International Purchasing and Supply

Education and Research Association

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  • 30 Jun 2020 08:51 | Jenny Backstrand (Administrator)

    Dear IPSERA friends and family,

    Now my IPSERA presidency is over, three wonderful years have come to an end. My last official appearance was at the end of May in the virtual AGM, where - due to the Corona pandemic a bit different than usual - I passed the baton on to Donna, a certainly excellent new president! Donna gave a great farewell speech with voices from the Committee, which I really enjoyed and which I will look back on from time to time in the future.

    Long before that I was already a member of the Executive Committee. I have always wished to bring IPSERA to Dortmund and in 2016 we organised the IPSERA Annual Conference here, part of the programme took also place in the stadium of Borussia Dortmund J One year later, in 2017, I became President and was able to lead through the conferences in Hungary, Athens and Milan. All in all I gained a lot of amazing experiences and learned a lot at IPSERA. I have also made many new friends. It was an honour and a pleasure for me to give IPSERA back a little bit of what I got from this unique network. It was fun with you, colleagues!

    I will not withdraw completely, I will remain active. I hope to see you again in person in Knoxville next year at the latest.

    Yours, Michael.

  • 30 Jun 2020 08:50 | Jenny Backstrand (Administrator)

    Dear IPSERA friends,

    For many reasons, 2020 will be remembered as a special year. COVID-19 confronted us with unique challenges, both in our personal and professional lives. It made us realize that despite all the progress we have made in science, the world is still not malleable. Never before we had to cancel an IPSERA conference…, it was a wise and brave decision that was made by the organizing committee in the uncertain early days of the pandemic. On the upside, however, never before did so many world leaders spoke about purchasing and supply chain management. The spotlight is on our profession! Many organizations are reconsidering their global supply chains, and/or developing new (local!) sourcing strategies for key spend categories. Most likely, academics will be contacted to provide evidence and/or inspiration for these new strategies. If not, make yourself heard!

    Half of the RICC team (and RICC dog) discussing bottleneck sourcing of face-masks during COVID-19 - With at least the prescribed 1,5 distance

    Since March 2019, we are a Regional IPSERA Center of Competence (RICC) and we are very happy that we invested in developing our team just before the pandemic. Our PSCM team almost doubled in size!

    Beginning of RICC team - today the group is double the size!

    We launched our Brightlands Institute for Supply Chain Innovation (BISCI) which is aimed at stimulating digital and sustainable supply chain innovations in our region. We couldn’t be more happy to have recruited Professor Bart Vos (former Tilburg University and winner of IPSERA 2020 Best Paper Award) and Ton Geurts (former CPO of Bekaert, DSM and AkzoNobel) as our BISCI leaders.

    Snapshots from the BISCI opening at the Villaflora in Venlo, NL

    Something else that we are proud of is that we were invited by Professor Finn Wynstra (RSM Erasmus University) to take over the organization of WION. This annual 2-day ‘mini IPSERA conference’ (>40 participants in 2020) brings together PSM academics that are working for BeNeLux Universities and/or Universities of Applied Sciences.

    Taking over the chairing of the annual WION meeting in Lunteren, NL

    In 2019, we contributed to the IPSERA community in many ways (e.g. serving on the executive board, participating in the SIG ‘Purchasing and Product Innovation’, acting as financial auditor, serving on the conference scientific committee, and more). Next to all of the above, we conducted our research and (digitally) delivered our educational programs. Our bread and butter.

    What’s on our agenda for 2021? With the RICC it is our ambition to build and sustain a regional PSCM practitioner and academic community with an interest in digitalization, sustainability and innovation. BISCI will start up several new projects with public and private organizations to stimulate innovation in logistics and SCM. Further, we will start up new PhD research (e.g. Digital Procurement) and contribute to IPSERA where we can (e.g. host a SIG meeting).

    But, let’s not forget our students! The spotlight is on PSM and students might be attracted by the promising career opportunities. Therefore, we decided to fully redesign our Supply Chain Management Master program in Maastricht, with new courses and content. It will keep us busy in 2020 and beyond!

    Robert Suurmond and Bart Vos (Program leaders) working hard on revamping the SCM M.SC. programs 

    Let’s all meet in Knoxville at the 2021 IPSERA Conference and make 2021 a year to remember as well. In the meanwhile, stay healthy!

    With kind regards, on behalf of Bart, Diogo, Janjaap, Kars, Kris, Lieven, Max, Nadine, Robert, Simon, Tom and Ton,

    Frank Rozemeijer

    RICC Coordinator
    NEVI Professor Purchasing and SCM
    Maastricht University

  • 30 Jun 2020 08:48 | Jenny Backstrand (Administrator)

    For more than 25 years now, Nevi has been supporting scientific education and research in the field of procurement, coordinated by the Nevi Research Committee (NRC). Our joint mission is to raise the procurement profession to the next level for the benefit of society, organisations and individuals. We focus principally on four sectors: the public sector/government, the healthcare sector, industry and the service sector, within which our social themes for the coming period are affordable healthcare, professional commissioning, socially responsible procurement, and future procurement.

    Stimulate research and education
    We approach the development of our procurement profession from a scientific angle, and for this reason we invest in scientific education and research, academic chairs and doctoral research. Since 1956 Nevi has financed a total of 11 professors, of which Arjan van Weele (Eindhoven University of Technology) was the first. Other former professors: Jan Telgen (Twente University), Jacques Reijniers (Nijenrode University), Sicco Santema (TU Delft), Bart Vos (Tilburg University), Dirk Jan Kamann (Groningen University), Finn Wynstra (Rotterdam University) and Jeroen Harink (UvA). Over the past 30 years, this funding has resulted in about 30 PhD students At the moment, we are involved in funding professorships and PhD candidates at four Dutch universities: Wendy van der Valk (Tilburg University), Fredo Schotanus (Universiteit Utrecht), Frank Rozemeijer (Maastricht University) en Erik van Raaij (Rotterdam University). . Fredo Schotanus  and Wendy van der Valk are new in this list. We translate the results of the various studies and the knowledge obtained into applicable theory for procurement professionals and organisations to use in practice.

    When allocating funding for PhD research, NRC is guided by Nevi’s social themes, the four sectors mentioned above, and the Nevi Knowledge Roadmap.

    Knowledge Roadmap
    The Nevi Knowledge Roadmap encompasses four ‘worlds’ based around two axes. The horizontal axis has to do with the future value chain for organisations. Decisions that organisations make in choosing suppliers have a direct impact on matters such as sustainability (Socially Responsible Procurement (MVI)), innovative capacity, risk management, customer friendliness, costs, etc. There is therefore great responsibility and strategic importance involved in organising this well throughout the entire organisation and between organisations (suppliers and chains of suppliers).

    The vertical axis concerns the role of procurement and supply management within an organisation. The way in which procurement and supply management are organised will increasingly be determined in a situation-specific manner and will no longer be the role of the procurement department alone (for example, the social domain).

    By elaborating upon the four worlds: (1) Buying for better business & world, (2) Smart Supply Chains, (3) Value Chain Innovation & Co-creation, and (4) A New Society/ Economy, we provide insights into and inspiration for the future for both research and practice.

    Trends external to procurement
    Which external trends do we need to take into account? The change to “Society 3.0” is already underway and we are all already experiencing it on multiple fronts when it comes to digital and communication revolution, globalisation, innovation, changes in standards and values and the new economy. Tomorrow’s successful organisations embrace the changes and assume that today’s world (truth) is no longer tomorrow’s world (VUCA world). They have their sights fixed on their goals and know how to achieve them with the right expertise, information and people. When translated to procurement, this means that agile procurement and other organisations and supply chains will become increasingly important through collaboration and partnerships.

    Worlds for procurement and supply chain management
    The world of procurement and supply management will therefore need to evolve too. Suppliers play a critical role in this because this flexibility has to be realised together with them through means such as undertaking successful collaborative relationships. In this respect, the capacity of organisations to realise flexible supply chains is an important and strategic success factor for organisations. This is a challenge that we will be tackling in the coming years through scientific research directed towards the practices of organisations and procurement professionals.

    IPSERA community
    Nevi professors are always present at the IPSERA conference and they consider these meetings very valuable, interesting and inspiring. Check the contribution of Dutch research in the list of IPSERA Best paper awards. Not only Nevi professors attend IPSERA, we also attend the IPSERA Conference to gain inspiration for new purchasing themes.


    If you would like to know more about our activities or the Nevi Research Committee, please feel free to contact Erik van Assen, e.vanassen@nevi.nl

  • 30 Jun 2020 08:38 | Jenny Backstrand (Administrator)

    Supply chain risk and resilience has become a significant concern in business and a core area of research in academe. The purpose of the Supply Chain Risk and Resilience Special Interest Group (SIG) is to share knowledge throughout the IPSERA community on identifying, assessing, and managing supply (chain) risk and ensuring supply chain resilience, using operational, financial and supply chain approaches. The SIG was initially formed in November, 2019 by George Zsidisin, Michael Henke, Christine Harland, Federico Caniato, Jukka Hallikas, Veli-Matti Virolainen, Barbara Gaudenzi, and Roberta Pellegrino.

    The COVID-19 pandemic is illustrating many examples of how firms are able to address one of the most significant challenges in supply chain management at a global level. In tandem, a plethora of research ideas and programs are beginning to emerge for better understanding how organizations and supply chains operate and maintain resilience from this historic catastrophe. Several of these projects are being conducted by current members of the Supply Chain Risk and Resilience SIG. Professor Christine Harland is working on the role of public procurement in resilience in crises and also an action agenda for post-COVID-19 supply chain management. Professor George Zsidisin recently moderated a panel session on how Missouri companies are managing risk due to COVID-19 https://youtu.be/1kDRQiWn_aE; https://youtu.be/5dOuP-sEgxQ. Others research programs by members of the Supply Chain Risk and Resilience SIG are just starting to form.

    Although we are saddened we were not able to meet this past April at the IPSERA conference, we do look forward to seeing you in Knoxville in 2021, and will keep the IPSERA community informed of upcoming Supply Chain Risk and Resilience SIG activities. 

  • 22 Jun 2020 12:53 | Jenny Backstrand (Administrator)

    Nominations and applications are invited for the position of Director of the Centre for Building Sustainable Value at the Ivey Business School at The University of Western Ontario. The Director will be appointed as a regular faculty member at the Associate or Full Professor level with tenure. An appointment as Director will normally be for a three-year term, renewable. The ideal candidate will have a PhD in management, business or a related social science discipline, will have published in the highest quality academic outlets and is a recognized expert in sustainability research, widely defined. The preferred candidate is also a team-builder, appreciates interdisciplinary research, has excellent communication skills, can be a change agent, and is a decisive leader. Although not necessary, some administrative experience would also be asset. The position is available to begin on January 1, 2021, although alternate start dates may be arranged.

    Read more on http://www.ivey.uwo.ca/faculty/career-opportunities/

    or on this PDF; Ivey_Sustainability_Director_Faculty Job Ad.pdf

  • 23 May 2020 15:54 | Jenny Backstrand (Administrator)

    Within the next five years there will be billions of things represented by digital twins. These representatives of the physical world will lead to new possibilities for collaboration between experts of the physical world and data scientists. Digital twins are strong thought leaders who drive innovation and performance. Digital Twin technology helps companies improve the customer experience through a better understanding of customer needs, develop improvements to existing products, processes and services and can even help drive innovation in new business models.

    That's why we are focusing on this topic in this year's PhD SUMMER Webinar Weeks.

    The Graduate School of Logistics is offering PhD SUMMER Webinar Weeks from June 15 to 26, 2020. Free webinars and digital lectures by top-class, international scientists are on the agenda. Not only PhD students are addressed, also company representatives, post-docs, students or general interested parties are invited to register for the program or individual elements. The offerings are part of the Digital Transfer Weeks of the Digital Innovation Hub (DIH) Dortmund.

    Participation in the individual webinars is free of charge, but we ask for a binding registration.

    Join us!



  • 27 Apr 2020 15:10 | Jenny Backstrand (Administrator)

    The rapid closure of campuses around the globe has compelled faculty into major redesign of their students’ learning experiences. In this article I (Simon Croom) want to share some reflections and offer some suggestions for faculty on responding to this revolution.

    Our conversations have suddenly been filled with previously arcane terms like Zoom, Blackboard, Canvas, Screencast-O-Matic. Academic life led at arm’s length (or screen length) is the new norm. ‘Teleteaching’ is a way of life, potentially for some months yet, possibly presaging a new world of learning for many years ahead. This is a tectonic shift for the education world, and even faculty with extensive online mediated learning experiences face considerable challenges in transforming students’ experiences, often midway through the academic term or semester.

    But not everything has changed.

    Firstly, it is important to realize that there are fundamental, underlying similarities between the online and in-person curricular design. Both require clear definition of the aims and learning objectives; both are formatted around ‘chunking’ or structuring learning (week by week or module by module, for example);  assignments remain focused on either formative direction or summative assessment; a range of materials are provided (textbooks, videos, PowerPoints, case studies etc.); faculty impart their wisdom through instructional presentations. In both environments, students participate in structured reviews, problems discussions, cases, simulations, presentations, group work, break out activities, field work, reflections and so on.

    What has changed is the role played by technology in sustaining these activities. Regular synchronous Zoom lectures can often be far more interactive than the traditional lecture – we at least have every student’s name in front of us and can poll for regular feedback. Asynchronous lectures, whether video recorded, narrated PowerPoint, TedTalk, YouTube or other open source, enable faculty to flip the classroom, monitor student engagement, and provide clear discussion and group review activities. Field work can be undertaken virtually through selective use of simulations, datasets, movies and so forth. Surveys can be conducted (in fact response rates may increase due to respondents being at home!)

    So, the question is, what are the primary challenges in the online only world? I believe there are two important areas to consider.

    First, it is apparent that motivation and time management for both faculty and students is a major challenge in the online world. Students confined to self-isolate are restless, disorganized and searching for structure to their day, week and semester. Faculty, similarly, face these challenges. The learning environment is thus the single biggest change we all face. In the classroom, we focus on imparting learning within the social order with clearly defined norms for each class. For example, while I am happy for students to use laptops, some colleagues ban them. While I require students to take structured lecture notes, other faculty issue workbooks, and yet others have no such stipulation. I have small size classes (<40), you may have well over 100 in your sections. Classrooms are formal environments, with desks, chairs, screens, podium and are within an academic building. The new online environment is shared by students with their children, partners, roommates, even public area Wi-Fi. This is not a trivial issue. Research has found that lighting, air quality, décor, comfort, temperature are all critical decisions to incorporate in designing buildings for effective learning. When designing your courses, you must be mindful of the student environment.

    So, what can you do? Survey your students. Get a view of their time zone, technology, internet access, personal living situation and their anxieties and concerns. As a result of my class surveys, I limited synchronous class time to short bursts of content delivery (max 10-minute presentation by me), and focused instead on asynchronous use of chat rooms, discussion boards, reflective writing and teamwork. (I have 1/3 of my class in a different time zone now)

    Second, online mediated learning requires a clear student journey map. In this respect I started with the learning objectives for each course. Checked off the ‘content’ topics to be addressed and provided alternative media for each main topic. For example, total cost of ownership was addressed through a preassigned YouTube vide of 6 minutes duration, a single discussion post, a short Zoom (synchronous) presentation and breakout groups for students to discuss questions. I also require students to use their project team as their social network – they used WhatsApp, Slack, Google Hangouts and other social media to check in and share their project work. Finally, I kept the same assessment schedule as my pre-virus syllabus. I do not use exams or tests, so that did not pose a challenge, but if you do, one proposal I would make is to consider either short answer tests allowing students to complete asynchronously or replace exams with a report of written activity. A final note – I have used learning journals with great success and during the pandemic these have been central to the students’ success. I review every 4 weeks and guide the students to develop a rich repository of materials to which they add reflective comments.

    A brave New World may await. This is a good time to reflect on our pedagogy and learning philosophies even while we are grappling with Zoom and Blackboard!

    If you wish to learn more about any of these topics, and to explore some videos and resources related to learning, I have curated a collection at my blog www.simoncroom.com Feel free to email me too! scroom@sandiego.edu

  • 27 Feb 2020 13:30 | Jenny Backstrand (Administrator)

    The IPSERA special interest group on "Purchasing and Innovation" has gathered for the second time after its initiation at the 2018 IPSERA conference in Budapest. This time the group was invited by its member Dr. Florian Schupp, vice president purchasing automotive and aftermarket, to the Schaeffler site in Bühl (Germany) on February 17 and 18. The group gathered for an informal dinner at Burg Windeck on Monday evening and had a 3-hour tour through the production facilities in Bühl where Schaeffler. Afterwards, about 40 of Schaeffler's purchasing and R&D managers joined the presentations of Thomas Johnsen ("An overview of recent research on purchasing involvement in product development & innovation"), Richard Calvi ("Innovation Scouting: A new challenge for Purchasing")

    Nadine Kiratli ("The impact of perceptual differences of governance on team creativity during co-innovation projects")

    Holger Schiele ("Evaluating startups as partners for innovation" )

    Robert Suurmond ("Interface between startups and incumbent suppliers").

    The SIG members enjoyed the constructive, value-adding and inspiring discussions with Schaeffler employees. During the SIG meeting, the upcoming Special Topic Forum (STF) on "Purchasing and Innovation" in the Journal of Purchasing and Supply Management was announced. The guest editor team around Thomas Johnsen is complemented by Marie-Anne Le Dain (Grenoble INP), Nadine Kiratli (Maastricht University) and Holger Schiele (university of Twente).

    The SIG would like to thank Florian and Schaeffler for hosting us and would also like to express its gratitude towards IPSERA for sponsoring the event.

    In case you are interested to join the SIG, please contact Thomas Johnsen or Marie-Anne Le Dain.

  • 27 Jan 2020 11:59 | Jenny Backstrand (Administrator)

    On 21-22 January, some 40 researchers and educators gathered in Lunteren (NL) for the 17th edition of the WION seminar (‘Workshop Inkoop Onderzoek Nederland’). Initiated in 2004, by Arjan van Weele and his colleagues from Eindhoven, this seminar brings together PhD students, teachers, professors – be it fulltime or part-time – in the area of Purchasing and Supply Management, from the Netherlands.

    The program format is quite unique, with some plenary presentations and multiple paper review sessions. The plenary sessions typically feature a practitioner and an academic, but from another discipline.

    This year Jan Roodenburg, former SVP Supplier Development, Philips and VP SC & Ops, HP EMEA, spoke about sustainable supply chains – reminding us that sustainability efforts have been going on for quite some time already, but that is quite challenging to keep this consistently on the agenda of senior management.

    Kees Ahaus, professor of Health Services Management & Organisation at the Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management, presented research on how different institutional logics interact in the organization of care supply chains, such as in the case of COPD patients.

    In the paper review sessions, two reviewers are assigned to each paper, and each session lasts for 60 mins. This duration and the small group setting (in parallel sessions) mean that the discussions can be quite extensive and detailed.

    Finally, each WION edition features workshops and group discussion on techniques and methods, and this year we focused on teaching – more specifically, problem-based learning. Frank Rozemeijer, Nadine Kiratli and Robert Suurmond from Maastricht University led an interactive and productive session exploring techniques for online learning and bring real-life problems into the classroom.

    Finn Wynstra chaired WION for the last six years on behalf of the Rotterdam team, but as of 2021, the team from Maastricht will take over the baton.

  • 17 Jan 2020 11:57 | Jenny Backstrand (Administrator)

    The registration for the IFPSM/IPSERA Summer school is now open!

    This years theme is "Theories for Purchasing and Supply Management Research".

    More information and a link to the registration form is found here: https://www.erim.eur.nl/doctoral-programme/courses/detail/3574/

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