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Research Articles & News Updates

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.

Read more, at, "E-Commerce and Omnichannel: a Look Back & Forward" 

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. Listen in at, "Virtual vs. Actual: The New Age of Supply-Chain Education."

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.

Read more at, "Cloud-Centric Storage is taking over: Retail, Auto Manufacturing, and Global Manufacturing"

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."

Read more at, "....'Managing the Dark Side of Close Buyer-Supplier Relationships'"

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.

Read more at, "Recruiting New Talent - 60 Seconds with Douglas Thomas"

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.

Read more at. "Supply Chain by the Numbers..."

Corp/U, Welcome to the CSCR Team!

CSCR is pleased to announce our new corporate sponsor, Corp/U. Partnered with Penn State Executive Programs, Copu/U delivers premiere executive education to the organization's top supply chain leadership.

Read more about our Corporate Sponsors at, "Corp/U, Welcome to the CSCR Team!"

New Trend in Supply Chain: Food Delivery Systems

Grocery delivery services have been expanding across the United States. Companies like Whole Foods, Wal-Mart, 7 Eleven, Amazon, and Shipt Grocery Delivery have been experimenting with expanding their typical business to include grocery delivery systems. Working through an omni-channel supply chain system, these businesses are growing their market share by increasing customer value with added convenience and accessibility.  For many of these companies, customers will be able to order their groceries or items online and be able to pick them up easily in the store.

Read more at, "New Trend in Supply Chain: Food Delivery Systems"

Team of All Freshman Undergrads Win Burlington Case Competion

On August 30, 2015, a team of all freshman students won the “Outbound Logistics Case Competition” for Burlington Stores. The first Penn State Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals' (PSCSCMP) case competition of the year was a collaboration between PSCSCMP and Burlington Stores, where six teams of students competed, and the winning team, one of all first year undergraduate students, took home the winning title and individual $100 Visa gift cards. Rob Kooser, Justin Lejeune, Tom O’Donnell, and Frank Seltzer made up the winning team.

Read more at, "Team of All Freshman Undergrads..."

CSCMP 2015 "Women @ Work" Session is becoming more AWESOME!

The CSCMP Conference on September 27-30, 2015, in San Diego, California, is becoming even more AWESOME. Penn State Executive Programs is hosting the 2015 CSCMP Women at Work Session - Beyond Networks: Building Relationships for Career Success where Pete Steinberg, frequent speaker for Penn State Executive Programs and is a principal consultant for Innovative-Thought, will be leading the “Women at Work” session.

Read more at, "CSCMP 2015 'Women @ Work' Session ..."

The Top 15 Supply Chain Universities - Penn State Ranked #2 by SCM World

SCM World recently published "THE TOP 15 SUPPLY CHAIN UNIVERSITIES, A RECRUITER'S GUIDE TO FUTURE TALENT." The Pennsylvania State University was ranked at the #2 spot on the list, falling behind #1, Michigan State University. The goal of the study was to identify which universities are on the “top of the mind” for supply chain executives when asked to select “markers of talent.”

Read more at, "The Top 15 Supply Chain Universities..."

Penn State, Volvo Group discuss research collaboration on intelligent vehicles

UNIVERSITY PARK, JULY 2015 - Penn State's Martin Pietrucha, director of the Thomas D. Larson Pennsylvania Transportation Institute, and Sean Brennan, associate professor of mechanical engineering, met with Volvo representatives and University of California, Berkley's (UCB) Partners for Advanced Transportation Technologies, to discuss a future collaborative research initiative in the development of intelligent commercial vehicles.

Read more at, "Penn State, Volvo Group discuss research collaboration on intelligent vehicles."

On the road this fall with CSCR and Penn State Smeal Supply Chain

CSCR and Penn State Smeal Supply Chain will be traveling the U.S. this fall to exhibit at CSCMP 2015 Global Conference, APICS 2015, and PARCEL Forum 15.

Read more at, "On the road this fall..."

Supply Chain Students are getting even more – AWESOME

The Awesome Excellence in Education Scholarship is an AWESOME scholarship awarded to women enrolled in top universities with supply chain programs. At the university level, faculty members are asked to nominate an aspiring female supply chain student who demonstrates exemplary leadership skills and high potential in the field.

Read more at, "Supply Chain Students are getting even more - AWESOME"

CSCR welcomes General Electric, Walmart, Lockheed Martin, and Sunoco as sponsors

CSCR is pleased to announce our newest sponsors, General Electric, Walmart, Lockheed Martin, and Sunoco. The partnership with our diverse sponsor base enables CSCR to provide solutions to the challenges currently facing the supply chain business community.

Read more at, "CSCR welcomes new sponsors"

New scholarship will honor Smeal faculty member Robert Novack

John J. Coyle, founding director of the Center for Supply Chain Research at Smeal and professor emeritus of business administration, is spearheading fundraising efforts for a new undergraduate scholarship named for Robert Novack, associate professor of supply chain and information systems.

Read more at, "New scholarship will honor Smeal faculty member Robert Novack"

2015 Dr. Robert Pashek Award winners announced at the 25th Annual R. Hadly Waters Supply Chain Symposium

On April 16, 2015, the 25th annual R. Hadly Waters Supply Chain Symposium was held at the Penn Stater Conference Center, University Park, Pennsylvania. Dr. R. Hadly Waters (1908-1988) began his career at Penn State in 1936 in the College of Liberal Arts, where he taught courses focusing on transportation and traffic management. These courses became the foundation upon which the Smeal College of Business's top-ranked supply chain curriculum was built.

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Lean business approach helps hospitals run more efficiently

Implementing a well-established business approach allowed physicians to shave hours off pediatric patient discharges without affecting readmission rates, according to researchers at Penn State Hershey Children's Hospital.

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Penn State to offer courses to military community at San Diego Marine base

Penn State will begin offering select courses this fall at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot in San Diego with the goal of giving military personnel more access to a college degree—including a Master of professional studies in supply chain management. 

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“Fostering a ‘Goldilocks’ Procurement Strategy"

The Center of Supply Chain Research Director Christopher Craighead explaining what he called the “Goldilocks” Procurement Strategy (GPS), which focuses on balancing the five competitive levers of procurement.

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Software Advice ranks Smeal supply chain technology undergraduate education No. 1

The Penn State Smeal College of Business has earned the No. 1 rank in undergraduate supply chain technology education and the No. 4 spot in graduate education, according to Software Advice, a subsidiary of IT research and advisory firm Gartner.

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Graduate Certification in Business Analytics 

The new online Graduate Certificate in Business Analytics from the Penn State Smeal College of Business, delivered in partnership with Penn State World Campus, enables business professionals to develop the quantitative and managerial skills for exploring and analyzing large or complex data sets to support data-driven business decisions.

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Five new supply chain offerings on Penn State Executive Programs spring/summer portfolio of offerings

Penn State Executive Programs, part of the Smeal College of Business, has introduced five new supply chain open-enrollment programs among its spring and early summer offerings. Registration for all programs is now open.

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Poster session highlights latest evolution in GE-funded natural gas initiative 

A group of GE executives from around the country converged on campus recently to meet with representatives from the Smeal College of Business and three other Penn State colleges as part of the continuing evolution of the Center for Collaborative Research on Intelligent Natural Gas Supply Systems (CCRINGSS).

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Three Smeal alumni among six Penn Staters on list of under-30 supply chain stars

Six Penn State graduates, including three from the Smeal College of Business, were recently named to the 30 Under 30 Rising Supply Chain Stars list, as compiled by ThomasNet, the Institute for Supply Management (ISM), and Inbound Logistics magazine.

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EY and IntegriChain partner with CSCR

CSCR specifically seeks out companies at the forefront of supply chain execution and innovation to join our sponsor base. We are very excited to announce our new partnership with EY and IntegriChain.

For company profiles... 

CSCR sponsored research is featured in CSCMP's Supply Chain Quarterly

Research by Dr. John Coyle, professor emeritus of supply chain management and the director of corporate relations for the Smeal College of Business's Center for Supply Chain Research, and Dr. Kusumal Ruamsook, instructor of supply chain and information systems and a research associate for the Center, was featured in the recent Council for Supply Chain Management Professional's Supply Chain Quarterly.  "T = MIC2: Game-changing trends and supply chain's "new normal"," explores the five technologies of the future and the "new normal" characteristics of future supply chains.

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Why Supply Chain is the Best Career in Business

Many people often ask the question "What do you do for a living?" If you find yourself in the field of Supply Chain, you often get a puzzled look when answering that question. This confused perception of what Supply Chain actually is has been recently discussed by Matt Davis, Senior Vice President of Research at SCM World and affiliated faculty member at Penn State's CSCR.

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Smeal Again Ranks No. 1 for Graduate Supply Chain Education

The Penn State Smeal College of Business once again ranks No. 1 in graduate supply chain education according to a report from IT research and advisory firm Gartner, which also ranked the college best for undergraduate supply chain education in August.

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Dr. John C. Langley -The State of Logistics Outsourcing

Dr. John C. Langley, Penn State Supply Chain and Information Systems Clinical Professor, initiated the 2015 Third-Party Logistics Study.

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CSCR Announces New Corporate Sponsors

CSCR is very pleased to announce that two new Corporate Sponsors have joined the CSCR family.  We are grateful for their support and look forward to their participation in shaping CSCR’s future.

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Grenoble Recognized by CSCR Sponsors and Faculty Affiliates for Connecting Supply Chain Academia and Industry for the Past 25 Years

Dr. Skip Grenoble, former Executive Director of the Penn State Center for Supply Chain Research, was honored recently for his achievement in bringing supply chain academia and industry together.

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Professor Charles Nicholson Helps Dairy Farmers Mitigate Financial Risks

Professor Charles Nicholson, clinical associate professor of supply chain management at the Penn State Smeal College of Business, is contributing to the introduction of the Margin Protection Program for Dairy Producers (MPP), a government-sponsored insurance initiative to help the nation’s dairy farmers mitigate their financial risks. Nicholson is part of a consortium of land-grant university economists from Cornell, Illinois, Michigan State, Minnesota, Ohio State, and Wisconsin that has developed a web-based tool along with related outreach and education strategies to assist farmers with MPP-related decisions.

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Supply Chain Researchers Claim a Shift Toward 'Supply Ecosystems'

A new article from Penn State Smeal College of Business faculty member Christopher W. Craighead and colleagues David Ketchen at Auburn University—a 1994 graduate of the Smeal Ph.D. Program—and Russell Crook at the University of Tennessee suggest that disruptive technologies are creating an evolution from supply chains to “supply ecosystems.” The article, “From Supply Chains to Supply Ecosystems: Implications for Strategic Sourcing Research and Practice,” will appear in a forthcoming issue of Journal of Business Logistics.

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GE to Invest $10 million in Development of a New Innovation Center to Study Natural Gas Supply Chains

GE has made the pledge to invest nearly $10 million in developing a new innovation center focused on creating innovative advancements in the natural gas industry. The development will be called the "The Center for Collaborative Research on Intelligent Natural Gas Supply Systems" at Penn State (CCRINGSS). The new center will bring together stakeholders from colleges of Engineering, Mineral Sciences, Information Sciences and Technology, and CSCR (Center for Supply Chain Research) as well as INGaR (Institute for Natural Gas Research).

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Professor Terry Harrison Selected to Lead Smeal College of Business Sustainability Efforts

Terry Harrison, professor of supply chain and information systems, has been selected to lead the Penn State Smeal College of Business sustainability initiative. The main focus of the sustainability program is to bring challenges into discussion through cross-functional outlets such as teaching, research, outreach, and operations.

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Penn State Ranked #1 Among the Best Online Master in Supply Chain Management Degree Programs

Penn State World Campus’s online M.P.S. in Supply Chain Management has been ranked #1 by TheBestSchools.org.

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Why Aren't Consumers Buying Remanufactured Products?

Firms looking to increase market share of remanufactured consumer products will have to overcome a big barrier to do so, according to a recent study from the Penn State Smeal College of Business. Findings from faculty members Meg Meloy and V. Daniel R. Guide, Jr., indicate that consumers perceive many categories of remanufactured products as dirty and disgusting.

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CSCR Research Director Weighs in on the "Future of Business: Supply Chain"

Christopher Craighead, research director for the Center for Supply Chain Research and Rothkopf Professor and associate professor of Supply Chain Management in the Supply Chain and Information Systems department, weighs in on a study by The Economist Intelligence Unit on the use of data and analytics to significantly improve supply chain connectivity and agility.

To read the entire report available on The Economist Insights Website...

CSCR Sponsors and Recruiters Named in the Gartner Supply Chain Top 25

The Center for Supply Chain Research (CSCR) would like to congratulate all the Gartner Supply Chain Top 25.  We are especially pleased to report that we have involvement with over half of the Top 25 through CSCR sponsorship and/or recruitment activities with Smeal College of Business graduate and undergraduate supply chain students.

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Collaboration with Industry Shapes 25 Years of Center for Supply Chain Research

The Penn State Smeal College of Business Center for Supply Chain Research (CSCR) celebrated its 25th anniversary at its spring 2014 Corporate Sponsor meeting, held at the end of April at the Penn Stater Hotel and Conference Center.

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Smeal Professor Balances Supply and Demand with Honors Program

Robert Novack, an associate professor of Supply Chain and Information Systems in the Smeal College of Business and associate director of the Center for Supply Chain Research, recently completed his first year as a member of the Schreyer Honors College's Distinguished Honors Faculty Program (DHFP). DHFP introduces Schreyer Scholars from across the University to participating faculty members' interests and expertise.

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Erb Receives 2014 Pashek Award

Pamela Erb, the vice president of Supply Chain for Wegmans Food Markets, Inc., received the 2014 Pashek Award at the 24th Annual R. Hadly Waters Supply Chain Symposium held on April 24th at University Park, Pennsylvania.

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Smeal's Center for Supply Chain Research Names Next Executive Director

On Aug. 1, Steve Tracey will become the next executive director of the Penn State Smeal College of Business Center for Supply Chain Research. As executive director, Tracey will lead the vision and strategy for the center and serve as an ambassador and spokesperson for supply chain activities at Penn State.

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Early Career Professorship Honoring John Coyle Will Support Faculty Recruitment

In honor of Professor John Coyle, an anonymous donor has committed a gift of $334,000 to establish the Dr. John Coyle Early Career Professorship in Supply Chain. Coyle is currently professor emeritus of business administration and director of corporate sponsors for the Center for Supply Chain Research. The Penn State Faculty Endowment Challenge has agreed to match funds, making it worth a total of $500,000.

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CSCR Announces New Faculty Affiliates (Spring 2014)

CSCR is pleased to announced four new faculty affiliates for Spring 2014.  Matthew Davis, Jason Acimovic, Christopher Parker, and Aydin Alptekinoglu will be joining the team.  The role of faculty affiliates are to provide support to the Center for Supply Chain Research in various areas such as distribution, warehousing, transportation, procurement and supply, customer service, systems modeling, logistics, information systems, and more.

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Penn State Supply Chain Education Highly Ranked

Smeal College of Business Supply Chain Education has been ranked #3 according to a recent article in last year’s Chief Supply Chain Officer Report.

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Penn State Names New President

The 18th president of Penn State has been named by the University's Board of Trustees. Eric J. Barron, a former dean at Penn State and current leader of Florida State University, will begin as Penn State's next president on May 12, 2014.

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The 24th Annual R. Hadly Waters Supply Chain Symposium

The 24th Annual R. Hadly Waters Supply Chain Symposium, Innovative Logistics – The Supply Chain Strategy Enabler, will be held on April 24th, 2014, at The Penn Stater Conference Center, University Park, PA.

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Supply Chain Alum Wins “2014 Distinguished Alumni Award”

Karen Quintos, Dell Chief Marketing Officer, has been selected as one of eight to receive the 2014 Distinguished Alumni Award.  Karen holds a master’s degree in marketing and international business from New York University and a bachelor of science in supply chain management from Penn State University.

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CSCR Announces New Corporate Sponsors (Spring 2014)

CSCR is very pleased to announce that nine new Corporate Sponsors have joined the CSCR family.  We are grateful for their support and look forward to their participation in shaping CSCR’s future.

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Terry Harrison Says Results-driven Procurement Requires Strategic Reevaluation

In an effort to take control over sustainability and social innovation in the Smeal College of Business, Professor Terry Harrison and students began working with the institution’s procurement services departments to get hands-on experience in implementing sustainable, cost- effective sourcing practices while also promoting green logistics within the university.

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John Jordan Delivers Address At TEDxPSU

On Sunday, March 2nd, TEDxPSU, the Penn State chapter of TED talks, one of the largest non-profit conferences in the country, welcomed 14 speakers to its “Go Further ” conference.

John M. Jordan, Clinical Professor, Department of Supply Chain and Management and Information Systems at Penn State, was one of the 14 featured speakers.

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"The Perfect Storm?"

Recently, the Supply Chain Management Review published an article called, "The Perfect Storm."

Authors, Kusumal Ruamsook, Research Associate at CSCR and Christopher Craighead, Director of Research at CSCR came together to discuss how they believe that a supply chain talent perfect storm could be in the offing.

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