Sustainable Operations Management is an ever-developing field: The process of making a supply chain truly sustainable can never have a well-defined endpoint. Instead, a more sustainable supply chain is one that is better at identifying current and future environmental and social impacts, and finding ways to mitigate those. For a firm to thrive, it is increasingly imperative that it be aware of economic, environmental and social dimensions of the entire supply chain it belongs to, and that it proactively manages those. Furthermore, as firms become progressively more tightly coupled in global supply chains, risks and opportunities associated with activities upstream or downstream will increasingly impinge upon their own wellbeing.
The widespread concern over global warming puts pressure on companies to reduce carbon emissions and become green. The external pressure on the companies is basically three-fold: customers, regulations, and environmental groups. It is imminent that the global pressure will keep increasing and that sustainability will, and should, increasingly drive supply chain management decisions. While sustainability is generally seen as a costly effort, evidence shows that those companies who focus on sustainability generally perform better in the stock market than the industry average.
The chair is currently working on problems such as supply chain collaboration for sustainability, sustainable technology choices for transportation, supplier sustainability assessment and improvement, and circular economy.