Summary of the meeting in Antwerp
9/10/2009 the meeting of Jan Jansen, Elena Kaledinova and Olga Lyamina devoted to the Sustainability in Logistics project took place in Antwerp, Belgium. Number of theoretical, structural and organizational questions were discussed, some hints for students were worked out. Here I would like to post important information for students, some recommendations and requirements worked out on the meeting.
We strongly recommend students to use this structure of work at the project:
1. Definition of sustainability in logistics. The first and most important thing students have to work at is the definition of sustainability in logistics. As we are working at international project it is possible that you understand sustainability in the different ways but it is compulsory to have common understanding. So we ask each group to publish your own definition of the sustainability in logistics, then discuss all of them and work out common definition.
2. Influencing factors. Students have to define quantitative and qualitative factors influencing sustainability in logistics. It is important to work out an approach of measuring the value of each factor and present it in your work. On this stage your have to be critical and realistic. You must understand that not all factors could be used in the further modeling and not all data is accessible. That means that you have to study all the influencing factors, make purpose selection of them and then proceed with the project
3. Model. On the next stage students have to contrive the model of the quick scan of the company’s activity in the field of sustainability in logistics. To make it quick scan Jan Jansen, Elena Kaledinova and Olga Lyamina agreed that the model should be based on the weighted sum approach. The example of weighted sum approach model is presented in the post “Quick Scan Model” of Jan Jansen at October 4th, 2009. Students’ models should include all the factors which were selected at the previous stage.
4. Questionnaire. To get necessary information and data from the companies it is essential to make questionnaire which you will forward to the contact persons of the chosen companies. Questions you would ask in your questionnaire should be framed to get all possible information by the chosen at the stage 2 factors. Please take into consideration that some information by the chosen factors at the stage 2 could be collected without company’s participation but by the careful students’ study of the project topic and company’s activities. Contact persons of the companies could be managers of different departments as sales manager, purchasing manager, logistics manager, CEO …. It would be valuable to get back fulfilled questionnaires which means information about company’s activities and quantitative and qualitative data for the model from as many executive employees of the company as possible.
5. Application. After students will have got all sufficient information from the companies it will be time for practical implementation of the model
6. Interpretation of the results. Implementation of the model will give some results which should be explained by each group of students and presented in their reports and presentation. These results must show how sustainable company’s activity is in the logistics field. It is also necessary to give some recommendations how to make company more sustainable.
Taking into consideration the fact that you are working for two different countries it is important to know national norms and regulations (especially in the field of sustainability) concerning logistics in your countries. It would be essential to study this information and share your ideas about that.
Dear students please do not skip theoretical part of the project (stages 1,2,3,4). Till the moment you will clearly understand the subject you are working at it would be useless and not professional to contact companies for information digging. Nevertheless the fist contact to the company which most of you have already done was very helpful, valuable, and important to know your target company and its activity.
We agreed to have first on-line (Skype) Meeting on Friday between 13.30 – 14:30 local time in the Netherlands, 17:30 – 18:30 local time in Russia. Till that time please get ready your photo and some words about who you are and what you are interested in to be posted in blog.