There are multiple ways in which companies can work with and have access to the Vlerick Centre for Supply Chain Excellence: through joint research for business projects, educational programmes, student projects, ...

By working together with the Vlerick Centre for Supply Chain Excellence, you have access to our faculty and their research. You also get connected to other faculty in the area of supply chain management, through our contact with colleagues in universities and business schools around the world.

 Research for Business

Chair companies and prime foundation partners join forces with us in practice-based research projects. The topics for these research for business projects are selected in close contact with our partner companies. This ensures that we study supply chain topics that are of interest to our partners. The ultimate goal of the research projects is to develop best practices and share experiences.

The outcome of the research is typically two-fold: research results are published in academic journals and presented at academic conferences on the one hand, and the research develops into a deliverable that appeals to the partner companies on the other hand. This may be a decision making tool, a benchmark report, a discussion paper, a teaching case... which offers the partner new insights, yet at the same time gives the research visibility towards the outside world.

Some examples of recent research for business projects in the area of supply chain management.

Current projects:

  • Forecasting Research Centre: Our partner SAS supports us in the development of a forecasting maturity assessment model for benchmarking. The Centre studies how ‘human judgment’ can be optimally combined with statistical forecasting models in order to improve the decision-making and to boost the financial benefits of forecasting for companies. The research is performed on the crossroads of different research fields: Organisational Behaviour, Sales & Marketing, Operations and Supply Chain.
  • Collaborative logistics in NexTrust consortium: NexTrust is a European Commission Horizon2020 project with a 30 member consortium of some of Europe’s leading thinkers on collaborative logistics. Its objective is to increase efficiency and sustainability in logistics by developing an innovative business model with interconnected, trusted, collaborative networks along the entire supply chain. The NexTrust project focuses on research activities that create stickiness for collaboration in the market, validated through various pilot cases in live conditions.
    Vlerick press: "NexTrust consortium receives European funding for research on collaboration across supply chain networks."
  • Operations Management for Hospitals: The MINOZ Research Centre contributes to a better understanding of operational processes and management problems in hospitals. Although hospitals can vary substantially in the way they organize care delivery and address the patient needs, there are fundamental operational problems that are generic and hence applicable to every partner and member involved in this project. This year’s research interest is directed toward improved operations of the non-surgical day centers.
  • EANDIS Chair in Resilient Supply Chains: EANDIS is a leader in the field of energy with commitment to bring electricity and gas to people efficiently and safely; with a clear interest in developing an integrated supply chain. Although implementation of the modern metering technology, although facilitates the evolution of traditional grids to smart grids, at the same time it imposes technology adoption challenges to the network. Integration of alternative renewable energy sources into the new grid will also change the conventional view of the supplier/distributor/consumer interactions. In this complex setting, disruption is inevitable and supply chain resilience a necessity. Professor Dr Ir Behzad Samii acts as the EANDIS Chair Professor and conducts research in designing, implementing, and managing resilient supply chains. This Chair is part of Vlerick’s sector focus on energy.

Past projects:

  • Supply Chain Contribution to Profitable Growth: with our partner PwC, we have identified the role the supply chain plays in impacting not only the bottom line, but also sales and profitability. We developed a framework that maps the different supply chain practices companies can focus on in order to accomplish profitable growth. This framework was tested and validated with 16 multinational companies during interviews and several interactive C-level workshops. A white paper with the research results has been published in Spring 2015. Download the full research report “The supply chain: the new engine for profitable growth”.
  • Managing the healthcare supply chain: this network brings together companies from different levels in the healthcare supply chain: manufacturers, distributors, logistics service providers and healthcare institutions. Actual topics in the healthcare supply chain are selected in cooperation. They are subject to research that intends to develop a better understanding of the major opportunities for supply chain improvements. Companies are stimulated to reflect, interact and translate the research finding into their own business environment.
  • Sustainable logistics: assessment of challenges and practices in sustainable supply chain management.
  • Supply Chain Risk Management: with our partner MÖBIUS, we have identified and classified the different types of supply chain risks. One of the major results of the study has been the development of a simulation model that enables companies to test their supply chain against that list of supply chain risks and to develop mitigation strategies to cope with these supply chain risks.
  • The Supply Chain Executive: as part of the Goodman Chair of Logistics, we have studied the role and position of the supply chain executive in the organization. Our research has focused on three industries: food and beverage, pharmaceuticals and chemicals. Through survey based research, we learned that supply chain management has become a mature profession of strategic importance. However, the scope of the function, and the position in the organization chart, clearly differs across industries.

Knowledge in Action

Interested in the lessons learned of our research for your company? Find out more about our latest research articles!

& Rankings

Equis Association of MBAs AACSB Financial Times