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An analysis of the main factors affecting bullwhip in reverse supply chains

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  • Adenso-Díaz, Belarmino
  • Moreno, Plácido
  • Gutiérrez, Ester
  • Lozano, Sebastián

Abstract

The bullwhip effect has drawn the attention of supply chains researchers due to the inefficiencies that this phenomenon generates upstream in the supply chain. Various factors that facilitate its appearance have been identified in the literature. However, in spite of current practices and new environmental regulations having increased the importance of returned material chains, this phenomenon has not been studied in detail in the context of closed loop networks. Here we present an analysis of the influence of factors identified as significant with regard to the bullwhip effect in forward chains on the appearance of the bullwhip effect in environments of reverse logistics and its pattern of evolution along the chain. We do so by using a simulator that extends the logic of the Beer Game to this type of environment. The results confirm the influence of the majority of the factors considered, especially the stock and WIP adjustment controllers, as well as the forecasting technique used, the sharing of information among the links, and the final customer demand variability. With respect to specific reverse supply chains factors, the only significant one identified is the percentage of units returned. We have also studied the factors that in this closed loop environment give rise to the classical upstream growing pattern of the bullwhip effect, observing that an increase in the percentage of material returned reduces the likelihood of finding a growing bullwhip pattern. In addition, it is more likely for this pattern to appear when the demand variation is low.

Suggested Citation

  • Adenso-Díaz, Belarmino & Moreno, Plácido & Gutiérrez, Ester & Lozano, Sebastián, 2012. "An analysis of the main factors affecting bullwhip in reverse supply chains," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 135(2), pages 917-928.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:proeco:v:135:y:2012:i:2:p:917-928
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ijpe.2011.11.007
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Sy, Charlle, 2017. "A policy development model for reducing bullwhips in hybrid production-distribution systems," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 190(C), pages 67-79.
    2. Nowak, Thomas & Hofer, Vera, 2014. "On stabilizing volatile product returns," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 234(3), pages 701-708.
    3. Dominguez, Roberto & Cannella, Salvatore & Ponte, Borja & Framinan, Jose M., 2020. "On the dynamics of closed-loop supply chains under remanufacturing lead time variability," Omega, Elsevier, vol. 97(C).
    4. Ponte, Borja & Naim, Mohamed M. & Syntetos, Aris A., 2019. "The value of regulating returns for enhancing the dynamic behaviour of hybrid manufacturing-remanufacturing systems," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 278(2), pages 629-645.
    5. K. Devika & A. Jafarian & A. Hassanzadeh & R. Khodaverdi, 2016. "Optimizing of bullwhip effect and net stock amplification in three-echelon supply chains using evolutionary multi-objective metaheuristics," Annals of Operations Research, Springer, vol. 242(2), pages 457-487, July.
    6. Wang, Xun & Disney, Stephen M., 2016. "The bullwhip effect: Progress, trends and directions," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 250(3), pages 691-701.
    7. Cannella, Salvatore & Bruccoleri, Manfredi & Framinan, Jose M., 2016. "Closed-loop supply chains: What reverse logistics factors influence performance?," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 175(C), pages 35-49.

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