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technologies, companies can now replace costly logistics flows and inventories by
information. How to deploy these technologies and coordinate supply chain-wide
activities constitutes the latest advances in supply chain management.
The objective of the present paper is to study information sharing in the specific
context of global supply chain management. While there exist several works on
information sharing in the general context (e.g., ), no work specifically addresses
information sharing in the supply chain. The present paper reports on some common
types of information sharing in a supply chain. It is only a small step toward answering
the more challenging and frequently asked questions such as What is the minimum set
of information to share with my supply chain partners without risking any potential
The paper is organized as follows. Section 2 describes the types of information
shared and the associated benefits. Section 3 discusses alternative system models to
facilitate information sharing. Section 4 addresses the challenges of information sharing.
2. Types of Shared Information
2. 1. Inventory Level
One of the most common data shared between supply chain partners is inventory
level. As  indicate, inventory and communication are economic substitutes. Access to
supply chain inventory status can contribute to lowering the total inventory level in the
supply chain. To see this, consider two companies in a supply chain in which a retail
chain purchases products from a manufacturer. If the retailer and the manufacturer
independently manage their respective inventories without sharing inventory status
information, they may end up having duplicate safety inventories, or stockouts at both
A solution to this inefficiency is to coordinate the management of inventories at
the two sites. Indeed, it was proven in that echelon-based inventory control is optimal under certain assumptions. The echelon inventory is the combined inventory at
2 the site and at its downstream partner. In ...
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This note was uploaded on 11/06/2013 for the course ISYE 6202 taught by Professor Staff during the Fall '08 term at Georgia Tech.
- Fall '08
- Industrial Engineering