Supply Chain Management: An Opportunity for Metaheuristics

UPF Economics and Business Working Paper No. 538

25 Pages Posted: 29 Jun 2001


In the last two decades, logistics and supply chain has moved to the center stage due the growing recognition that it is through an effective management of the logistics function that the goal of cost reduction and service enhancement can be achieved. The key to success in Supply Chain Management (SCM) require heavy emphasis on integration of activities, cooperation, coordination and information sharing throughout the entire supply chain, from suppliers to customers. To be able to respond to the challenge of integration there is the need of sophisticated decision support systems based on powerful mathematical models and solution techniques. We present a brief discussion on the important issues in SCM. We then argue that metaheuristics can play an important role in solving complex supply chain related problems derived by the importance of designing and managing the entire supply chain as a single entity. We will present briefly some successful applications.

Keywords: Supply chain management, metaheuristics, iterated local search, tabu search and scatter search.

JEL Classification: C63, M29

Suggested Citation

Ramalhinho Dias Lourenço, Helena, Supply Chain Management: An Opportunity for Metaheuristics. UPF Economics and Business Working Paper No. 538, Available at SSRN: or

Helena Ramalhinho Dias Lourenço (Contact Author)

Universitat Pompeu ( email )

Ramon Trias Fargas 25-27
Barcelona, 08005
+34 93 542 27 53 (Phone)
+34 93 542 17 46 (Fax)

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