The past decade has seen an ever increasing number of natural and man-made disasters. The international community addresses the resulting humanitarian crises with concerted efforts and supports the affected communities in their survival by delivering essential goods and services ranging from food aid, water and sanitation services, to providing shelter and basic health care. Although logistics and supply chain management activities account for a large part of total expenditures in such operations, these have frequently not yet been recognised as key levers to improve effectiveness and efficiency of humanitarian organisations.
Dr. Alexander Blecken investigates the tasks and responsibilities of humanitarian organisations and their supply chain partners when designing, planning, and implementing supply chain processes for humanitarian operations. He systematically presents the tasks of supply chain management in the context of humanitarian operations under consideration of both short-term disaster relief and medium-term humanitarian aid. A reference task model is developed which can be used by humanitarian organisations as a tool for process modelling and design in the areas of logistics and supply chain management. A number of supply chain processes illustrate the flexible application of the reference task model.
Dr. Alexander Blecken is a logistics and information technology consultant. He obtained his M. Sc. degree in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from the University of Southern California and his PhD in business computing and supply chain management from the University of Paderborn. He worked with DaimlerChrysler in research and development before joining the humanitarian aid organisation Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) in 2005. He has also worked as logistician and project coordinator in the field and currently serves on the board of directors of the German section of MSF. At the Heinz Nixdorf Institute, he pursues his research interests and publishes on issues related to humanitarian logistics, supply chain management, and process modelling and optimisation.
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