Abstract: In today’s tightly connected global economy, traditional management practices that rely on “steady-state” conditions are challenged by chaotic external pressures and turbulent change. Just in the last few years, the world has experienced a string of catastrophic events, including a global economic meltdown, a volcanic eruption in Iceland, an oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, a disastrous tsunami and power blackout in Japan, and political upheavals in Africa and the Middle East. Managing the risk of an uncertain future is a challenge that requires resilience—the ability to survive, adapt, and grow in the face of turbulent change. This research develops a measurement tool titled the Supply Chain Resilience Assessment and Management (SCRAM™). Data gathered from seven global manufacturing and service firms are used to validate SCRAM™, using qualitative methodology with 1,369 empirical items from focus groups reviewing 14 recent disruptions. Critical linkages are uncovered between the inherent vulnerability factors and controllable capability factors. Through mixed-method triangulation, this research identified 311 specific linkages that can be used to guide a resilience improvement process. Pilot testing suggests a correlation between increased resilience and improved supply chain performance.
Author: Joseph Fiksel, Mikaella Polyviou, Keely L. Croxton, Timothy J. Pettit
Date: March 20, 2013