gap analyses, Environmental impact assessment, market research, mixed methods research, action research, systems thinking approaches and action research. The areas of knowledge and practical expertise that I focus on, often in conjunction and holistically, are rail freight, city logistics, ICT and transport logistics, and sustainable procurement.

Current Work

  • Logistics benchmarking and standards
  • research into satellite navigation and vehicle way finding
  • ongoing research into urban freight and city logistics
  • research into the optimisation of intermodal freight using optimised systems
  • development of a market based approach to urban freight access
  • systems architectures and intermodal freight
  • eLogistics field research and gap analysis
  • rail freight logistics and operations on a continental cross border scale
  • sustainable procurement policy and practice


I have developed, bid for and won over €5 million euros of EU research funding 2004-2019 for my team, co-ordinator and principal investigator.

  • FLEX-RAIL: Paradigm Shifts for Rail
  • TER4RAIL: Transversal Research for Rail
  • CAPITAL: Collaborative cApacity Programme on Intelligent Transport Systems Training educAtion and Liaison
  • NOVELOG: New cooperative business models and guidance for sustainable city logistics
  • Capacity4Rail - Increasing Capacity 4 Rail networks through enhanced infrastructure and optimised operations
  • SMARTSET: Sustainable MARketdriven Terminal Solutions for Efficient freight Transport
  • SmartFusion: Smart Urban Freight Solutions
  • BESTFACT: Best Practice Factory for Logistics
  • SPECTRUM: Solutions and Processes to Enhance the Competitiveness of Transport by Rail in Unexploited Markets
  • TUNRAIL: Research into the development of rail based curricula in higher education
  • e-Freight: European e-freight capabilities for co-modal transport
  • SuperGreen: Supporting EU’s Freight Transport Logistics Action Plan on Green Corridors Issues
  • BE LOGIC: Benchmarking Logistics Chains
  • KOMODA: Co-modality - towards optimised integrated chains in freight transport logistics
  • RETRACK: Reorganisation of transport networks by advanced rail freight concepts
  • FREIGHTWISE: management framework for intelligent intermodal transport
  • Bestufs II - Best Urban Freight Solutions Two


Postgraduate Teaching

MBA Logistics module, Newcastle University Business School, 2008-2012

Rail Freight and Logistics Logistics MSc teaching 2010-2016

ITS and Electromobility postgraduate tuition 2018-2019

Curricula development

My colleagues and I have done funded research into and then development of curricula in the areas of rail operations and logistics as well as fuel management and international logistics policy and practice.