samedi 7 janvier 2012

Fundamentals of Supply Chain Theory by Lawrence V. Snyder & Zuo-Jun Max Shen - Book review

Fundamentals of Supply Chain Theory

By: Lawrence V. Snyder, Ph.D., Zuo-Jun Max Shen, Ph.D.

Published: August 23, 2011
Format: Hardcover, 400 pages
ISBN-10: 0470521309
ISBN-13: 978-0470521304
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

"We wrote this book to help codify the foundations of this emerging supply chain theory and to demonstrate how recent developments build upon the classical models. Our focus is primarily on the seminal models and algorithms of supply chain theory - the building blocks that underlie much of the supply chain literature", write Associate Professor in the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering at Lehigh University, Lawrence V. Snyder, Ph.D.; and Chancellor's Professor in the Department of Industrial Engineering and Operations Research at the University of California, Berkeley, Zuo-Jun Max Shen, Ph.D., in their comprehensive and authoritative book Fundamentals of Supply Chain Theory. The authors describe the strategic and tactical foundations of supply chain management, and provide the key mathematical models that combine the classical models and leading edge algorithms and modeling concepts.

Lawrence V. Snyder (photo left) and Zuo-Jun Max Shen understand that supply chain management provides a competitive advantage to firms that understand the strategy and tactics of the field. The authors provide mathematical models and algorithms that provide the building blocks for both study and application of supply chain theory. The authors take a wide, overall perspective of supply chain management that spotlights the connections between various supply chain models. To build on the classical supply chain theory, the authors offer a mathematical approach for the study of supply chains, including a wide range of disciplines and individual specializations. Because of this multi-disciplinary audience, the book includes a wide array of tools including operations research, mathematics, and computer science.

Zuo-Jun Max Shen (photo left) and Lawrence V. Snyder demonstrate the crucial models for optimizing all aspects of the supply chain from planning, design, operation, and system evaluation. The authors offer guidance in understanding both centralized and decentralized supply chains, including the models for optimizing both types.

The centralized supply chain models include:

* Forecasting and demand modeling
* Deterministic inventory models
* Stochastic inventory models
* Multi-Echelon inventory models
* Processes for dealing with uncertainty in inventory optimization and facility location
* Facility location models
* Process flexibility

The decentralized supply chain models include:

* The bullwhip effect
* Supply chain contracts
* Auctions

For me, the power of the book is how Lawrence V. Snyder and Zuo-Jun Max Shen recognize that a complete understanding of modern and classical supply chain theory requires a mathematical background. The authors point out that it's not necessary to be an expert in all areas of mathematics, programming, game theory, and simulations. They do expect a familiarity with basic optimization theory, know how to formulate a linear program, understand how branch and bound works, and that the reader can perform a simple line search method. An understanding of probability distributions and calculus is also necessary, but the authors provide the information, of what the reader or student needs to know, so as to facilitate a more rapid grasp of the principles and methodology.

With a solid level of mathematical maturity, concepts and models will be understandable and supportive for the student or practitioner. The book contains the essential formulas,and is presented in a step by step format that guides the student and other professionals toward a complete understanding of the subject material. The core of the book is the inventory-theoretical material. Extensive and easy to use appendices offer additional models, formulas, and basics of advanced mathematics. A useful set of homework problems follow each chapter, with additional problems available in the appendices.

I highly recommend the landmark and mathematics based book Fundamentals of Supply Chain Theory by Lawrence V. Snyder, Ph.D., and Zuo-Jun Max Shen,Ph.D., to anyone with an interest in a solid mathematical approach to supply chain management. These readers include students, graduate students, faculty, researchers, business leaders, managers, engineers, and practitioners of supply chain management. This book will provide a very strong mathematical basis for all decision making, through all phases of a supply chain, in any industry.

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