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Research Articles & News Updates

Lanetix and CSCR: A Partnership Shaping Innovation

For over 25 years, the cornerstone of Penn State’s Center for Supply Chain Research (CSCR)’s success has relied on strong partnerships with corporate sponsors to expand supply chain knowledge and advance best practices while addressing today’s industry challenges. CSCR is pleased to announce its continued partnership with corporate sponsor, Lanetix, the leading CRM, workflow and collaboration software developer exclusively focused on logistics services providers and supply chain professionals.

Gartner ranks Penn State Smeal No. 1 in supply chain graduate, undergraduate education

Gartner, Inc., has again ranked the Penn State Smeal College of Business No. 1 in supply chain graduate and undergraduate education. 

Gartner’s report indicates that Penn State undergraduate education scored among the top two schools as an industry value leader, which tend to have large, externally facing supply chain centers and strong internship participation with big companies. Smeal’s Center for Supply Chain Research (CSCR) is a leader in research, executive education, symposia, and talent development.

CSCR's Steve Tracey discusses the pros and cons of today's supply chain certifications with Supply Chain Management Review. “Before you sign up, figure out if it’s going to benefit you and or your firm, and whether your employer is going to put a value on the fact that you’ve completed this type of coursework,” says Tracey. “And while no education is ‘bad,’ in a sense that we should always be learning, in some cases you may just be getting a certification for your own personal benefit.”

CSCR Director, Steve Tracey, on SDI's Series: A Partner Perspective

SDI puts together a series of insightful interviews with top industry professionals. SDI recently sat down with CSCR's Executive Director, Steve Tracey. The conversation began with Tracey's industry background and how he moved into a supply chain role. According to Tracey: "I arrived in Supply Chain Management by accident. I was working at American Tool Company, and they had a business unit in need of a turnaround. I went into this turnaround situation as a finance guy, and the only finance issue was that their operations needed help....after I headed into an operations role in the company."

CSCR Sponsors Named in Gartner Rankings of the 2016 Supply Chain Top 25

CSCR corporate sponsors, Unilever, Walmart, BASF, Johnson & Johnson, GlaxoSmithKline, and Kimberly-Clark, have made the list of Gartner's 2016 Supply Chain top 25. Gartner releases their report of supply chain top 25 based on a platform for insights, learning, debate and contribution to the rising influence of supply chain practices on the global economy. The report looks at the concept of running a demand-driven value network (DDVN), customer-driven partner integration, as well as a series of calculations analyzing each company on certain criteria, while taking into account the importance of corporate social responsibility.

The MRO Revolution: Leaders, Evolvers, and Trailors

MRO management research by CSCR and North Bay, Inc., was featured in the May/June 2016 issue of "Supply Chain Management Review." The article expounds on how, "Costs associated with MRO are substantial, and rising; and the substandard management of MRO activities hurts performance in many unforeseen ways." The research team includes Executive Director, Steve Tracey, Research Associate, Kusumal Ruamsook, and Program Director, Lauren Bechtel, all of CSCR, and North Bay, Inc.'s founder, Carol Colgan.

Smeal students part of winning team in inaugural Supply Chain Entrepreneurship Pitch Contest

Two Penn State Smeal College of Business undergraduate students were on the winning team for the inaugural Smeal Supply Chain Entrepreneurship Pitch Contest held in mid-April. Caity Mcdade, a junior Supply Chain and Information Systems (SCIS) major, and Stephanie Mock, a sophomore SCIS/Economics dual major, were joined on the Connexion group by junior Computer Science major Kenneth Au and Vamshi Voruganti, a junior Industrial Engineering major.

CSCR and the Sapphire Leadership Academic Program partner with The Jared Box Project

The Jared Box Project started in 2001 by the children at Our Lady of Victory School in State College, Pennsylvania, to honor their classmate and friend, Jared. Jared was diagnosed with an incurable brainstem tumor in 1999. He was an exemplary role model of faith, wisdom, and compassion for others at the very early age of five. Throughout his time in the hospital, Jared carried a backpack full of toys to share and play with the other children in the hospital, and his contagious smile brightened the days for many very sick young patients like himself.

4 New Innovative SCM Education Trends

As supply chain education is transforming, Supply Chain Management Review identified four innovative supply chain education trends. Today's supply chain education network looks a lot different than it did five to ten years ago. Education delivery is changing the way students access executive education, incorporating massive open online courses (MOOCs), along with educational development by universities and third party contractors. CSCR's Executive Director, Steve Tracey, CorpU partners, and other experts weigh in on the new models of higher education.

CEO of PPC Lubricants and CEO of Guttman Energy, Inc. discuss energy industry during Penn State Smeal Executive Insights visit

John M. Arnold, chairman, CEO, and owner of PPC Lubricants, Inc., and Alan R. Guttman, CEO of Guttman Energy, Inc., discussed the energy industry and their approaches to decision making and leadership as part of the Penn State Smeal College of Business Executive Insights session on Friday. The two covered many topics such as: market volatility, a logistics-focused business, managing risk and culture. Both Arnold and Guttman are PSU alumni and now part of a list of more than 25 top business leaders who have participated in Executive Insights.

Where in the World Will Your Customers Be?

Professor of Global Management Policies and Founding Director of The Center for Global Business Studies at the Smeal College of Business, Penn State, Dr. Farborz Ghadar, recently made a contribution to Inside Supply Management Magazine identifying the future of customers with dramatic demographic changes - from aging populations to shifting growth patterns. Today, demographic trends are transforming the world, changing economic patterns, generating new dependencies, and altering geopolitical balances.

SCM World Survey Reveals Smeal Remains Top-Ranked!

SCM World recently released their fourth annual survey of the top supply chain universities in terms of, "Which universities or business schools are markers of supply chain talent?" Smeal College of Business ranked #2 of the top 100 universities!

E-Commerce and Omnichannel: a Look Back & Forward

In 2015, we saw the emergence of the omnichannel shopper. Consumers are shopping on multiple platforms in store and online - the whole shopping experience is changing. Now looking forward into 2016, we see e-commerce dominating the way of the market place with new technologies and expanding trends.

Interview with CSCR and CorpU on Virtual Supply Chain Education

When it comes to teaching the complexities of supply-chain management, is digital learning as effective as the traditional in-class experience? Bob Bowman, the managing editor of SupplyChainBrain talks with Alan Todd, founder of the digital learning platform CorpU, and Steve Tracey, executive director of the Center for Supply Chain Research at Penn State about their observations on the ability of students of all ages to absorb knowledge through digital media.

Cloud-Centric Storage is taking over: Retail, Auto Manufacturing, and Global Manufacturing

Cloud-centric storage is not just the future, it’s here and now. In 2014, 42% of the global Internet population was using cloud-centric storage, and by 2019 that figure is expected to grow to 55% - that's about 2 billion people. According to a recent Forbes publication, cloud technology is changing how business is conducted in many industries, including: manufacturing, medical data, health care services, retail, automotive, and finance. Ultimately, moving into a cloud-based environment is very beneficial for supply chain leaders and professionals by cutting costs, decreasing lag time, and improving the overall omni-channel experience for consumers and producers alike.

Penn State Professor, Veronica H. Villena, on "Managing the Dark Side of Close Buyer-Supplier Relationships"

Assistant Professor in the Department of Supply Chain & Information Systems at the Smeal College of Business, Veronica H. Villena, has recently published an article in the November/December issue of Supply Chain Management Review, where she, along with professors from Arizona State University and Instituto de Empresa Business School in Madrid, Spain, discuss "Managing  the Dark Side of Close Buyer-Supplier Relationships." The article discusses inter-company relationships and buyer relationships - how to succeed without falling to the "Dark Side."

Recruiting New Talent - 60 Seconds with Douglas Thomas

October 2015 - Modern Materials Handling recently interviewed Douglas Thomas, professor of Supply Chain Management at Smeal, on how best to recruit new supply chain talent. The talent squeeze is real according to research that Thomas and Deloitte Consulting conducted. At the graduate level, there is a decrease in applications. The Banking and Finance industries are rebounding, and MBAs are choosing these fields rather than supply chain operations, so it's difficult to find qualified talent to fit the jobs that are available in the Supply Chain industry.

Supply Chain by the Numbers feat. Dr. John Langley of Penn State University

Dr. John Langley of Penn State University was quoted in the Supply Chain Digest article, "Supply Chain by the Numbers," during the week of October 8, 2015. The article showcases supply chain news in numbers and global events.