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Community-based Logistics and Supply Chain Management: Developing, Testing and Validating Conceptual Models

Description: The field of Logistics and Supply Chain Management (LSCM) suggests that transactions, collaboration, and value are important in the supply and delivery of products and services to meet the need of impoverished end-consumers. In many cases, the application of LSCM is paramount in most strategic decision-making efforts. Therefore, this research explores the applications of LSCM processes and activities within the community-based context. The methodology used to address the research questions consisted of a hybrid of mixed methods. This mixed methodology provides three essays that investigate the application and development of LSCM in the community-based context. The essays address the flow of charitable products and services through supply chains. The dissertation does not pay close attention to the first-tier suppliers’ suppliers, which is looking at the originating flow of goods and services (raw materials, manufacturing, etc.). However, the dissertation puts a focus on products and services supplied to focal organizations and how these products are then passed on to end-consumers. Essay I looks at the transaction (costs) that ensue from the supply of charitable products. Essay II analyzes a social service ecosystem and investigates how the network of organizations enable the distribution of charitable products and services. Lastly, Essay III examines the delivery of valuable services to the end-consumers, and what tools Community-Based Enterprises (CBEs) should focus on to develop and retain end-consumers in impoverished communities. The research provides conceptual models that review some fundamental LSCM achievement gaps in supplying, delivering and providing social services to end users within impoverished communities. The dissertation draws upon literature from the fields of economics, marketing, social science, and logistics and supply chain management. The dissertation uses the primary research method of unstructured and semi-structured interviews, case studies, written survey instruments and system dynamics within three studies. The studies resolve to look into the term ...
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Date: May 2016
Creator: Obaze, Yolanda

Framework to Evaluate Entropy Based Data Fusion Methods in Supply Chain Management

Description: This dissertation explores data fusion methodology to deduce an overall inference from the data gathered from multiple heterogeneous sources. Typically, if there existed a data source in which the data were reliable and unbiased, then data fusion would not be necessary. Data fusion methodology combines data form multiple diverse sources so that the desired information - such as the population mean - is improved despite redundancies, inaccuracies, biases, and inflated variability in the data. Examples of data fusion include estimating average demand from similar sources, and integrating fatality counts from different media sources after a catastrophe. The approach in this study combines "inputs" from distinct sources so that the information is "fused." Another way of describing this process is "data integration." Important assumptions are 1. Several sources provide "inputs" for information used to estimate parameters of a probability distribution. 2. Since distributions for the data from the sources are heterogeneous, some sources are less reliable. 3. Distortions, bias, censorship, and systematic errors may be more prominent in data from certain sources. 4. The sample size of sources data, number of "inputs," may be very small. Examples of information from multiple sources are abundant: traffic information from sensors at intersections, multiple economic indicators from various sources, demand data for product using similar retail stores as sources, polling data from various sources, and disaster count of fatalities from different media sources after a catastrophic event. This dissertation seeks to address a gap in the operations literature by addressing three research questions regarding entropy base data fusion (EBDF) approaches to estimation. Three separate, but unifying, essays address the research questions for this dissertation. Essay 1 provides an overview of supporting literature for the research questions. A numerical analysis of airline maximum wait time data illustrates the underlying issues involved in EBDF methods. This ...
Date: December 2016
Creator: Tran, Huong Thi

The Impact of End-user Decision-making in the Supply of Public Transportation

Description: Efficient public transportation provides economic and social opportunities that increase accessibility to markets and employment as well as providing investment benefits. Key challenges to the U.S. public transportation industry include developing modes and increasing the availability of public transportation in a manner that meets the needs of individual users in a cost effective manner. A problem facing public transportation officials is the need to understand the factors that influence consumer decision-making and consumer attitudes toward public transportation. Feedback regarding experiences as well as expectations from commuters provides information for developing and improving public transportation. Thus, decision-making factors of end-users are keys to improving supply, growth, and understanding utilization of public transportation. Public transportation officials seek to improve the public transportation experience for commuters by increasing modes and benefits of the systems. The decision-making factors of the end-users require identification and examination in order to provide a high quality and efficient experience for commuters. The research questions of interest in the current dissertation are: (1) What are the decision-making factors affecting commuters’ attitudes toward public transportation? and (2) How do the end-user decision-making factors affect the supply of public transportation? The purpose of this research is to extend the current body of knowledge about decision-making factors by developing and testing a new theoretical model to measure the attitudes of public transportation end-users. This study has its theoretical foundation in the theory of planned behavior, theory of reasoned action, and rational choice theory. To understand how public transportation is affected by decision-making factors, it is necessary to analyze the relationships among the decision factors and attitudes. The findings of this study contribute by building theory and having implications for practice. This study employs a mixed methodology of qualitative and quantitative research. More specifically, the development of a framework and testing of that ...
Date: May 2015
Creator: Scott, Rebecca A.

Lifecycle Affordability Decisions

Description: SpaceX as aerospace manufacturer and space transport service technology company work along to make reusable rockets, their long term plan is to make spaceflight affordable routine. Elon Musk, as CEO, is involved in every step of decision making as he has mentioned in interviews. The rocket's engine has undergone a number of improvements, and to increase its efficiency and power, a number of parts has been reduced. The redesigning process involves several decisions, such as in-house or out-source production. This research provides a practical framework for contractors, suppliers, and manufacturers to build a more reliable, affordable, and low cost supply chain. As a result, the objective of my dissertation is to explore how managers can extend the useful life of their assets and reduce their total cost of ownership. The main research focus for this dissertation is lifecycle affordability (LCA) for capital intensive products when post production costs are significantly higher than production costs. Lifecycle cost is often not considered by firms in a product, service or asset when making acquisition decisions. Firm's acquisition are mainly based on the initial cost of the product. Decision making without considering the entire lifecycle cost of a product impacts the firm's profitability, revenue, pricing strategies, and competitiveness. Evaluating the trade-offs between all the costs involved in the product lifecycle can help firms to have an estimation of costs before making any acquisition decisions. To address these challenges, lifecycle affordability (LCA) considerations can enable firms to focus their decisions on their long-term investment process rather than trying to save on initial cost of purchasing a product. This dissertation presents the following research question: how has lifecycle affordability been represented in supply chain research to date? And what are constructs of lifecycle affordability? To address this research question, the dissertation is comprised of three separate ...
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Date: August 2016
Creator: Pourrezajourshari, Saba