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WMG appoints new Professor of Supply Chain Management

Image of Professor Alok ChoudharyWMG, at the University of Warwick, has appointed Dr Alok Choudhary as its new Professor of Supply Chain Management and Head of Supply Chain Group.

Dr Choudhary, who joined WMG earlier this month, brings a wealth of knowledge after more than a decade of working in supply chain management and logistics at Sheffield University Management School, and more recently as a Professor of Supply Chain Management at Loughborough University’s School of Business and Economics.

Alok comments: “I am excited to contribute to the success of a world-leading institution that is a powerhouse for creating research-led impact and developing innovative solutions for many industrial and societal challenges.

“More than ever before, innovation and transformation are needed to tackle some of the pressing global supply chain challenges we face today including sustainability, Net Zero, risk and digital transformation.


“I’m looking forward to leading WMG’s Supply Chain Group and collaborating with our industry partners and colleagues from across the University, to make a step-change in addressing these challenges.”

Alok served as a panel member of REF2021 Subpanel "Business and Management" as one of the only two operations and supply chain management experts. Most recently, Professor Choudhary worked with Midlands Engine and Energy Research Accelerator to develop the UK Midlands pan-regional green growth plan.

He has led and contributed to several projects funded by EPSRC, ESRC, European Union, RED and the British council with specific focus areas including Sustainability (including ESG issues, Decarbonisation and Circular Economy), Resilience and Digital Transformation in the supply chain. Dr Choudhary has served as a Guest Editor at many journals, as well as authoring and co-authoring over 100 research publications including over 55 for international journals.

He was a Visiting Faculty at the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), Ivey School of Business; Vienna University of Economics and Business, and a Visiting Researcher at Harvard Business School. He has also served as a scientific committee member, session chair and keynote speaker at several international conferences and delivered guest lectures at many universities across the world.

Find out more about WMG’s Supply Chain Group here.

Wed 04 May 2022, 09:24 | Tags: Supply Chains Education Research Our People

Reusable and customised facemask to keep healthcare workers safe thanks to digital supply-chain

Image of the MyMaskFit reusable and customised facemask   Throughout the pandemic the filtering facepiece 3 respirator (FFP3) mask was heavily in demand, as it is the most widely used respiratory protective equipment in UK healthcare system. However, according to a study with health workers from 32 hospitals, the overall fit-testing pass rates had a mean pass rate of 81%. 

MyMaskFit with their NHS Nurse co-Founder saw this statistic in reality in setting up the COVID-19 Wards, and with inspiration from the Ventilator Challenge UK they have created a reusable, customised facemask to protect medical workers during and after the pandemic.  

The mask is unique as it has:  

§ Fully customised fit according to individual’s face. This will ensure a high fit-testing pass rate and better protection.Image of the MyMaskFit reusable and customised facemask

§ Different from the traditional one fits all masks, customised mask will also provide the most comfortable wearing experience that enable clinical workers wearing them for long time. 

§ Local 3D printing supply chain to ensure a fast and flexible reaction to the demand with short lead time.

 

However, to ensure MyMaskFit could be rolled out and mass produced it was important to secure a sustainable supply chain. This is where the WMG Supply Chain Research Group stepped in and helped MyMaskFit to create a digital solution, taking advantage of emerging distributed manufacturing. 

Distributed manufacturing consists of using global and remote expertise, producing parts locally and diversifying supplier network productions, researchers from WMG decided to use distributed manufacturing to create a digital supply-chain marketplace, which is attractive to buyers and suppliers, as it uses the insight gained from other marketplace examples to address known barriers and issues. This means that companies can transform customer feedback into designs and products that can be achieved within days through such a dynamic and distributed supply chain. 

The WMG Accelerator Team also helped, by leveraging their existing knowledge learned from UK Collaborative Commerce Marketplace (UKCCM). UKCCM is a digital marketplace created by WMG Accelerator Team, which aims to increase sales and lower costs through providing easy access to the core competences and capabilities of small and medium-sized enterprises. 

MyMaskFits was then able to meet the classification of cloud-additive manufacturing with a touch of the platform's support (marketplace) to amplify the on-demand supply chain to a larger scale. 

Carl Che from the WMG SCRG at the University of Warwick comments: “We are glad that our distributed manufacturing archetype and marketplace archetype helped MyMaskFit to form their business model from academic side. It feels great knowing a better mask can potentially help more NHS workers or even save more lives.  

“From a macro perspective, two separated models (distributed manufacturing and B2B marketplace) perfectly help each other out. This project can potentially sketch out an emerging pattern of the future manufacturing in the UK.” 

Paul Perera from MyMaskFits comments: “Our mask is unique as it is reusable and customisable, however in order for it to be mass produced and manufactured easily we needed a sustainable supply-chain in place.  

“WMG at the University of Warwick have helped us meet our customer’s needs and expectations by helping us secure a sustainable and digital supply-chain, this means we can easily check our suppliers availability and prices and provide MyMaskFit quickly and at a competitive price.”  

ENDS 

NOTES TO EDITORS  

High-res images available at:  

https://warwick.ac.uk/services/communications/medialibrary/images/november_2021/mask_on_face.jpg 
Caption: The MyMaskFit reusable and customised facemask  
Credit: MyMaskFit Photographer: Ed Felton  

https://warwick.ac.uk/services/communications/medialibrary/images/november_2021/mask_1.jpg 
Caption: The MyMaskFit reusable and customised facemask  
Credit: MyMaskFit Photographer: Ed Felton 

https://warwick.ac.uk/services/communications/medialibrary/images/november_2021/mask_4.png 
Caption: The MyMaskFit reusable and customised facemask  
Credit: MyMaskFit Photographer: Ed Felton 

5 April 2022

Tue 05 Apr 2022, 12:02 | Tags: SME Supply Chains HVM Catapult Research

The University of Warwick supports RIFT Technology with a greener cost-effective electric motor

A cheaper and more environmentally friendly electric motor for electric vehicles is a step closer to market with the support of WMG at the University of Warwick.

WMG has provided valuable knowledge and expertise in developing a UK focused, cost-effective production and supply chain for RIFT (Reduced Image of RIFT-10KW MotorInduction Field Torque) Technology’s development of RIFT-10; a design for electric motor drives that reduces copper and magnet weight reduction by around 50% and lower cost by 75%.

The aim of the project was to help RIFT Technology; an R&D company bringing a product to market for the first time, advance RIFT-10 to a higher manufacturing readiness level (MRL 7), to get the motor closer to production, by rooting the supply chain in the UK, rather than abroad (given the disruption to supply caused by the pandemic) and supporting production of trial units.

WMG, is committed to delivering UK economic impact and achieving net-zero by supporting industry in accelerating new concepts to commercial reality. This supports the University of Warwick’s approach to sustainability - the Way to Sustainable – which focuses on the real-life implications of creating a sustainable future and the practical challenges of getting there - prioritising research expertise, sustainability in the curriculum, and developing solutions for the benefit of industry and society.

The team of experts at the University has facilitated the RIFT-10 project to deliver on creating revenue, jobs, CO2 reduction, and supply chain growth in the UK.

RIFT Technology has developed the RIFT 10-30 kW motor (RIFT-10) by taking an exciting innovation from their sister business (RIFT Actuators) and working with APC and the Niche Vehicle Network to get the motor to working prototype stage (installed on a G-Whiz). The novel electric motor configuration is proven to generate 10-30kW of power, torque from 0-400Nm and up to 10,000RPM as demonstrated with a prototype vehicle.

The RIFT 10 motor demonstrated unique advantages over conventional EV motors:

Environmental benefits of the project:

· The low sales cost and attractive features of RIFT-10 enable greater/earlier market adoption of EUV’s, resulting in a reduction of CO2 production over ICE vehicles.

· A RIFT-10 weight saving and efficiency over competing EV motor designs increase vehicle range, resulting in less energy usage over alternatives.

· With RIFT-10, equivalent power output is achieved using fewer raw materials (i.e., 85% reduced copper weight and ~85% reduced magnet volume), resulting in less earth material usage as well as fewer material costs.

· Less materials usage results in an estimated 75% reduction in CO2 produced during manufacture. Planned production efficiencies also lead to further CO2 reductions. An estimated 612,000 Tonnes of CO2 would be saved by year 5.

· Development of an EV motors supply chain in the UK for a UK and EU market reduces international shipping of components thus reduces related CO2 production.

Social benefits of the project:

· RIFT-10 creates/safe-guards 50+ much needed and good-quality manufacturing, sales, administration and R&D jobs in the Malvern area with an estimated X14 more UK jobs across the supply chain (over 5-years).

· Growth of RIFT-10 addresses the government’s priority area of ‘Smart Cities’ by allowing smart monitoring of vehicle fleets efficiency performance, usage and other data points. The use of the Internet of Things and resulting analysis can only be as strong as the data input. Traditional alternatives offer no smart functionality.

James Black, WMG Innovation Manager at the University of Warwick said, “The Covid-19 pandemic has been particularly difficult for SMEs and R&D-focused organisations that have previously relied on face-to-face networking events to find new partners, investors, and customers.

“WMG’s network means we’re in a great position to connect UK companies together to help them accelerate their product to the market, and we’re delighted that RIFT Technology has benefited from our extensive background for practical supply chain solutions that have delivered economic and societal value to the project.”

James O’Donnell, Technical Manager from RIFT Technology said, “As a research and development company bringing a product to market for the first time, RIFT Technology needed to bridge the gap between prototype and small-scale production. We had to answer difficult questions such as what to make and what to buy, high level questions such as how to develop a supply chain strategy and practical questions such as how best to select suppliers.

“With a unique blend of academic expertise and industrial experience from the University of Warwick, WMG’s Supply Chain and Operations Group were able to support us in our journey.”

The project took place during the pandemic, meaning several online workshops were carried out targeting topics such as strategic management, supplier selection and decision-making, and end-of-life strategies.

For further stories, click here.

ENDS

4 April 2022


WMG professor to lead research and network strand for £147 million Made Smarter Innovation programme

Head and shoulders shot of Jan Godsell, Professor of Operations and Supply Chain Strategy at WMG, University of Warwick.

Recognised for her expertise in supply chain design and strategy, as well as process improvement and sustainability, Jan Godsell, Professor of Operations and Supply Chain Strategy at WMG, University of Warwick, has been appointed as a co-director of the research and network strand within the £147 million Made Smarter Innovation programme.

Taking on the UK Research and Innovation role with immediate effect, Professor Godsell will be working with the Economic and Social Research Council to lead the research and network strand of the programme alongside fellow newly appointed co-director Jillian MacBryde, Professor of Innovation and Operations Management at the University of Strathclyde.

Together they will look to expand the stakeholder community and research into a Made Smarter Network Plus on an initial five-month agreement working alongside the Challenge Director and programme team.

The Made Smarter Network Plus aims to bring together insights across the wider UK manufacturing sector, bolstering digital technology innovation opportunities in manufacturing through engagement and collaboration.

Commenting on her new role, Professor Godsell said:

“The scope for improving the flexibility, sustainability and productivity of the UK manufacturing sector is huge, so I was keen to take this role to partner with Jillian on introducing research and new ideas to the industry.

“Introducing these important external influences in an effective way will require a deep understanding of the specific needs and demands on the manufacturing sector, which I hope I can bring to the Network Plus model to ensure it thrives for the benefit of all involved.”

Professor Godsell provides advice on strategy and activity across government and industry as part of her existing roles on various supply chain groups, including the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Supply Chain Resilience Advisory Group.

Chris Courtney, Challenge Director for Made Smarter Innovation, said:

“Digital technologies have the power to radically transform how we manufacture and deliver the products and services of the future and deliver a more resilient, prosperous economy with fundamental changes to the nature of work.

“A key part of delivering an optimal future in manufacturing will be enabled by harnessing the insights from the broader economic, social, regulatory and political sciences.

“I’m delighted to welcome Jan and Jill to the overall effort as co-directors, combining two of our leading academics in this space bringing leadership, insight of with a passion for manufacturing.

“I’m excited to get this work underway and to support Jill and Jan as they reach out to the broad network of capability to engage and shape a vital and exciting programme of work.”

Register for the upcoming Made Smarter Network Plus Townhall Event on 13th May here to find out more about the programme and how to get involved.

Mon 10 May 2021, 12:45 | Tags: Supply Chains Jan Godsell Manufacturing Sustainability

WMG Professor named as one of the ‘Top 100 Women in Supply Chain’

Picture: Professor Jan GodsellWMG Professor of Operations and Supply Chain Strategy, Jan Godsell, has been ranked 54th in the ‘Top 100 Women in Supply Chain’ report.

The list collated by Supply Chain Digital, in association with IBM, recognises exceptional female figures who are driving global innovation across the world.

Professor Godsell comments: “This last year, and the challenges of COVID, has highlighted the importance of supply chains. They are critical to life and the economy, but have often been overlooked. It is great to recognise the achievements of 100 women, leading the way in the use of digital technology in supply chains.”

Professor Godsell, who joined WMG in 2013, is highly influential within the engineering and manufacturing sectors. She is a Chartered Engineer and Member of the IMechE. She has advised government and industry on supply chain strategy, and its relationship to industrial and business strategy, and is currently a member of the Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) supply chain resilience advisory group. She is also a member of the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) advisory groups for Manufacturing Made Smarter and Driving the Electric Revolution.

In addition, earlier this week Professor Godsell also began a new role as Co-Director of the Manufacturing Made Smarter Network+.

Read more about Professor Godsell’s career here: Jan Godsell (warwick.ac.uk)

You can see the official Top 100 Women in Supply Chain report here: https://issuu.com/supplychaindigital/docs/supplychain-top100-women-suppliment-2021-final/12

Thu 11 Mar 2021, 10:30 | Tags: Supply Chains Research Our People

Digital supply chain visibility needed to rebuild after COVID-19

Manufacturers must unlock supply chain visibility to rebuild after the COVID-19 pandemic, WMG and Blue Yonder are warning.

The pandemic has disrupted supply and demand in many ways, from factory and border closures to swings in consumer needs, and those without supply chain visibility have been struggling to adapt and keep up. Digital supply chain technologies perform a vital role across all stages of manufacturing, from sourcing materials and quality control to warehouses and shipping. Now the industry is being warned any talk of ‘building back stronger’ won’t come to fruition if manufacturers don’t have the visibility over demand and supply that digital supply chains can bring.

The warning comes as a result of WMG research conducted in with almost 250 manufacturing companies revealing that lack of visibility and workforce issues are creating the biggest supply chain bottlenecks:

  • 47% cited lack of visibility of capacity at suppliers and 37% cited lack of visibility of demand from customers as major supply chain constraints.
  • More than half (55%) used inventory as the major buffer against disruption. This ties up cash and can leave organisations exposed if demand falls.
  • Less than a third (32%) used visibility in their supply network to react to disruption. This is potentially a more effective strategy in the longer term.

To help manufacturers assess their supply chain needs, WMG at the University of Warwick and Blue Yonder worked together to design a freely accessible digital readiness tool. The digital readiness tool gives manufacturers the ability to assess their current supply chain to see where they are now and where they need to be. Manufacturers can also enquire about a further consultation to understand what they need to do to get to their goal and survive in the post COVID-19 world.Professor Jan Godsell, WMG, University of Warwick

Professor Jan Godsell, from WMG, University of Warwick, comments: “As we continue to deal with the disruptions of COVID-19, demand and supply visibility has never been more critical. It enables manufacturers to better plan their manufacturing operations, to minimise costly inventory buffers. We hope that the supply chain digital readiness tool can assist manufacturers with identifying opportunities to use digitisation to help their businesses to survive and thrive amidst the challenges of COVID-19. We are also offering manufacturers further advice.”

Alan Duncan, Senior Director of Manufacturing Strategy at Blue Yonder, adds: “They say ‘the wise man built his house on the rock,’ and when they’re rebuilding after COVID-19, manufacturers must put resilient digital supply chains at the centre of operations. Manufacturers have been investing more in the move to digital supply chains in recent years, but it’s crucial that their plans are pushed through to fruition. A digital supply chain will give them the end-to-end visibility, resilience and agility required to emerge from pandemic disruption in the strongest manner possible.”

 

ENDS

4 MARCH 2021

NOTES TO EDITORS

The data comes from a WMG survey of 248 manufacturers in September 2020.

High-res images available at:

https://warwick.ac.uk/services/communications/medialibrary/images/january2019/jangodsell250.jpg

Caption: Professor Jan Godsell, WMG, University of Warwick

Credit: WMG, University of Warwick

For further information please contact:

Alice Scott

Media Relations Manager – Science

University of Warwick

Tel: +44 (0) 7920 531 221

E-mail: alice.j.scott@warwick.ac.uk

Thu 04 Mar 2021, 14:41 | Tags: Supply Chains Jan Godsell Research Manufacturing

The three key actions to secure supply chain resilience after Brexit and COVID

Brexit and COVID were two major disruptions to manufacturers’ supply chains, however, a consortium of academic and industry partners including WMG, University of Warwick has identified key ways to build supply chain resilience.

A report by researchers from WMG, University of Warwick in conjunction with Argon & Co, Tata Consumer Products Ltd and Pinsent Masons has highlighted three practical solutions for supply chain resilience:

1. Risk management – Identifying risks throughout the supply chain to make wise decisions

2. Buffer management – Utilising inventory and capacity in the supply chain to react in a timely manner

3. Contract management – Increasing contracting agility to build a close tie with business partners

Supply chains have been under a significant amount of stress over the last year with Brexit and COVID-19, with three in four organisations likely to experience disruptions. Therefore, their resilience is key to recovery.

The complexity of supply chains means that disruptions can happen at any time. When COVID-19 hit the world in early 2020 firms had little time to prepare,Types of supply chain resilient strategies pre-disruption, during disruption and post-disruption. Credit: WMG, University of Warwick but the report found that those that were able to adapt, supply flexibility and buffer manage were able to deal with the disruption more effectively.

Huge uncertainties lie ahead when it comes to Brexit, however with time to prepare, the industries can be ready for a number of different scenarios. Research has found the use of proactive practices such as planning and visibility and collaboration were effective in initial Brexit preparation.

In order to improve supply chain resilience it’s essential that there is an understanding of what exactly supply chain resilience is and planning ahead for it. Assessing just how resilient a manufacturer is by identifying vulnerable areas is the first step in preventing disruption.

This then leads onto managing buffers, for example optimising inventory stocks and production capacity, and with that being cooperative. A coordinated approach to supply chain planning enables great visibility and mitigates risks.

Professor Jan Godsell, from WMG, University of Warwick comments:
“Supply chain risks will always be unavoidable, however the quick succession of Brexit and COVID has rung a bell for suppliers to be prepared for any situation that may arise. Areas of preparation include identifying risk throughout the supply chain to inform better decisions, managing buffers to respond faster and adopting flexible contracting enables greater collaboration.

“We encourage all firms to consider these solutions, so their supply chain is more resilient and that ultimately they’ll be more sustainable in the long term.”

Clare Francis, partner at Pinsent Masons LLP adds:

“The last year has seen supply chains disrupted on an unparalleled scale. As businesses have moved from the initial challenges of ensuring supplies in the short-term they now need to focus on rebuilding resilient supply chains for the future. There are a number of areas that businesses must consider when doing this but they have an opportunity to learn from the lessons of Covid-19 and implement more resilient and better supply chains for the future.”

ENDS

23 FEBRUARY 2021

NOTES TO EDITORS

High-res images available at:

https://warwick.ac.uk/services/communications/medialibrary/images/february_2021/jan_godsell_supply_chain_resilience_figure_1.jpg
Caption: Types of supply chain resilient strategies pre-disruption, during disruption and post-disruption.
Credit: WMG, University of Warwick

Report available to view at: https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/sci/wmg/business/supply_chain_resilience_hub_report_-_final.pdf

For further information please contact:

Alice Scott
Media Relations Manager – Science
University of Warwick
Tel: +44 (0) 7920 531 221
E-mail: alice.j.scott@warwick.ac.uk

 

Tue 23 Feb 2021, 14:56 | Tags: Supply Chains Partnerships Research

WMG working with Stratford Upon Avon Town Council on new research into sustainable transport

WMG, at the University of Warwick, is working with TravelSpirit Foundation on a government funded project which will focus on how new technologies could help create sustainable transport systems in Stratford upon Avon, Warwickshire.

Project Damascus is supported by Stratford Climate Action and Stratford upon Avon Town Council and has received funding from the Government’s Geospatial Commission. The first stage of the research, is a 3-month desktop study in Stratford upon Avon and Canterbury. The project is looking to shed light on how consolidating parcel journeys using mobility hubs could create a more pleasant experience for visitors and residents of Stratford upon Avon.

Professor Jan GodsellJanet Godsell, Professor of Operations and Supply Chain Strategy at WMG, University of Warwick is providing expert advice to the project. She said “This is an important piece of research. It has strong alignment with the government’s Green Industrial Revolution strategy and could have a widespread positive impact on many UK towns outside the larger metropolitan cities.”

Project Damascus is led by Simon Herko, President of the Travelspirit Foundation, working in consortium with Iconic Blockchain, Peera and WMG, University of Warwick and was awarded funding through a competition delivered by Innovate UK.

The research team is interested to hear from people who already shop online, local courier drivers and retailers who sell to customers online. For more information, including opportunities to get directly involved in the research, please contact:

TravelSpirit Foundation, Simon Herko simon.herko@travelspirit.io 

Stratford Climate Action: Stephen Norrie stratfordclimate@tutanota.com

Stratford Town Council: Jenny Fradgley Jenny.Fradgley@stratford-tc.gov.uk

Fri 08 Jan 2021, 07:06 | Tags: Supply Chains Partnerships Research

Restarting the aluminium industry in the Black Country

The Black Country in Birmingham was the energy and innovation stomping ground in the 18th and 19th century, creating the UK’s industrial economy. Fast forward to the 21st century there is now a need to make a business model that’s more economically and environmentally sustainable.

With the help of WMG, University of Warwick, the Black Country LEP have made a future business model for Aluminium in the Black Country based on the The Phoenix 10 Siteprovision of low carbon energy sources, as part of a project Repowering the Black Country, which aims to make the Black Country the world’s first zero carbon industrial cluster.

The aim of the project is to enable clean GVA growth of £16bn by 2030, creating or safeguarding at least 20,000 skilled jobs. Thanks to funding from Innovate UK researchers from WMG specifically looked at the Aluminium Industry in the area.

The researchers report that if the Black Country Strategic Economic Plan forecasts GVA growth of £16bn by 2030. The growth will be driven by reshoring of manufacturing from overseas and organic growth, particularly in high value manufacturing, building, transport and environmental technology sectors where the Black Country has long-standing strengths.

However, if this growth simply follows the structural templates and energy practices of the past, annual CO2 emissions from Black Country industry will almost double to 2.3M tCO2.

To deliver green growth and meet UK industrial strategy objectives researchers from WMG propose that the Black Country needs to take the opportunities created by Brexit and Recovery from Covid-19 to reconfigure and repower its industrial base and create a fundamentally new economic model for the area.

Professor Jan Godsell, from WMG, University of Warwick explains:

“This has been an exciting project for WMG to get involved in. By using circular supply chain principles, we’ve been able to demonstrate how re-industrialising around low carbon energy hubs in the West Midlands can help meet our net-zero carbon goal by 2050 but also create value-adding jobs for the region.”

Since the project has completed The Black Country Consortium has been awarded funding from UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) to support clean industrial growth through the Repowering the Black Country Project. This second round of funding, focused on helping the UK achieve net zero emissions as part of Government’s Clean Growth Strategy, will support businesses and local authorities in developing plans for zero carbon hubs and reducing energy costs across the Black Country.

Funded by UK Research and Innovation, on behalf of the UK government, Repowering the Black Country is one of only 7 projects funded nationally focused on helping the UK achieve net zero emissions by 2050 as part of the Industrial Decarbonisation Challenge. This is a key component of the government’s Clean Growth Strategy.

Tom Westley DL, Chair of the Black Country LEP Board said:
“This funding is another step toward the Black Country putting in place plans to decarbonise our industrial supply chains and lead the way nationally for industrial clean energy. The Repowering the Black Country project is a real partnership approach to planning for the future of our world-class industrial sector.

“This boost will enable the team to work across the Black Country with local authorities and industry to develop zero carbon industrial estates that optimise and generate clean energy in the most efficient way. Zero carbon means lower energy bills, lower carbon emissions and commercial opportunities locally – all of which will be good news for the Black Country economy.”

Energy Minister Kwasi Kwarteng said:
“The UK is leading the world’s green industrial revolution, with ambitious targets to decarbonise our economy and create hundreds of thousands of jobs.

“As we continue to level up the UK economy and build back greener, we must ensure every sector is reducing carbon emissions to help us achieve our commitment to net zero emissions by 2050.
“This funding will help key industrial areas meet the challenge of contributing to our cleaner future while maintaining their productive and competitive strengths.”

Andy Street, the Mayor of the West Midlands, said:

“Our region’s plan for economic recovery is all about delivering the high-paid, high skilled, ‘green’ jobs of the future. So this funding partnership is both good news for West Midlands jobs and industry, helping businesses grow while using less energy. So it’s great news for our environment.

“The West Midlands Combined Authority has an ambitious #WM2041 plan for the region to be carbon neutral by 2041. This Government funding for clean industrial development in the Black Country will help our region build on its long history of manufacturing, building a green economy that’s good for jobs and good for the planet.”

ENDS

7 JANUARY 2021

NOTES TO EDITORS

Images available at:
https://warwick.ac.uk/services/communications/medialibrary/images/january_2021/repowering_jpeg.jpg
Caption: The Phoenix 10 site in the Black Country

Report available to view at: https://www.blackcountrylep.co.uk/upload/files/Repowering%20the%20Black%20Country%20A%20prospectus%20to%20lead%20a%20clean%20growth%20revolution%20in%20the%20UK.pdf

For further information please contact:

Alice Scott
Media Relations Manager – Science
University of Warwick
Tel: +44 (0) 7920 531 221
E-mail: alice.j.scott@warwick.ac.uk

 

Thu 07 Jan 2021, 13:57 | Tags: Supply Chains Partnerships Research

New engineering partnership to develop digital marketplace to improve manufacturing supply chain

A research team, including WMG at the University of Warwick, led by Swansea University College of Engineering, are developing a pilot online marketplace designed to optimise manufacturing supply chain networks and create a new industry-wide business model.

This new platform will seek to better connect manufacturers and suppliers, enabling a streamlined product/process sourcing and selection service tailored to industry needs, with the support of the Institute for Innovative Materials, Processing and Numerical Technologies (IMPACT).

The project will initially focus on supporting Welsh manufacturing companies with the aim to create an innovative digital supply chain marketplace (DSCM) template that can be replicated nationally and globally. One of the first companies to trial the new platform will be Swansea-based company MyMaskFit. Their aim is to produce custom fit reusable PPE masks for use during and beyond the COVID-19 pandemic. Customers will send a scanned image of their face to the company via an app designed to record the dimensions needed to create the bespoke product.

A challenge for many companies, like MyMaskFit, is often creating a new supply chain and sourcing the many products and services required to bring regulated products to market.

Unifying shared expertise with industry experts and researchers from WMG, University of Warwick and the Manufacturing Technology Centre, this new partnership will offer companies, like MyMaskFit, access to a more open and dynamic market, with increased opportunity for UK SMEs, and by making markets more efficient and flexible, should raise productivity and open new value chains through wider reach.

Professor Jan GodsellJan Godsell, Professor of Operations and Supply Chain Strategy, WMG, University of Warwick, comments: “Major disruptions such as COVID-19 have challenged the conventional and static design of supply chains. Market places have an important role to play in connecting UK manufacturers with the emerging demand for new products and services. They support the development of new types of business models and dynamic supply chain designs, that will underpin the future of UK manufacturing. Self-assessment tools, roadmaps and blue prints will be made available through the ISCF Supply Chain Innovation Hub, so that these opportunities can be exploited by firms across the UK”.

“The challenge of existing marketplaces is that the relevance and quality of data is subjected to manual scrutiny and intervention,” comments project lead, Professor Johann Sienz, Deputy Executive Dean, Faculty of Science and Engineering and IMPACT Director. “This marketplace will be designed to provide visibility and access to supply chain processes and will deliver live validated and relevant data to make decisions. It will be valuable to the supplier through creation of ‘one supplier-to-many customers’ with the additional benefits of reducing administrating expenses, and maximises volume leverage, with less IT integration requirement.”

“This ‘Made Smarter’ testbed will act as a template for other digital supply chain marketplaces to be created to serve other sectors, geographies and verticals, for instance exclusive communities for highly regulated industries, where trust in the access, integrity, and security of information is critical.”

Driven by industry feedback, this new DSCM will offer much-needed features such as accuracy and precision for parts; pricing accuracy; reduced supplier response times from weeks to hours; and provide options with dynamic lead times and quality, cost, certainty – resulting in a quicker and more efficient supply chain process.

Valerie Bednar, MyMaskFit Director, comments: “MyMaskFit is pleased to deliver a programme to the Manufacturing Made Smarter Testbed where we hope to prove the success of sourcing in the regulated digital supply chain marketplace for components of our Reusable and Custom fitted medical grade mask.

As part of this 6-month project, a rapid scale-up of manufacturing operations is planned involving manufacturing partners – including cloud collaboration tools from design and manufacturing software company Autodesk.

Asif Moghal, Senior Industry Manager, Design and Manufacturing at Autodesk comments: “This is another great example of how the industry is coming together and rising to a new challenge. Protecting our key workers is essential and we have an opportunity to bring about new learnings from this rapid development project featuring personalised masks. We are confident this will be a transformative step for the industry, with the potential to scale globally and pass learnings onto other industries.”

The project is funded by the ISCF Manufacturing Made Smarter programme and will conclude in May 2021. Industrial partners also include Plyable, Amplyfi, AI Idea Factory, PXL ICE, Carapace, Cadarn and Industry Wales.

The IMPACT operation is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund through the Welsh Government and Swansea University.

ENDS

For further information please contact:

Alice Scott
Media Relations Manager - Science
University of Warwick
Tel: +44 (0) 7920 531 221
E-mail: alice.j.scott@warwick.ac.uk

 

Tue 24 Nov 2020, 10:23 | Tags: Supply Chains Partnerships Research

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