NOFOMA 2014 Special Issue

Britta Gammelgaard (Copenhagen Business School, Copenhagen, Denmark.)
Günter Prockl (Copenhagen Business School, Copenhagen, Denmark.)
Peter Holm Andreasen (Copenhagen Business School, Copenhagen, Denmark.)
Hans-Joachim Schramm (Institute for Transport and Logistics Management, Vienna University of Economics and Business, Vienna, Austria. AND Department of Operations Management, Copenhagen Business School, Copenhagen, Denmark)
Andreas Wieland (Copenhagen Business School, Copenhagen, Denmark.)
Malek Maalouf (Copenhagen Business School, Copenhagen, Denmark.)
Aseem Kinra (Copenhagen Business School, Copenhagen, Denmark.)

International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management

ISSN: 0960-0035

Article publication date: 5 May 2015



Gammelgaard, B., Prockl, G., Andreasen, P.H., Schramm, H.-J., Wieland, A., Maalouf, M. and Kinra, A. (2015), "NOFOMA 2014 Special Issue", International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management, Vol. 45 No. 4.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

NOFOMA 2014 Special Issue

Article Type: Guest editorial From: International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management, Volume 45, Issue 4

The 26th NOFOMA annual conference took place at Copenhagen Business School, Denmark on June 11-13, 2014. NOFOMA, the Nordic network of researchers in logistics and supply chain management, was originally established by universities in Norway, Sweden, Finland and Denmark and was later augmented by universities in Iceland. Today, the conference enjoys considerable popularity far beyond the Nordic countries, attracting attendees from many parts of the world every year. It seems like the supportive, non-hierarchical Scandinavian and Nordic atmosphere is really appreciated. This atmosphere encourages the submission of work-in-progress papers and showcases the doctoral workshop, Nordlog, that has been organized in conjunction to the conference since 1996. In 2014, 120 participants from no less than 17 different countries registered for the conference.

The NOFOMA 2014 conference attracted 132 abstract submissions which resulted in 56 full papers accepted for presentation. In addition, 26 work-in-progress papers were accepted for presentation. Submitted full papers went through a double-blind peer review process (two to three reviewers) before they were accepted for presentation and publication in the conference proceedings.

New in 2014 was the Special Issue IJPDLM call for papers that was circulated in addition to the conference’s own call. The purpose of this additional call was to attract more journal ready papers to the conference. NOFOMA and IJPDLM have collaborated in publishing the best papers from the conference since 2003. However, recently, there has been a lack of papers that could appropriately be developed into publishable journal manuscripts within the time constraints of a conference Special Issue. Thus, when submitting to the conference, authors were asked to indicate that they would also like to have their papers considered for inclusion in the IJPDLM NOFOMA Special Issue. This new approach allows NOFOMA scholars to present research at all stages of maturity at the conference, including work-in-progress papers, conference papers and papers developed enough to be submitted to a leading journal in our field.

It is our sincere hope that the NOFOMA community will continue this close cooperation on a Special Issue with IJPDLM. We believe that a connection to a highly-ranked journal is a fine opportunity for making research presented at the conference accessible for a global audience and to link Nordic researchers to the international scientific community with a constantly raised bar for acceptance. We are confident that an IJPDLM Special Issue will contribute to maintaining and developing the high scientific reputation that the NOFOMA community and conference have developed over the years.

This year, four papers from the conference are included in the NOFOMA Special Issue. The papers are da Mota Pedrosa, Blazevic and Jasmand: “Logistics innovation development: a micro-level perspective”; Gammelgaard: “The emergence of city logistics. The case of Copenhagen’s Citylogistik-kbh”; Vega and Roussat: “Humanitarian logistics: the role of logistics service providers” (winner of the conference’s Best Paper Award sponsored by D.B. Schenker) and Bhakoo, Singh and Chia: “Supply chain structures shaping portfolio of technologies: exploring the impact of integration through the ‘dual arcs’ framework”. These papers were selected primarily based on the initial double-blind review process with feedback, comments and ratings according to IJPDLM criteria provided by the reviewers. From here, the NOFOMA 2014 Scientific Committee screened the papers with the best evaluations in order to assess whether these papers had the level of completeness to be ready within the time limits for the Special Issue. The authors were notified at the conference and shortly thereafter they received a list of issues from the Scientific Committee that needed to be effectively resolved in order to get the papers published. All papers went through two rounds of revision after the conference and before final acceptance by the Committee.

The first paper in this Special Issue to is co-authored by da Mota Pedrosa, Blazevic and Jasmand; it is titled “Logistics innovation development: a micro-level perspective”. Logistics innovation has been on the research agenda for a while, but there is still a lot of new knowledge just waiting to be created. Especially, research has emphasized the interaction on the interface between customers and suppliers to be the impetus of knowledge creation. This paper looks into the role of so-called boundary-spanning employees involved in the actual process of developing new and innovative processes by acquisition of customer knowledge. The authors investigate this issue by building on data collected through in-depth interviews in six cases of logistics innovations. The results of the research point toward one-to-one meetings when developing deep knowledge about the individual customer and implementing service innovations. Accordingly, the research emphasizes trust on the individual level as a decisive factor for intensive supply chain collaboration and innovation. The findings also suggest that when implementing standard service innovations, customer knowledge is required, although not necessarily on the individual level. Interestingly, none of the six cases point to open book considerations between the involved parties.

In the paper “The emergence of city logistics. The case of Copenhagen’s Citylogistik-kbh”, authored by Gammelgaard, another type of logistics innovation is addressed, namely, that of city logistics. Despite the fact that many cities have tried to reduce good transport in inner cities with city logistics schemes, very few have succeeded and there is still no recipe for creating a successful city logistics scheme without actual public regulation. This paper looks into the organizational change process of establishing a city logistics scheme in Copenhagen involving both public and private actors in order to better understanding the process toward such a logistics innovation. The study shows that a city logistics scheme is not established by a rational decision-making approach but is a result of a long process that is constantly threatening to break down. The ambition is to provide a better understanding of the difficulties associated with reaching the goal of city logistics thereby contributing to better goods transport planning processes in cities. To our knowledge, no other research has shed light on the processes from an organizational process angle.

Vega and Roussat also deal with logistics service providers in their paper “Humanitarian logistics: the role of logistics service providers” – although in a completely different setting. In contrast to an a priori assumption that the role of the actual distribution of humanitarian aid and the parties undertaking this role, have already been intensively dealt with in the literature, this is shown not to be the case. The study reveals that logistics service providers may take upon themselves one of three different roles: one of being just a member of the humanitarian supply chain as a part of their CSR policy; one of providing actual transport and logistics services; and one of coordinating humanitarian supply chains as a fourth party logistics provider. We foresee that the developed typology will lay the foundations for a considerable future research stream.

Last but not least, Bhakoo, Singh and Chia’s paper “Supply chain structures shaping portfolio of technologies: exploring the impact of integration through the ‘dual arcs’ framework” examines the impact of supply chain integration on the application of logistics and supply chain technologies. With an in-depth study of three Australian mass grocery retail supply chains, the authors show how a vertically and operationally integrated supply chain facilitated a narrow set of technologies and in contrast, how a disintegrated supply chain applied a broader portfolio of technologies. The research study adds the technology diversity variable to already known models of vertical integration and thereby further reinforces the argument for integration within supply chains. On the other hand, the study also sheds light on the need for technologies that can provide structural flexibility thereby emphasizing various viable structures and strategies of supply chains.

Finally, we would like to thank the authors for collaborating with us on the Special Issue. It has been a pleasure. Also the initial NOFOMA reviewers deserve our sincere thanks for their hard work and great feedback. We hope all readers will enjoy the papers as much as we did.

Dr Britta Gammelgaard, Professor Günter Prockl and Dr Peter Holm Andreasen, Copenhagen Business School, Copenhagen, Denmark

Dr Hans-Joachim Schramm, Institute for Transport and Logistics Management, Vienna University of Economics and Business, Vienna, Austria, and Department of Operations Management, Copenhagen Business School, Copenhagen, Denmark, and

Andreas Wieland, Dr Malek Maalouf and Dr Aseem Kinra, Copenhagen Business School, Copenhagen, Denmark

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