Symposium on Innovations and Sustainability

22-23 August 2017

Call For Abstracts

Sustainability has become a grave concern for humanity in general and for countries of emerging markets in particular, such as China and India, due to their sheer size and market growth potential. These countries are in dire need to transform their economies to ones of higher value added and more environmental friendliness as they are now experiencing pollution of air and water, depletion of natural resources, labor unrest, and other consequences of rapid industrialization and of having been the world’s low-cost manufacturing base. To say that sustainability requires innovations in product, process and value chain is to state the obvious, but this is exactly where operations management can have a great impact.

The Chinese President is advocating the One-Belt One-Road initiative, revitalizing the old land Silk Road and developing the new sea Silk Road. The initiative will affect many countries in South-east Asia, South Asia, Middle East, Africa, and Europe. Companies are redesigning their value chains in response. The need to advance the study of value chain innovation is particularly evident when it comes to sustainability for providing both environmental benefits and superior product performance for a profit.

We ask:

  • China is viewed by many as the "factory of the world". What is China doing in sustainability? How effectively?
  • How can cultural, geographical and organizational barriers affect the advancement of sustainability? What types of operational innovations may circumvent these barriers?
  • Can we innovate in product and process design to induce sustainability? Can we innovate in operations in a particular business context so that sustainability-friendly practice becomes a natural outcome?
  • How can value chain design be paired with new technologies to achieve commercial viability for new or existing green products?
  • How to identify and evaluate new promising green technologies against the backdrop of particular economic and business contexts?
  • How to use byproducts of the main manufacturing process to minimize long-last impact on the environment?
  • How to innovate the value chain to minimize the negative externalities that multiple players impose on one another? What guidelines can be developed to facilitate sustainability in value chain design?

You are invited to present papers concerning these and other related critical issues in environmental and sustainability challenges. The symposium aims to sharpen the focus on, and raise the awareness of, these critical issues, especially those facing developing economies like China and India, and to promote the exchange in current research, including empirical and case studies, on specific sustainability related problems and innovative ways and leading practices to address these problems. The organizers hope that the symposium will stimulate greater concern and effort in this increasingly more important endeavor.