Pandemic Adaptive Supply Chains: A Future-Proof Approach

NCMS President and CEO, Lisa Strama co-authored the following article with partners from the University of Texas at San Antonio, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Stanford Research Institute International, and Purdue University. 

Originally Posted June 11, 2020 at:

COVID-19 vividly underscores the vulnerability of global manufacturing operations and supply chains.  The disruption in our supply chains will hamper manufacturing for months and perhaps years.  As we reopen and rebuild our economy, we must focus on sustainable manufacturing operations that are pandemic adaptive, resilient, and secure.

Strengthening and securing manufacturing must be a top priority for our nation (1).  While the U.S. has lost its leadership position in critical sectors, we have not lost our ability to innovate.  We now face a tremendous opportunity for pervasive strategic overmatch via technology innovation inserted into our manufacturers.  Our supply chains need to be PURE:  Pandemic Adaptive, including operational modes that accommodate pervasive physical (social) distancing and remote work, Usable and accessible to everyone (e.g., soldiers, factory workforce, engineers), Resilient, agile, and able to withstand physical-world challenges such as pandemics, electrical grid failures, and cyber-attacks; and Economical so resiliency and security are maintained at all levels of the supply chain including small and medium-sized manufacturers.

Emphasizing this, on April 16, 2020, G7 leaders agreed to coordinate the reopening of their economies after the coronavirus pandemic and to ensure “trusted supply chains (2).  It is apparent that many nations will consider how to ensure trust in supply chains and how they can achieve self-sufficiency in times of peril.

Read Full Article