How can additive manufacturing enhance supply chain resilience: a potential framework and operational strategies

Shih, Chun-Hsun (2021) How can additive manufacturing enhance supply chain resilience: a potential framework and operational strategies. [Dissertation (University of Nottingham only)]

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Additive manufacturing (AM), well-known as 3D printing, is an ongoing trend in various industries. The technology enables greater freedom of product design which challenges conventional production methods with its great potential to push forward geometric design and boundary limits. Besides revolutionising the concept of product design, the technology jointly has different degree of impacts on activities within the entire process of supply chain (SC) planning and operations. Since the outbreak of coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) in the early beginning of 2020, the world has been experiencing its unprecedented, turbulent times ever. A great range of industries have been encountering challenges which are never seen and expected. Lots of companies were forced to react to the disruption abruptly.

However, the global pandemic crisis might be a juncture for companies to seriously investigate their business models and adjust their SC models to be less vulnerable to disruptions as well as enhancing SC resilience. AM has captured growing interests to be developed and applied in a wide range of industries. In fact, the technology has been studied for its impacts on SC planning and how it can act as a complement to SC operations even before the pandemic crisis. During the pandemic, cases were found to apply AM technology for urgent demand cases, such as related applications in the medical industry.

Enlightened by the observations, and thus the research objective was originated. This study was carried out to develop a potentially feasible AM adopted SC planning and operations framework, aiming at enhancing SC resilience. The author managed to establish the framework based on discoveries through literature review and then complement the framework with practical experiences obtained via conducting interviews. So far, the idea of connecting AM with the concept of SC resilience is still relatively novel. It is expected that the framework could narrow down the gap between theories and practice. Hopefully the proposed framework would help future companies establish a more resilient and agile SC model, which is more resistant to disruptions.

Item Type: Dissertation (University of Nottingham only)
Depositing User: Shih, Chun-Hsun
Date Deposited: 25 Apr 2023 09:44
Last Modified: 25 Apr 2023 09:44

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