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Article
Publication date: 7 August 2017

Sunkyung Choi and Shinya Hanaoka

The purpose of this paper is to develop a method for diagramming a base camp or space for emergency workers and a staging area to be used during sorting, storing, loading…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to develop a method for diagramming a base camp or space for emergency workers and a staging area to be used during sorting, storing, loading, and unloading of relief goods in a humanitarian logistics base airport.

Design/methodology/approach

A method is developed based on a synthesis of the relevant literature and current practices of airports. This provides a means for estimating the area required for each facility and visualizes the layout of the base through an adjacency diagram and a bubble diagram. The method is applied to the Shizuoka Airport in Japan as a case study.

Findings

The proposed method can be used to determine the approximate size and layout of a humanitarian logistics base in an airport based on the affected population and the number of emergency workers.

Research limitations/implications

Airport operation regulations and mathematical models from architectural planning need to be reflected further.

Practical implications

The method provides potential operational improvements for policies and standards for airport operations and enables government officials and humanitarian logistics organizations to identify concerns in facilitating and managing constraints in existing airports.

Originality/value

This study addresses the detailed phases in a diagramming for a humanitarian logistics base airport by integrating an architectural approach and airport disaster management. The results highlight the importance of managing the flexible use of space to improve effective humanitarian logistics.

Details

Journal of Humanitarian Logistics and Supply Chain Management, vol. 7 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-6747

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 15 June 2021

Claudia Paciarotti, Wojciech D. Piotrowicz and George Fenton

The paper is focused on standards in humanitarian logistics and supply chain. Standards, implemented between organisations, allow improving the interoperability of…

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917

Abstract

Purpose

The paper is focused on standards in humanitarian logistics and supply chain. Standards, implemented between organisations, allow improving the interoperability of humanitarian operations. The paper aims (1) to review a state-of-the-art approach to the topic by the academic community, (2) to evaluate the current use of standards among humanitarian organisations and (3) to investigate the perceived need for further and specific standards.

Design/methodology/approach

To achieve the aims, the literature was reviewed; then a survey on 227 professionals from the humanitarian logistics sector was conducted.

Findings

Based on 227 responses, it is possible to conclude that most surveyed professionals recognise the need for and the importance of standardisation in humanitarian logistics, especially in areas such as procurement, distribution, medical logistics and logistics planning, which were perceived as critical areas that require standardisation.

Research limitations/implications

Practitioners and scholars were targeted via social media, through mailing lists and via communication from the practitioner organisation – the Humanitarian Logistics Association (HLA). While it provided good access to different groups of respondents, the response rate is not possible to calculate.

Practical implications

The findings confirm the high importance of standardisation, indicating areas and functions that should be standardised first. Standardisation may improve cooperation between different humanitarian actors, allowing better service provision for beneficiaries. Thus there are also potential negative impacts, i.e. impact on localisation, which should be overcome.

Social implications

Results do not have a direct social impact; however, they stimulate research and work among practitioners on standardisation, which in turn could improve cooperation between humanitarian actors, thereby enabling a better humanitarian response in emergencies.

Originality/value

The majority of papers on standardisation use a qualitative approach. This paper applies a survey among a large network of humanitarian practitioners, capturing their view on the topic and perception of the need for standardisation. The work is descriptive; however, it could be used as a base for further studies related to humanitarian standards.

Details

Journal of Humanitarian Logistics and Supply Chain Management, vol. 11 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-6747

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Article
Publication date: 21 October 2013

Dorit Bölsche, Matthias Klumpp and Hella Abidi

The purpose of the research paper is to provide the humanitarian logistics community with an overall picture about competencies and skills in humanitarian logistics and if…

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2777

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of the research paper is to provide the humanitarian logistics community with an overall picture about competencies and skills in humanitarian logistics and if there is a lack of professionalization of the logistics function in humanitarian context from an international perspective. Further this research elaborates practical approaches how the skills and competencies can be enhanced and developed for international education programs.

Design/methodology/approach

An empirical survey as approach was used. Hereby a descriptive analysis provides in a comprehensive way education, skills and competencies in humanitarian logistics. The respondents are from different countries and continents as well as from different humanitarian sector, e.g. humanitarian organizations (HOs), logistics service providers, military services and researchers.

Findings

In general, the findings of the research paper present valuable insights of mandatory contents of education in humanitarian logistics as well as competencies and skills on different levels based on European Qualification Framework (EQF). This research paper explores these and offers suggestions to improve and promote market and professional competencies and skills for the humanitarian logistics sector and to minimize their impacts.

Research limitations/implications

The field survey was due to access and motivation restriction mainly answered by academics in the field of humanitarian logistics or by leadership personnel with very high academic merits (MA/PhD). Further the objective of this research paper was purposefully limited to describing the education requirements, not gap analysis with existing education offers or development of new curricula content – this should be a task for further research setups.

Practical implications

Specific requirements regarding negotiation and legal competences are named in the survey as well as the objective of specific, country-related adaptions and the time schedule form of education trainings in humanitarian logistics (during a professional career with as much time absent for learning as feasible).

Social implications

The paper highlights the increasing demand and still existing gap regarding education and training in humanitarian logistics in the field. All included institutions and persons have to re-evaluate their prioritization and budgeting in order to support further education and training for personnel in humanitarian logistics according to the results of the survey and addressing the need of logisticians in the humlog management and operations.

Originality/value

This paper adds to the knowledge about the implications of education and training and measurement of skills and competencies based on EQF for theory and practice. Further the humanitarian logistics community requires rudimentary humanitarian logistics education to enhance the logistics operation in case of disaster toward the affected people.

Details

Journal of Humanitarian Logistics and Supply Chain Management, vol. 3 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-6747

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Article
Publication date: 16 March 2010

Jérôme Chandes and Gilles Paché

The purpose of this paper is to underline the advantages offered by applying the collective strategy model in the context of humanitarian logistics, enriching the existing…

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7649

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to underline the advantages offered by applying the collective strategy model in the context of humanitarian logistics, enriching the existing benefits that operations management and business logistics techniques have brought to the field. In both man‐made and natural disaster relief, humanitarian logistics operations have been hampered by a lack of coordination between actors, which directly affects performance in terms of reactivity and reliability. Adapted collective strategies could offer a solution to this problem.

Design/methodology/approach

A literature review deals with the issue of humanitarian logistics through an operational dimension, followed by a strategic approach. This is rounded out with a case study dealing with the Pisco earthquake in Peru (August 2007), which is based on a participant observation methodological approach.

Findings

The research presented in this paper reveals that a collective action approach has a positive impact on the working of humanitarian supply chains, as long as a “hub” is used to provide accountability and reliability. If a technical approach, particularly in matters of operations management (optimization of transportation, location of regional warehouses, etc.) is essential to better manage humanitarian logistics, it must also be in the service of a collective strategy, notably in the pre‐positioning of supplies and the coordination of relief efforts.

Originality/value

There is an emerging body of work on managing logistical operations in a humanitarian context, but less on strategic readings of humanitarian supply chains. In addition, the application of methods from the field of business logistics is possible, but too often underestimated. This work helps to address both gaps.

Details

Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, vol. 21 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-038X

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Article
Publication date: 7 April 2015

Hella Abidi, Sander de Leeuw and Matthias Klumpp

The purpose of this paper is to identify the value of fourth-party logistics (4PL) services in a humanitarian supply chain. Furthermore, it shows a framework for a…

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2324

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to identify the value of fourth-party logistics (4PL) services in a humanitarian supply chain. Furthermore, it shows a framework for a fourth-party humanitarian logistics concept.

Design/methodology/approach

The research paper presents a framework of fourth-party humanitarian logistics based on the four core components described by Christopher (2005) which was evaluated with a nonlinear approach called analytical hierarchy process (AHP). The AHP method explores qualitative and quantitative decision-making criteria in case of solving multi-attribute and complex problems. In total, seven experts from academia and practice have contributed to this research, resulting in a better understanding of the decisive needs of humanitarian supply chain actors for implementing and integrating a 4PL concept.

Findings

The research shows an increased value for humanitarian supply chain actors of establishing a 4PL concept. The results present a positive influence of 4PL in complex disasters environments and provide key drivers for increasing and simplifying collaboration between the humanitarian supply chain actors.

Research limitations/implications

Future research has to consider different disaster types and needs to further emphasize the added value for beneficiaries of implementing a 4PL concept in a humanitarian supply chain environment. Further research should preferably also consider case studies in order to analyse challenges, drawbacks and benefits of this concept (qualitative and quantitative factors) in a real-life humanitarian supply chain setting.

Practical implications

The research offers managerial insights into the use of a 4PL concept in the humanitarian supply chain environment to improve efficiency due to an improved collaboration between the humanitarian supply chain actors.

Originality/value

The research paper investigates an under-researched topic in the humanitarian supply chain environment. For humanitarian supply chain actors outsourcing their activities to a 4PL service provider could secure collaboration, increase service levels as well as efficiency and therefore create additional value.

Details

Journal of Humanitarian Logistics and Supply Chain Management, vol. 5 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-6747

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Article
Publication date: 6 November 2017

Nathan Kunz, Luk N. Van Wassenhove, Maria Besiou, Christophe Hambye and Gyöngyi Kovács

This paper is based on a panel discussion at EurOMA 2015. The purpose of this paper is to identify a number of barriers to relevant research in humanitarian logistics. The…

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1834

Abstract

Purpose

This paper is based on a panel discussion at EurOMA 2015. The purpose of this paper is to identify a number of barriers to relevant research in humanitarian logistics. The authors propose a charter of ten rules for conducting relevant humanitarian research.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors use operations management literature to identify best practices for doing research with practice. The authors compile, condense and interpret opinions expressed by three academics and one practitioner at the panel discussion, and illustrate them through quotes.

Findings

The increasing volume of papers published in the humanitarian logistics literature has not led to a proportional impact on practice. The authors identify a number of reasons for this, such as poor problem definition, difficult access to data or lack of contextualization. The authors propose a charter of ten rules that have the potential to make humanitarian logistics research more relevant for practice.

Practical implications

By developing best practices for doing relevant research in humanitarian logistics, this paper enables the academic community and practice to better work together on relevant and impactful research projects. Academic knowledge combined with practice-inspired problems has the potential to generate significant improvements to humanitarian practice.

Originality/value

This paper is the first to address the problem of relevance of humanitarian logistics research. It is also one of the few papers involving a practitioner to discuss practical relevance of research. Through this unique approach, it is hoped that this paper provides a set of particularly helpful recommendations for researchers studying humanitarian logistics.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 37 no. 11
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

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Article
Publication date: 4 April 2016

Cécile L'Hermitte, Peter Tatham, Marcus Bowles and Ben Brooks

The purpose of this paper is to explore the underlying strategic mechanisms of agility in a humanitarian logistics context. Based on the research conducted in business…

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1450

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the underlying strategic mechanisms of agility in a humanitarian logistics context. Based on the research conducted in business disciplines, the paper empirically examines a set of four strategic dimensions (being purposeful, being action-focused, being collaborative, and being learning-oriented) and identifies an emergent relationship between these capabilities and agile humanitarian logistics operations.

Design/methodology/approach

Leadership and management actions perceived to support the four capabilities were identified and used as a basis to complete the exploratory research. Specifically, a case study with the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) was undertaken and, in this context, a qualitative analysis of 29 face-to-face interviews with humanitarian logistics experts working for WFP was conducted.

Findings

The research corroborates the relevance of the four strategic-level capabilities to the humanitarian logistics context and confirms that these capabilities play a role in the development of agility in humanitarian operations. The work also identifies a set of key strategic decision-making areas that relate to the building of agility.

Research limitations/implications

Additional research is needed to further investigate and measure the strategic-level capabilities and to quantify their impact on operational agility. Further research should also be undertaken to extend this study to a wider range of humanitarian organisations.

Originality/value

This paper is the first empirical research that takes a strategic approach to the concept of agility in humanitarian logistics. It highlights that the leaders and managers of humanitarian organisations have a significant role to play in the building of an agile system.

Details

Journal of Humanitarian Logistics and Supply Chain Management, vol. 6 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-6747

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Article
Publication date: 9 July 2020

Seye Babatunde, Richard Oloruntoba and Kingsley Agho

Enormous numbers of people suffer from the effects of disasters and humanitarian crises in Africa, including medical and healthcare emergencies. International response to…

Abstract

Purpose

Enormous numbers of people suffer from the effects of disasters and humanitarian crises in Africa, including medical and healthcare emergencies. International response to the 2014–2016 Ebola pandemic in West Africa and COVID 19 pandemic vividly demonstrates the need for efficient and effective logistics and supply chain systems in bringing succor to impacted and vulnerable communities. This paper critically reviews the academic literature on logistics models for sourcing, delivery and distribution of medical and healthcare products for humanitarian emergencies in Africa from 1990 to 2018. The paper suggests areas for further research and proposes an effective logistics model useful for international and national humanitarian organizations as well as public health authorities in Africa and developing areas.

Design/methodology/approach

The viewpoint paper draws upon a structured comprehensive and critical review of the academic literature on logistics and supply chain management and a qualitative analysis of the literature in 13 leading academic databases covering over 5,550 articles.

Findings

The paper finds significant gaps in the body of logistics and supply chain management research on practical deployable logistics models for sourcing, delivery, and distribution of medical and healthcare products for humanitarian emergencies. The paper suggests a model worthy of consideration by humanitarian and disaster response stakeholders as well as public health authorities in developing countries.

Research limitations/implications

This is a critical literature review paper based on a comprehensive literature research and analysis for the period from 1990 to 2018 from which a viewpoint is formed.

Social implications

This paper advocates for further research on appropriate models of logistics for the sourcing, delivery and distribution of medical and healthcare products to enhance the basic human rights and dignity of vulnerable people in developing countries.

Originality/value

The paper contributes directly to policy on logistics, humanitarian aid, disaster management, public health and health security policy in the developing world including Africa.

Details

Journal of Humanitarian Logistics and Supply Chain Management, vol. 10 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-6747

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Article
Publication date: 7 December 2015

Caroline C Krejci

The purpose of this paper is to present a conceptual framework for a hybrid simulation model that can be used to study the decision making and behaviors of humanitarian

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present a conceptual framework for a hybrid simulation model that can be used to study the decision making and behaviors of humanitarian logistics actors to determine how/whether certain coordination mechanisms enable better relief chain efficiency and effectiveness over time.

Design/methodology/approach

The agent-based portion of the model is used to represent human decision making and interactions in a more realistic way than has been done previously, and the discrete-event simulation (DES) portion of the model allows the movement of vehicles, materials, and information throughout a supply network to be represented in a way that allows for dynamic and stochastic behavior.

Findings

Coordinated efforts by actors in humanitarian logistics operations involve complex interactions and adaptations over time, which can be capture and explored via hybrid agent-based model (ABM)-DES modeling.

Research limitations/implications

This paper describes a framework for a hybrid ABM-DES model. The actual development and implementation of the model, including input data collection and analysis, model development, experimentation, and output data collection and analysis, will be the subject of future work.

Practical implications

The hybrid model framework provides other researchers with a starting point for model development.

Social implications

This paper provides a basis for future modeling and assessment of coordination in humanitarian logistics, an area that is in need of research.

Originality/value

The hybrid simulation modeling framework presented in this paper is a novel application of a new modeling methodology to the problem of coordination in humanitarian logistics.

Details

Journal of Humanitarian Logistics and Supply Chain Management, vol. 5 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-6747

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Article
Publication date: 19 October 2012

Nathan Kunz and Gerald Reiner

The purpose of this paper is to give an up‐to‐date and structured insight into the most recent literature on humanitarian logistics, and suggest trends for future research…

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4157

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to give an up‐to‐date and structured insight into the most recent literature on humanitarian logistics, and suggest trends for future research based on the gaps identified through structured content analysis.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors use a quantitative and qualitative content analysis process to analyse the characteristics of the existing literature, identifying the most studied topics in six structural dimensions, and presenting gaps and recommendations for further research.

Findings

It was found that existing humanitarian logistics research shows too little interest in continuous humanitarian aid operations, in slow onset disasters and man‐made catastrophes. While several papers address different phases of disasters, very few focus particularly on the reconstruction following a disaster. Empirical research is underrepresented in the existing literature as well.

Research limitations/implications

While five of the authors’ structural dimensions are inspired by previous reviews, the sixth dimension (situational factors) is derived from a theoretical framework which the authors developed and which has never been tested before. The validity of the study could therefore be increased by testing this framework.

Originality/value

The authors analyse the broadest set of papers (174) ever covered in previous literature reviews on humanitarian logistics. A quantitative analysis of the papers was conducted in order to analyse the situational factors which have mostly been studied so far in literature. This paper is also the first in humanitarian logistics to use content analysis as the main methodology to analyse literature in a structured way, which is of particular value to the academic community as well as practitioners.

Details

Journal of Humanitarian Logistics and Supply Chain Management, vol. 2 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-6747

Keywords

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