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Guest Post: Supply Chain Resilience–a Visualized Introduction

July 2, 2012
Ben Benjabutr, at, in Thailand, provides an interesting guest post in his Powerpoint explanation of supply chain resilience.
Supply chain resilience is a relatively new subject in supply chain management. During the 1970s, corporate decision making used traditional risk management techniques which have strong roots in financial models. Risks are usually quantified using assumptions based on historical data. In 1982, the term “Supply Chain Management” was coined by  a management consultant in the UK. The  primary goal of supply chain management was to reduce lead-time in distribution channel.

Risks in supply chains come in different terms– like variation, uncertainty, non-conformance, vulnerability and disruption. In the late 1990s, supply chain risk management emerged in academic literature. In 2000, research on the subject was conducted in the UK after transportation disruptions from fuel protests. Another research stream about resilience came in the United States after the 9-11 attacks in 2001. Then, in 2004, Martin Christopher and Helen Peck published their paper  “Building the Resilient Supply Chain.”  They defined resilience as “the ability of a system to return to its original state or move to a new, more desirable state after being disturbed“.

The most interesting year turned out to be 2011, with the tsunami in Japan followed by massive flooding in Thailand. The automotive and electronic industries were hit very hard by the disruptions. Since then, supply chain resilience has gain extraordinary attention from both academia and business professionals. The purpose of the Powerpoints I have created (click below) is to familiarize readers with the concept of supply chain resilience.  I hope this is something useful for instructors teaching from the Heizer-Render OM text.


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