Flexible and integrated supply chains towards an innovative research platform

Nathalie Fabbe-Costes, Marianne Jahre

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper, not in proceedingpeer-review


Purpose of this paper:
Increasingly more companies need supply chains that satisfy individual needs and can
adapt to a changing environment while simultaneously keeping costs down. Hence,
flexible and integrated supply chains are needed. The purpose of this paper is to develop a
conceptual research platform for studies of how companies can develop such solutions.
A systematic review of papers in logistics/SCM on combinations of flexibility and
integration as well as related concepts is undertaken. Results are used as basis for a
discussion of the means supporting flexible and integrated supply chains. In particular the
use of standards and modular design is scrutinized.
The research leads to three findings: 1) the vocabulary of flexibility/integration and related
concepts needs to be stabilised; 2) few studies provide in-depth discussions and advice on
means for combinations of flexibility and integration; 3) modularity and use of standards
provide increased understanding of possible solutions.
Research limitations/implications (if applicable)
We have chosen to focus on inter-organisational SCM literature. This is a conceptual paper
based on literature reviews. Further research should include empirical studies.
Practical implications (if applicable:
Project-based industries such as construction and humanitarian aid as well as companies
that are faced with supply chain disruptions and market turbulence should find the results
on means that permit flexible and integrated supply chains useful.
What is original/value of paper?
A research platform is presented including definitions and discussion of relationships
between integration/flexibility concepts. A structured mapping of means and enablers is
provided. A set of propositions is offered and results can be used for further research as
well as for practical purposes.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages19
Publication statusUnpublished - 2009
Event21th Annual NOFOMA Conference, 2009 - Jönköping, Jönköping, Sweden
Duration: 2009 Jun 112009 Jun 12
Conference number: 21


Conference21th Annual NOFOMA Conference, 2009

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Transport Systems and Logistics


  • Flexibility
  • Integration
  • Agility
  • Leanness
  • Supply chain management
  • Literature review
  • Modular design
  • Standardization


Dive into the research topics of 'Flexible and integrated supply chains towards an innovative research platform'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this