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Supply Chain Management in Ethiopia Article Review

Pages:4 (1174 words)



Topic:Supply Chain

Document Type:Article Review


Article Review: Manufacturing Focused Supply Chain Integration


The article by Georgise, Thoben and Seifert (2014) entitled “Supply Chain Integration in the Manufacturing Firms in Developing Country: An Ethiopian Case Study” was published in 2014 in the Journal of Industrial Engineering. It shows how supply chain integration can enhance value creation and what challenges manufacturing firms in developing countries face when attempting to implement supply chain integration. This paper will summarize the article, connect lessons in the article with lessons in class, provide my perspective on the article—i.e., what I learned that was new to me, what was interesting, and whether it changed any of my preconceived ideas.


Georgise et al. (2014) point that in developing countries, the supply chain of manufacturing firms is often fragmented and difficult to integrate. Both inter- and intra-organization is needed to fully integrate the supply chain. Specifically, the authors look at the challenges as they apply to manufacturing firms in Ethiopia. The authors used semistructured interviews to obtain data. Participants worked in both export and import markets. Interviews were spread across nine different manufacturing industries in Ethiopia. The industries included the alcohol industry, the garment industry, wood industry, textile, leather, food, and ceramics industries.

The biggest challenge facing these firms is simply the fact that technology has not advanced in the developing world to assist with supply chain integration. The firms interviewed across the nine different industries were all still using telephone, verbal instructions and letters to relay information. There was no use of digital technology to facilitate and enhance communication. Data collection was all paper based, which means that information processing is extremely slow compared to what is possible in the developed world.

Thus, the biggest challenge is not that supply chain integration is not possible but rather that the tools needed to facilitate it are lacking in the developing world. The developed world may take it for granted that communication technology and information systems have advanced to the point where it is no longer necessary for individuals to think twice about sending messages and obtaining data in seconds. That is because today’s managers in the…

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…completely lost if they did not have Big Data analytics.

How It Changed My Ideas

The article changed my ideas about supply chain integration in manufacturing by showing me that technology plays a very important role in the process, which was not something I really quite grasped fully before. I understood that digital communications and record keeping can facilitate supply chain management, but I did not ever stop to imagine what a manufacturing firm would be like without any of these tools—it would be like stepping back in time. Thus, this article really helped me to appreciate the tools that are available in the developed world and how they can be used to facilitate the supply chain integration process.


The article by Georgise et al. (2014) focused on the issue of supply chain integration in manufacturing firms in nine different industries in the developed world (specifically Ethiopia) and showed what the main challenges are in terms of integrating the supply chain. The article revealed that the main challenge is simply a lack of helpful technology such as…

Sample Source(s) Used


Afshan, N. (2013, December). The performance outcomes of dimensions of supply chain integration: A conceptual framework. Business: Theory and Practice, 14(4), 323.

Georgise, F. B., Thoben, K. D., & Seifert, M. (2014). Supply chain integration in the manufacturing firms in developing country: An Ethiopian case study. Journal of Industrial Engineering, 2014.

Prensky, M. (2001). Digital natives, digital immigrants part 1. On the horizon, 9(5), 1-6.

Spiess, J., T'Joens, Y., Dragnea, R., Spencer, P., & Philippart, L. (2014). Using big data to improve customer experience and business performance. Bell labs technical journal, 18(4), 3-17.

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