The Connected Supply Chain: Enhancing Risk Management in a Changing World

Mar 2017
Not since the end of World War II have supply chains been as highly exposed to risks as they are now. The Fourth Industrial Revolution poses unprecedented challenges for production and distribution systems. It also creates important opportunities, particularly in risk management. Indeed, new digital technologies will foster the emergence of the connected supply chain as a critical element for risk management. Supply chain connectivity is defined as the seamless flow of materials, information, and financial resources along the supply chain, enabled by two factors: information systems connectivity and physical connectivity. This paper analyzes both factors and how new technologies can improve them. It also discusses the barriers that prevent the achievement of a connected supply chain and, with it, improved risk management. Finally, it discusses the role that the public sector can play in overcoming these barriers.