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Elements in Delivering on Product Origin Promises
Making Promises about Product Origin is Indeed a Complex Job; The Story is rarely simple and at Times Simple items are Astonishingly Complex
Issue Date - 30/06/2011
Procurement into supply chain management
The idea of proactive, intelligent procurement is not new – for at least 40 years people have been talking about strategic supply management and the active development of the supply base. However, concerns about product origin give the hackneyed calls to rethink organisational buying a new relevance; purchasers are not just buying an item, but – in some senses – the whole system of supply that underpins it. This means that organizations need to fully understand the structure and inter dependencies of their supply network. The idea of ‘maps’ of supply systems – who supplies whom, and the inter dependencies within the network – has been the Grail of much research in supply chain management. Indeed, many fundamental theories in industrial economics rely on assumptions about the balance of power and commitment between trading partners. Working with Dr. Alexandra Brintrup, Dr. Tomomi Kito and Dr. Felix Reed-Tsochas, we have been developing novel maps of Toyota’s highly lauded supply-chain structure. However, it is clear that the imperative for mapping commercial relationships is shifting from researchers to companies themselves. Understanding the structure of supply beyond the first tier - and then developing the appropriate managerial and commercial strategies – is a key element in delivering on the promises of provenance.

Coordinated By : Sanchit Verma

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