Supply Chain Digitalization

A special issue of Journal of Theoretical and Applied Electronic Commerce Research (ISSN 0718-1876). This special issue belongs to the section "Entrepreneurship, Innovation, FinTech Accounting and Industry 4.0".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 July 2022) | Viewed by 28906

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Department of Supply Chain and Information Management, The Hang Seng University of Hong Kong, Hang Shin Link, Siu Lek Yuen, Shatin, N.T., Hong Kong
Interests: sustainable supply chain management; green transportation; neural network applications in business

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Guest Editor
Department of Logistics and Maritime Studies, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong, China
Interests: ports and terminals; commercial shipping; transport risk; low carbon logistics; transport research; transport policy studies; spatial analysis
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Special Issue Information

The COVID-19 pandemic, the rise of trade conflicts, and unstable geopolitics have jointly created major disruptions to the national, regional and world economies, driving the decoupling and restructuring of global supply chains. Yet, the advancement of digital technologies has presented unprecedented opportunities for businesses to improve internal operations and integrate inter-organizational processes, seemingly with geographically dispersed partners. It is more critical than ever before to understand how digital technologies enable better management of global supply chains in a turbulent and complex business environment.

To better satisfy customers and achieve sustainable development through a digital supply chain, the collaboration of multiple parties and the application of relevant digital technologies that integrate online and offline processes across organizational and geographic boundaries is required. Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) algorithms, automation technologies, and connected devices are some of the emerging digital technologies that offer tremendous benefits in sourcing, production, warehousing, transportation, retailing and recycling. For example, in the retail industry, blockchain technology can meet the growing need for higher product and supply transparency that enables end-to-end traceability and communicates safety and quality. Demand forecasting can be improved by big data analytics in which advanced ML algorithms with self-learning ability are developed to recognize demand patterns, learn from a dearth of historical and unseen data, and become smarter in demand prediction over time. AI improves risk management for the supply chain by applying ML models to assess supplier risks, detect and monitor potential risks, and provide alerts and predict supply chain risks. Warehouse operations like order allocation, inventory control management, order picking, and material handling can be optimized by extended reality (XR) tools like smart glasses to fulfill high demand e-commerce orders in increasingly shorter timeframes. Industrial robots increasingly take up labor-intensive and dangerous tasks in material handling, processing operations, and assembly and inspection in various sectors. AI-based visual inspection for defect detection significantly enhances the accuracy and effectiveness of process quality control than the conventional human visual method. The trend of increasing the connection of vehicles and assets to the cloud gives birth of the Internet of Things (IoT) ecosystem surrounding shipping, logistics and transportation. Powered by 5G mobile network technologies and big data analytics, the interconnected transport ecosystem enables real-time location tracking, route optimization, and assisted and autonomous driving, saving costs and reducing emissions. Robotic process automation (RPA) software partially or fully automates business processes that involve manual, rule-based, and repetitive human activities, freeing workers up to perform higher value work.

The interconnection of digital objects and electronic devices, process automation, information transparency, governance and security, the reduction of human intervention, and decentralized decisions are increasing their importance and transforming how all parts of a supply chain function in its context. There is a pressing need for countries and companies, especially those with weak infrastructure and inadequate competencies, to embrace digital transformation to survive “the new normal” that characterizes a highly volatile and complex environment. This Special Issue on “Supply Chain Digitalization” aims to gather a collection of articles that showcase how different approaches of digital transformation have been applied in various stages of global supply chains spanning multiple sectors and countries to achieve sustainable development.

Topics:

  • Digital transformations
  • Cloud-based services
  • Internet of Things
  • Artificial intelligence
  • Extended reality technologies
  • Digital talents
  • Digital methods
  • Digital leadership
  • Digital innovation
  • Digital footprint
Dr. Danny C.K. Ho
Dr. Tsz Leung Yip
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Journal of Theoretical and Applied Electronic Commerce Research is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • supply chain management
  • digital transformation
  • digitalization
  • virtualization
  • emerging technologies

Published Papers (8 papers)

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Research

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19 pages, 646 KiB  
Article
An Exploratory Study of the Critical Success Factors of the Global Shipping Industry in the Digital Era
by Surinder Brrar, Eunha Lee and Tsz Leung Yip
J. Theor. Appl. Electron. Commer. Res. 2023, 18(2), 795-813; https://doi.org/10.3390/jtaer18020041 - 31 Mar 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2685
Abstract
The global shipping industry faces many uncertainties which impact on how organisations within this sector will perform in the future. Research in the critical success factors which impact the global shipping industry in the digital era is lacking. This study plugs the gap [...] Read more.
The global shipping industry faces many uncertainties which impact on how organisations within this sector will perform in the future. Research in the critical success factors which impact the global shipping industry in the digital era is lacking. This study plugs the gap in the literature by identifying four key critical success factors which are innovation capability, risk governance capability, leadership and strategic capability, and technological capability. In addition, this study also found three organisational performance measures that are useful for senior management teams within the industry, namely, financial performance, operational performance and marketing performance. The results were then triangulated and validated by the case study method using a global shipping organisation. The findings establish a set of critical success factors and the corresponding relationships between the identified critical success factors and the identified organisational performance measures. The paper also provides managerial insights for industry practitioners for defining, prioritising and allocating resources in order to improve organisational performance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Supply Chain Digitalization)
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30 pages, 1956 KiB  
Article
The Long-Term Risk Familiarity Effect on Courier Services’ Digital Branding during the COVID-19 Crisis
by Damianos P. Sakas, Ioannis Dimitrios G. Kamperos and Marina C. Terzi
J. Theor. Appl. Electron. Commer. Res. 2022, 17(4), 1655-1684; https://doi.org/10.3390/jtaer17040084 - 01 Dec 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 3018
Abstract
The explosion of e-commerce creates new opportunities for courier companies to thrive, making the industry one of the success stories, due to its sustainability and resilience during the pandemic. As customers become more familiar with COVID-19, they adopt new online purchasing behaviors toward [...] Read more.
The explosion of e-commerce creates new opportunities for courier companies to thrive, making the industry one of the success stories, due to its sustainability and resilience during the pandemic. As customers become more familiar with COVID-19, they adopt new online purchasing behaviors toward branding preferences. The purpose of this paper is to analyze the impact of risk familiarization on courier companies’ digital branding. This paper investigates the application of the psychometric paradigm by Fischhoff ho suggested risk novelty as a key factor for the level of risk perception. Five big companies with global trading activities were selected and analyzed on a three-period time: the year before, the first year, and the second year of the COVID-19 pandemic, by using passive crowdsourcing data. The results indicate that after the first year of the pandemic, online customers’ risk perception of COVID-19 hazards decreased, and consumers returned to their pre-COVID-19 behavior regarding brand preference. However, the dramatic escalation of new infections caused by new COVID-19 mutations reversed their online purchasing attitude from non-branded to branded preferences. The outcomes of the research can be used by scientists and supply chain risk managers to redefine risk mitigation strategies, COVID-related information marketing strategies and innovation investments within the industry. The research further introduces dynamic simulation modeling to be used as a risk management tool in favor of courier companies’ proper resource allocation and digital optimization. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Supply Chain Digitalization)
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25 pages, 1990 KiB  
Article
Measuring Using Disruptive Technology in the Supply Chain Context: Scale Development and Validation
by Özden Özkanlısoy and Füsun Bulutlar
J. Theor. Appl. Electron. Commer. Res. 2022, 17(4), 1336-1360; https://doi.org/10.3390/jtaer17040068 - 19 Oct 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2709
Abstract
The concept of disruptive technology has been in our lives for many years, and it is essential to measure their utilization levels to survive in the global competitive environment, to benefit from their contributions to supply chains, to examine their relations with supply [...] Read more.
The concept of disruptive technology has been in our lives for many years, and it is essential to measure their utilization levels to survive in the global competitive environment, to benefit from their contributions to supply chains, to examine their relations with supply chain operations and to compare them with average state of the industry. The aim of this study is to develop and validate a measurement instrument for supply chain management practices in the disruptive technology field. Accordingly, the study was carried out in five steps and the sample size consists of 47 companies as pilot data and 426 companies for the main data. These steps consist of item generation and purification, pilot test, initial identification of dimensionality, dimensionality confirmation and convergent validity assessment. As a result of the study, a new scale with a single factor structure was developed. The study ends with the evaluation of the findings. Correcting the lack of a measurement tool developed in this field in the literature is the theoretical contribution of the study. Furthermore, this study enables supply chain leaders to compare their utilization level of disruptive technology with the industries in which they operate, to associate it with operations and to enhance technology investments in practice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Supply Chain Digitalization)
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19 pages, 2133 KiB  
Article
Schema Incongruity: A Framework for Distributing Service Forms of FMCG Brands via a Digital Channel
by Mathew Parackal, Damien Mather and Rory Redman
J. Theor. Appl. Electron. Commer. Res. 2022, 17(3), 1124-1142; https://doi.org/10.3390/jtaer17030057 - 09 Aug 2022
Viewed by 2266
Abstract
This paper reports an extension of schema incongruity theory to a service form of fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) distributed via a digital platform. According to this theory, an FMCG brand’s service form would be incongruent compared to its traditional form available via supermarkets. [...] Read more.
This paper reports an extension of schema incongruity theory to a service form of fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) distributed via a digital platform. According to this theory, an FMCG brand’s service form would be incongruent compared to its traditional form available via supermarkets. Based on the relevancy and expectancy dimensions, the level of incongruence for such a service was classed as moderately incongruent. The study used qualitative research to investigate whether the moderate incongruence appealed to modern-day customers. The findings revealed that a subscription to receive a regular supply of the FMCG test brand appealed to the respondents. The moderate incongruity employed in this study was of an optimal stimulation level, enabling respondents to see the added values offered. The values recognised included convenience, family bonding, health and variety. The study observed schema incongruity theory operating for the service form of the FMCG brand. As the study used a qualitative methodology, the findings are specific to the brand and context tested. However, the high interest observed suggests schema incongruity theory could serve as a framework for using a digital distribution system to market service forms of FMCG brands. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Supply Chain Digitalization)
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22 pages, 1962 KiB  
Article
Decisions and Coordination of Green Supply Chain Considering Big Data Targeted Advertising
by Haiju Hu, Yakun Li and Mengdi Li
J. Theor. Appl. Electron. Commer. Res. 2022, 17(3), 1035-1056; https://doi.org/10.3390/jtaer17030053 - 22 Jul 2022
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2678
Abstract
The application of big data targeted advertising in the green supply chain makes the green marketing of products more accurate and effective. This paper applies game theory to study the decisions and coordination issues of a green supply chain in which the online [...] Read more.
The application of big data targeted advertising in the green supply chain makes the green marketing of products more accurate and effective. This paper applies game theory to study the decisions and coordination issues of a green supply chain in which the online retailer conducts big data targeted advertising. A centralized model and two Stackelberg game models (an online-retailer-led decentralized model and a manufacturer-led decentralized model) were constructed and solved. The zero wholesale price-side-payment contract and greedy wholesale price-side-payment contract were introduced into the green supply chain for coordination. The study found that: (1) the increase in demand attenuation coefficient, green sensitivity coefficient, and big data targeted advertising sensitivity coefficient will be beneficial to the growth of total consumer demand, supply chain profit, and environmental benefit; (2) supply chain coordination is necessary because greenness, demand, supply chain profit, and environmental benefit under the centralized model are higher than those under two decentralized models; (3) two contracts can achieve the coordination of the green supply chain, and the profits of the manufacturer and online retailer under the contract are greater than those under the decentralized model. The results can provide insights for promoting green supply chain operations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Supply Chain Digitalization)
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20 pages, 1362 KiB  
Article
Composite Contracts for Dual-Channel Supply Chain Coordination with the Existence of Service Free Riding
by Can Liu, Bin Dan, Xumei Zhang and Haiyue Zhang
J. Theor. Appl. Electron. Commer. Res. 2022, 17(2), 789-808; https://doi.org/10.3390/jtaer17020041 - 06 Jun 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2103
Abstract
This paper aims to investigate how to coordinate a dual-channel supply chain composing of a manufacturer and a retailer when customers utilize the retailer’s service to conduct free-riding behavior. Specially, we consider the crucial role of service in affecting customers’ valuation for a [...] Read more.
This paper aims to investigate how to coordinate a dual-channel supply chain composing of a manufacturer and a retailer when customers utilize the retailer’s service to conduct free-riding behavior. Specially, we consider the crucial role of service in affecting customers’ valuation for a kind of experience product and establish a channel choice model by employing utility theory. Then, we analyze the optimal pricing and service decisions under decentralized and centralized scenarios. To achieve overall optimization, we propose three contract mechanisms, namely price hike (Mechanism 1), price hike with service cost sharing (Mechanism 2) and price hike with service cost sharing and surplus compensation (Mechanism 3). We reveal the way of price difference and service provision in affecting customer free-riding behavior. Besides, we find that the three mechanisms can reduce free-riding behavior to some extent. However, the extent varies under different mechanisms and is related to the cost-sharing fraction and the degree by which the manufacturer increases his online price. Further, we find that Mechanism 3 can realize overall optimization and members’ win–win situations. Finally, we conduct numerical examples to explore how different mechanisms affect supply chain efficiency. The results also provide managerial insights for dual-channel firms in practice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Supply Chain Digitalization)
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22 pages, 3402 KiB  
Article
Preventing Return Fraud in Reverse Logistics—A Case Study of ESPRES Solution by Ethereum
by Dong-Her Shih, Feng-Chuan Huang, Chia-Yi Chieh, Ming-Hung Shih and Ting-Wei Wu
J. Theor. Appl. Electron. Commer. Res. 2021, 16(6), 2170-2191; https://doi.org/10.3390/jtaer16060121 - 01 Sep 2021
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 5823
Abstract
With the rapid development of e-commerce services, online retail has evolved from multi-channel to omni-channel in order to provide customers with more services. However, reverse logistics services (returns and exchanges) have become the target of many fraudulent activities, causing a lot of economic [...] Read more.
With the rapid development of e-commerce services, online retail has evolved from multi-channel to omni-channel in order to provide customers with more services. However, reverse logistics services (returns and exchanges) have become the target of many fraudulent activities, causing a lot of economic losses for many online retail companies. The current challenge of the traditional countermeasure is it requires a lot of manpower and training resources. In this study, we propose ESPRES, a system that adopts blockchain technology to prevent fraudulent behavior in the process of returns and exchanges with the smart contract and multi-attribute decision-support method to help consumers choose a suitable payment program. A practical implication of this study is that by adopting blockchain technology, a great amount of manpower used on determining whether each return or exchange is fraudulent can be reduced since merchants can check the product ownership. In addition, due to the fact that the footprint of goods cannot be forged, it can also prevent counterfeit or parallel imports of goods. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Supply Chain Digitalization)
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Review

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19 pages, 1690 KiB  
Review
Order-Picking Efficiency in E-Commerce Warehouses: A Literature Review
by Yi Li, Ruining Zhang and Dandan Jiang
J. Theor. Appl. Electron. Commer. Res. 2022, 17(4), 1812-1830; https://doi.org/10.3390/jtaer17040091 - 07 Dec 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 4817
Abstract
With the vigorous development of e-commerce, efficient order picking in e-commerce warehouses has attracted the attention of many scholars. To analyze the issues about order-picking efficiency currently being studied by relevant scholars in e-commerce warehouses, this paper reviews the literature on the application [...] Read more.
With the vigorous development of e-commerce, efficient order picking in e-commerce warehouses has attracted the attention of many scholars. To analyze the issues about order-picking efficiency currently being studied by relevant scholars in e-commerce warehouses, this paper reviews the literature on the application of order-picking strategy and efficiency optimization direction from 2020 to 2022. That mainly falls into two categories of picking systems: “picker-to-parts” and “parts-to-picker”. In the “picker-to-parts” picking system, more attention is paid to the picking strategies of storage assignment and order batching and the integration of multiple picking strategies. In contrast, in the “parts-to-picker” picking system, the main attention is on the man-machine cooperation in the Mobile Robot Fulfillment System (RMFS) and the Automated Storage and Retrieval System (AS/RS), as well as the coordination of the picking station. Further, this paper proposes future research directions for two categories of picking systems: further studying the order splitting strategy and order delivery issues; considering the dynamic uncertainties; combining the automated picking system with different picking strategies, and so on. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Supply Chain Digitalization)
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