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Corporate Social Responsibility

  • Dishonesty and Disaster

    Sustainability failures yield important lessons
    • Mike Dries
    • Antonio Galvao
    January/February 2016

    Virtually every sustainability survey these days shows that the vast majority of companies are formally committed to sustainable development. Many have even woven their commitment into their strategic plan, moving beyond rhetoric to a day-to-day way of doing business.......Read More

  • Sustainability's Gold Standard

    Tiffany & Co. finds value in corporate social responsibility
    • Jennifer Storelli
    November/December 2015

    After a proposed gold mine just outside Yellowstone National Park threatened area waterways and wildlife two decades ago, New York-based Tiffany & Co. stepped up its efforts to preserve the environment and institute sustainable mining practices. These initiatives have blossomed into a greater corporate social responsibility (CSR) policy that includes supply chain transparency, fair labor practices, reducing its carbon footprint, and setting standards for sustainable luxury.......Read More

  • Education First

    Academic programs prepare students to foster business sustainability
    • Richard E. Crandall
    November/December 2015

    Are you interested in the subject of sustainability? You should be. The future of your organization may depend on how well you incorporate sustainability into plans and practices. If you are still a student, the likelihood of finding a good job when you graduate will be enhanced if you know how to help organizations implement sustainability practices profitably. Perhaps you teach in higher education. Then your job may depend on how well you blend sustainability topics into your courses.......Read More

  • Delving into Processes, Customers, and Goals

    Holistic sustainability is key to long-term business viability
    • Stanley E. Griffis
    • M. Bixby Cooper
    November/December 2015

    As part of the ongoing collaboration between Michigan State University's Eli Broad College of Business and APICS, the Beyond the Horizon research project is investigating how the field of supply chain management will evolve in the future. Following interviews with more than 50 firms from around the world, a number of key trends emerged. The initial findings of this first phase of research illustrate the ways in which sustainability is being applied in modern supply chains and how industry professionals are facilitating the shift to more sustainable operations.......Read More

  • Leap In or Pack Up

    Serving the sustainability-conscious marketplace
    • Eric P. Jack
    • John P. Collins
    November/December 2015

    Despite the denials of some, the quest to sustain our environment has captured the attention and imagination of citizens and companies across the globe. Given the many satellites and other technologies deployed in space, we now have numerous views of our fragile blue planet. Perhaps it is this ability to see our vulnerability that has led to scientific and regulatory mandates to reduce the abundance of greenhouse gases that threaten the planet's protective atmosphere.......Read More

  • Sustainability for All Sizes

    Smaller companies can make a big difference
    • Mike Dries
    • Antonio Galvao
    November/December 2015

    A reader of this department recently emailed me. He said that, although he approved of the overarching message I've tried to convey for the past seven years-that the implementation of sustainability practices by businesses not only protects the planet, but also makes good business sense-this department has tended to focus on big businesses. He went on to encourage me to expand the focus to include the impact small-to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are making as well.......Read More

  • Drive Sustainability Performance with S&OP

    Convert a good idea into practical strategies and actions
    • Peter Murray
    November/December 2015

    The days of dealing with sustainability only in terms of compliance and corporate positioning are over. Today, sustainability is about business success via real top-and bottom-line performance. Companies of all kinds must manage complex issues driven by global competition, speed, and the visibility and volume of information out there. Progress is difficult, and change often seems impossible.......Read More

  • A Dirty Business

    Strategies for cleaning up distribution and logistics
    • Gary A. Smith
    November/December 2015

    When supply chain professionals think about distribution and logistics, the first factor that usually comes to mind is infrastructure-the facilities, transportation modes, procedures, systems, and technologies we use throughout the supply network. Although there are some exceptions, most organizations have distribution operations that are a mixture of old and new buildings and equipment.......Read More

  • The Paperless Promise

    The internet of things supports sustainable business
    • Dave Turbide
    November/December 2015

    As the use of computers became more widespread in business, people expected a dramatic reduction in the need for paper. In theory, data would be available on screen, and there would no longer be a need to create, store, and manage forms and reports. But we all know what really happened. Computers only increased the amount of paper used as vie printed out voluminous reports from all of that additional data that was being generated.......Read More

  • Idea Seeds Create Growth Opportunities

    Even small steps toward sustainability can offer a value payoff
    • Jonathan Thatcher
    November/December 2015

    Reader K.W. writes: I am early in my career and want to help advance sustainability in my organization. I see potential opportunities but find it challenging to act on them with so many other tasks and responsibilities assigned to my role. What do you recommend?......Read More

  • Getting Smarter About People, Planet, and Profit

    Universities prepare new leaders
    • Steven Dunn
    November/December 2015

    The concept of greening the supply chain to drive the triple bottom line of economic, social, and environmental impact first began appearing in the mid-1990s. Businesses adopted models that showed how to gain a competitive advantage by making daily operational decisions up and down the supply chain that take into account sustainability performance.......Read More

  • The Sustainability Knowledge Gap

    Practical strategies for global awareness and engagement
    • Elizabeth Rennie
    November/December 2015

    Infusing sustainability throughout an entire company—or better yet, an entire supply chain requires a thoughtful, long-term approach. The initiative must be purposeful, future focused, and personal. Successful organizations are those that aim to meet these standards deliberately, always keeping in mind the unique needs of each person involved and sustainability's essentially holistic nature. ......Read More

  • Going Green and Saving Green

    Quality Bicycle Products showcases its environmental values
    • Kimberly Brown
    November/December 2015

    Quality Bicycle Products (QBP) puts a premium on ensuring its buildings, business practices, and employee benefits support the environment. After all, cyclists want to ride in the fresh air along clean paths and waterways. The company can point to a wide range of sustainability activities that show how businesses all along the supply chain can improve the environment and likely their bottom lines.......Read More

  • Doing Right and Doing Well

    Sustainability still holds key to success
    • Antonio Galvao
    September/October 2015

    Since this department’s inception more than seven years ago, APICS magazine has been publishing sustainability messages that are important to supply chain professionals. Among these issues was a forecast that sustainability principles were destined to be reflected in business strategies around the world.......Read More

  • Learning from Sustainability Innovators

    Follow their lead to enhance efficiency
    • Antonio Galvao
    May/June 2015

    As recently as a decade ago, data showed that most business leaders were skeptical about sustainability. The prevailing sentiments were that sustainability necessarily involved incremental costs and that it was a “nice to have,” not a “need to have.” ......Read More

  • Climate Change Progress Is in Sight

    Paris conference seeks accord
    • Antonio Galvao
    March/April 2015

    On the heels of successful discussions aimed toward minimizing the growth of climate change, world leaders now look forward to adopting a global accord. A high-level agreement to limit the world’s aggregate greenhouse gas emissions has been in place since 1992.......Read More

  • A Crystal Clear Message

    It’s all about the water
    • Antonio Galvao
    January/February 2015

    Freshwater has been in the spotlight quite a bit recently. From scientific magazines to seminars across the globe, freshwater’s importance is being reinforced with a special focus on the dangers of failing to protect this most precious resource.......Read More

  • Peril and Prospect

    Examining the effect of plastics in the supply chain
    • Antonio Galvao
    September/October 2014

    Each year, more than 280 million metric tons of plastic are produced globally. This reflects a dramatic increase in production since the beginning of the last century, when this versatile material was first introduced.......Read More

  • Keep Up the Good Work

    Investigating the operation of today’s humanitarian supply chains
    • Bill Glanz
    May/June 2014

    Managing a corporate supply chain is difficult enough; managing a humanitarian supply chain can directly affect the health and welfare of thousands of people who rely on the speedy arrival of food, medicine, and other resources.......Read More

  • Farewell, Fossil Fuels

    Welcome, clean energy
    • Antonio Galvao
    May/June 2014

    We live in a world that becomes increasingly connected each day—a world that needs more energy to work, produce, consume, and progress. At the same time, the population continues to grow, further driving demand for increasingly scarce resources. Clearly, an energy shortage would dramatically affect the way most of us live. Yet, few understand how energy is produced and transported, and many are unaware of the risks associated with energy availability. That has to change.......Read More