Formalization of the flow of component-related information in precast concrete supply chains

Ergen E., Akinci B.

JOURNAL OF CONSTRUCTION ENGINEERING AND MANAGEMENT-ASCE, vol.134, no.2, pp.112-121, 2008 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier


Information flow in precast concrete supply chains should be streamlined to simplify complexities in tracking highly customized components and related information. Currently, information created, exchanged, accessed, updated, and stored in a precast supply chain is not formalized. Consequently, even though various advanced technologies are available to streamline information flow, there is no formal way to identify the requirements and appropriate mechanisms for utilizing these technologies. This paper describes some major patterns in information flow related to precast components through postdesign phases in precast supply chains, based on observations made in the United States. It specifically proposes several propositions that characterize the information flow and tests those propositions in descriptive case studies. It also depicts an information flow framework for formalizing information flow patterns in supply chains. The results include a list of information groups and major patterns of information flow observed in precast supply chains. It is expected that these results will enable researchers to develop formalisms and automated approaches to streamline information flow and help practitioners identify information flow patterns in their companies and corresponding supply chains to develop approaches and technologies to streamline the flow accordingly.