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Modelling an End-to-End Supply Chain System Using Simulation

Chilmon, Barbara (2018) Modelling an End-to-End Supply Chain System Using Simulation. Doctoral thesis, University of Huddersfield.

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Abstract

Supply chains (SCs) are an important part of today’s world. Many businesses operate in the global marketplace where individual companies are no longer treated as separate entities, but as a vital part of an end-to-end supply chain (E2E-SC) system. Key challenges and issues in managing E2E-SCs are duly attributed to their extended, complex and systemic nature. In the era of uncertainty, risks and market volatility, decision makers are searching for modelling techniques to be able to understand, to control, design or evaluate their E2E-SC. This research aims to support academics and decision makers by defining a generic simulation modelling approach that can be used for any E2E-SC.

This study considers the challenges and issues associated with modelling complex E2E-SC systems using simulation and underlines the key requirements for modelling an E2E-SC. The systematic literature review approach is applied to provide a twofold theoretical contribution [a] an insightful review of various contributions to knowledge surrounding simulation methods within the literature on end-to-end supply chains and [b] to propose a conceptual framework that suggests generic elements required for modelling such systems using simulation.

The research adopts a simulation methodology and develops a generic guide to an E2E-SC simulation model creation process. It is a mindful inquiry into the implications relative to a simulation model development process in presence of generic elements from the proposed conceptual framework. The conceptual framework is validated with industry experts and insightful remarks are drawn.

In conclusion, it is acknowledged that modelling an E2E-SC system using simulation is a challenge, and this area is not fully exploited by the business. A guide to an E2E-SC simulation model development is a theoretical and practical contribution of this research, immensely sought by businesses, which are continuously tackling day to day issues and challenges, hence often lacking resources and time to focus on modelling. The conceptual framework captures generic elements of the E2E-SC system; however, it also highlights multiple challenges around simulation model development process such as technical constraints and almost impracticability of a true reflection of an E2E-SC system simulation model.

The significant contribution of this thesis is the evaluation of the proposed generic guide to E2E-SC simulate model development, which provides the architecture for better strategic supply and demand balancing as new products, price fluctuations, and options for physical network changes can be dynamically incorporated into the model. The research provides an insightful journey through key challenges and issues when modelling E2E-SC systems and contributes with key recommendations for mindful inquiries into E2E-SC simulation models.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HF Commerce
Schools: Huddersfield Business School
Depositing User: Andrew Strike
Date Deposited: 22 Jun 2018 13:31
Last Modified: 01 Mar 2019 11:15
URI: http://eprints.hud.ac.uk/id/eprint/34542

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