Chapter 16 Applications of Supply Chain Theory

16.1 Introduction

Supply chain management is one of the domains in which the tools of operations research (OR) are most widely and successfully applied. But in the past few decades, the theory of supply chain management has matured to the point where it is now applied to other industries and application areas. That is, while supply chain theory is an application of the methodologies of OR, the methodologies of supply chain theory themselves are applied in many other domains. These include energy, health care, disaster relief, the environment, and nonprofit operations. In this chapter, we discuss some of the ways that the tools of supply chain theory—the tools that we have discussed in this book—have been applied to some of these areas. For additional discussion of how supply chain optimization, in particular, has been applied to energy, health care, and humanitarian relief, see Snyder (2017), Wu and Ouyang (2017), Zhao (2017), and Çelik et al. (2017).

16.2 Electricity Systems

Historically, electricity grids have functioned like the ultimate just‐in‐time supply chains, with no (or very little) inventory and almost instantaneous delivery of goods (i.e., energy). However, the modernization of electricity grids will provide new opportunities for optimizing their design and operation. Tomorrow's grids are likely to look a lot like today's supply chains, with inventories (in the form of large‐scale batteries and other storage ...

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