Introduction to Supply Chain Management (CASSANDRA Compendium Chapter 2, CORE2007a)


The second chapter of the CASSANDRA compendium gives a general outlook on the theory and practice of modern supply chain management. Written in lay-man’s language, the text explains a broad range of strategies for managing supply chains, from lean management to agile and responsive logistics. The chapter also defines fundamental supply chain terminology and discusses current trends in the logistics, including synchromodality, use of 4PL logistics service providers, and green logistics. The chapter introduces several supply chain reference frameworks that illustrate a series of interdependent activities and stakeholders involved in the international transport of cargo. The CASSANDRA compendium is available for download here.

Review by Toni Männistö (CBRA)

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Full review

The compendium summarizes the SCOR and UN/CEFACT supply chain models, that may be the two most used logistics reference frameworks in the world. The document also discusses less known academic conceptual models that seek to simplify the complexity of supply chain management by categorizing and explaining management strategies, activities, stakeholders and their roles and responsibilities. The section on the future trends in logistics offers a great outlook on the most likely changes and driving forces in the logistics industry. The outlook suggests that for example synchromodality (increased flexibility in transport mode selection), green logistics (less emissions), use of 4PL logistics service providers (outsourced supply chain management), and continuously increasing ship and port sizes will reshape the cross-border logistics over the years. The document also explains key CASSANDRA concepts and their impacts on international supply chain management. For instance, the Data Pipeline, a pivotal CASSANDRA concept, seeks to enhance sharing of information across supply chain stakeholders, in particularly from business operators to customs and other border control authorities. Most importantly, the Data Pipeline would allow customs officers to access commercial information, that normally is exchanged only between buyers and sellers, early in the upstream supply chain at the consignment completion point (CCP). This accurate, early commercial information would enable the customs and other border control agencies to assess security and other risks of cargo early on.

All in all, the document provides a crash refresher course on basic and advanced logistics terminology that would be beneficial for many the CORE consortium, especially for those partners whose expertise is mainly outside the logistics industry. The CORE demonstrators benefit from descriptions of CASSANDRA innovations that support information exchange and improve visibility across the supply chain. The demos might choose to reuse some of these CASSANDRA innovations or their components. The CASSANDRA compendium also contains a great deal of material that could be reused for education and training purposes in CORE (WP19). Finally, the chapter concludes with recommendations that are relevant also for CORE. The chapter recommends, for example, that because of broad variety of international supply chains, CASSANDRA solutions should be adaptable for different contexts.


Hintsa, J. and Uronen, K. (Eds.) (2012), “Common assessment and analysis of risk in global supply chains “, Compendium of FP7-project CASSANDRA, Chapter 2



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