The advent of recession at the beginning of twenty-first century forced many organizations worldwide to reduce cost and to be more responsive to customer demands. Lean Manufacturing (LM) has been widely perceived by industry as an answer to these requirements because LM reduces waste without additional requirements of resources. This led to a spurt in LM research across the globe mostly through empirical and exploratory studies which resulted in a plethora of LM definitions with divergent scopes, objectives, performance indicators, tools/techniques/methodologies, and concepts/elements. The purpose of this paper is to review LM literature and report these divergent definitions, scopes, objectives, and tools/techniques/methodologies.
This paper highlights various definitions by various researchers and practitioners. A total of 209 research papers have been reviewed for the research contribution, research methodology adopted, tools/techniques/methodologies used, type of industry, author profile, country of research, and year of publication.
There are plethora of LM definitions with divergent objectives and scope. Theory verification through empirical and exploratory studies has been the focus of research in LM. Automotive industry has been the focus of LM research but LM has also been adopted by other types of industries also. One of the critical implementation factors of LM is simultaneous adoption of leanness in supply chain. LM has become an integrated system composed of highly integrated elements and a wide variety of management practices. There is lack of standard LM implementation process/framework.
The paper reviews 209 research papers for their research contribution, research methodology, author profile, type of industry, and tools/techniques/methodology used. Various characteristics of LM definitions are also reviewed.
Bhamu, J. and Singh Sangwan, K. (2014), "Lean manufacturing: literature review and research issues", International Journal of Operations & Production Management, Vol. 34 No. 7, pp. 876-940. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJOPM-08-2012-0315Download as .RIS
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