Guest editorial

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Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management

ISSN: 1741-038X

Article publication date: 25 October 2011



Choy, K.L., Law, K.M.Y. and Lenny Koh, S.C. (2011), "Guest editorial", Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, Vol. 22 No. 8.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Guest editorial

Article Type: Guest editorial From: Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, Volume 22, Issue 8

About the Guest EditorsDr K.L. Choy is an Associate Professor in the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering of the Hong Kong Polytechnic University. He gained his MSc degrees in Manufacturing Systems Engineering and in Management Science and his MPhil in Engineering at the University of Warwick, UK in the 1990s and a Doctorate degree at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University in 2003. He has published more than 70 international journal papers in the areas of logistics information, data systems, supply chain management and technology management, as well as applying expert systems to industry. E-mail:

Dr Kris M.Y. Law obtained her first degree in the field of manufacturing engineering and MPhil degree in machining technology respectively. With several years of industrial experiences, she pursued her PhD study in the field of organizational learning and development. Prior to joining PolyU, Kris Law attended the National Taiwan University where she obtained her post-doctoral research scholarship for a high-tech supply chain study in the region. Kris Law has been involved in various research projects in the field of high-tech management and technology management in the region. She has conducted several research projects in the Pearl River Delta, Taiwan, and Thailand, relating to high-tech entrepreneurship and management.

Professor S.C. Lenny Koh is an Associate Dean for Alumni Affairs and Chair in Operations Management at the University of Sheffield Management School, HK. Trained as a manufacturing engineer, Koh holds a First-class honors degree in Industrial and Manufacturing Systems Engineering then a Doctorate in Operations Management. Koh has over 244 publications in the forms of journal papers, books, edited books, edited proceeding, edited special issues, book chapters conference papers, technical papers, and reports. Her research interests and expertise are in the areas of logistics and supply chain management, production planning and control, uncertainty management, modern operations management in advanced manufacturing, e-business, e-organization, knowledge management, and sustainable business.

Global supply chain implications for manufacturers

Manufacturers have to deal with numerous challenges in the current complex supply chain networks. This becomes even more challenging in an era of globalization and exponentially increasing emerging technologies. Companies are forced to continuously change and develop to advance and to sustain in the competitive environment. Therefore, it is essential to adopt new theories, advance technologies, effective strategies, and integrative systems for manufacturers to cope with the challenges in the supply chain environment.

The purpose of this special issue is to explore the advantages of adopting the latest innovative theories and technologies in different supply chain aspects. This special issue contains six papers that provide insight on how theories and technologies can enable the supply chain operations for manufacturers. A brief overview of the papers that are provided in this issue is provided as follows.

“Dynamic vendor selection based on fuzzy AHP”, by Koul and Verma highlights that vendor selection and its evaluation are very important in supply chain management. However, traditional approaches neglecting multi-period planning horizon for vendor selection, and many decision makers or experts select vendors based on their practice and intuition. To overcome these problems, dynamic model support vendors with time axis has been developed which is not always crisp, rather it involves a high degree of fuzziness and uncertainty. This research provides a detailed step-by-step procedure to choose the best vendor selection and evaluation under uncertainty with time axis in a supply chain.

Lam et al. in their paper, “A decision support system to facilitate warehouse order fulfillment in cross-border supply chain”, present a decision support system to enhance the performance of cross-border supply chain. An intelligent decision support system, namely order picking planning system with the adoption of case-based reasoning (CBR), is proposed to support managers in making appropriate order fulfilling decisions when an order involves cross-border activities. With the increasing demand for material sourcing across different places, cross-border supply chain has raised the concern for manufacturers to seek lower material and rental costs. The focus on warehouse operations can increase efficiency in order delivery by considering cross-border requirements.

“Sustainable supply chain for collaborative manufacturing”, by Kuik et al. notes that the manufacturing trend of stringent product disposal regulations, a new business scenario, which requires an alternative disposal option on consumer products and further product recovery operations, is increasingly important for promoting sustainable supply chain performance. A re-classification of 6R (reduce, recover, redesign, reuse, recycle, remanufacturing) methodology for rectifying waste minimisation along a supply chain is proposed to increase product utilisation at the post-use stage. This paper provides some of the insights into holistic aspects of 6R perspective to increase product utilisation value between use and post-use stages.

Tse et al. in their paper, “Quality risk in global supply network”, highlights that the rise of recent product recalls reveals that manufacturing firms are particularly vulnerable to product quality and safety where goods and materials have been sourced globally. Thus, a conceptual supply chain risk management (SCRM) framework for mitigating quality risk is developed. In addition, four SCRM treatment practices are proposed by consolidating the empirical literature in operations management and supply chain management area. The general feasibility was discussed based on literature. The paper identifies four SCRM practices, and proposes two distinct antecedents that can prompt the effectiveness of SCRM.

“Real-time inbound decision support system for enhancing the performance of a food warehouse”, by Lao et al. mentions that with the increasing concerns about food management, attention is placed on the monitoring of different potential risk factors for food handling. Therefore, a system which integrates the radio frequency identification technology, CBR, and fuzzy reasoning (FR) technique is proposed to help:

  • facilitate and improve the quality of decision making;

  • reduce the level of substandard goods; and

  • facilitate data capturing and manipulation with the support of technology.

Integrating CBR and FR techniques to improve the quality of decision making on food inventories is an emerging idea. The major contribution of this paper is to develop an effective infrastructure for managing food receiving process and facilitating decision making in quality assurance.

Hedenstierna and Ng, in their paper, “Dynamic implications for customer order decoupling point (CODP) positioning”, highlights that the positioning of the CODP is an important strategic consideration for supply chains. To date, research has focused only on the static effects of CODP positioning. Therefore, a generic assembly-to-order system dynamics simulation model is developed and used to evaluate the dynamic consequences of shifting the CODP. This paper demonstrates the importance of considering the dynamic aspects of CODP positioning, and introduces the dynamic consequences of CODP location, providing a new perspective that should be considered when positioning the CODP.


The Guest Editors, would like to take this opportunity to thank all the authors for the time and effort they spent in writing their papers. Besides, they would like to express their heartfelt gratitude to the referees who reviewed the papers and made valuable comments for improving the quality of the manuscripts. Finally, the Guest Editors would like to gratefully acknowledge the trust and support provided by Professor David Bennett, in collating this special issue on the global supply chain implications for manufacturers.

K.L. Choy, Kris M.Y. Law and S.C. Lenny, KohGuest Editors

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