Title: Performance measurement in humanitarian supply chains

Authors: E.A. Van der Laan, M.P. De Brito, D.A. Vergunst

Addresses: Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University, P.O. Box 1738, 3000DR Rotterdam, The Netherlands. ' OTB/TBM-Delft University of Technology, P.O. Box 5030, 2600 GA Delft, The Netherlands. ' Alumnus Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University, P.O. Box 1738, 3000DR Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Abstract: Recent humanitarian disasters, such as the Asian tsunami and Katrina, have pointed out the importance of supply chain management in dealing with the complex emergency situations and risks that humanitarian organisations are faced with. Although performance measurement is known to be crucial for performance improvement, little insight exists in how effective performance indicators can be selected in the humanitarian context. This paper adds to this insight through the use of an extensive literature review to identify necessary conditions for an effective performance measurement system. Subsequently, we conduct a case study at the Dutch filial of Medecins Sans Frontieres to investigate whether these conditions are met or not. It appears that the biggest challenges lie in data accuracy and the fact that the current set of performance indicators is not geared towards future improvement. As MSF is known for its emergency logistics performance, it is not unthinkable that other humanitarian supply chains struggle with the same issues.

Keywords: humanitarian supply chains; supply chain management; SCM; performance measurement; case study; humanitarian logistics; Medecins Sans Frontieres; MSF; data accuracy; performance indicators; disaster response; emergency management; risk assessment; emergency logistics.

DOI: 10.1504/IJRAM.2009.026388

International Journal of Risk Assessment and Management, 2009 Vol.13 No.1, pp.22 - 45

Published online: 09 Jun 2009 *

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