First Advisor

Lee Buddress

Date of Publication

Spring 5-22-2014

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Systems Science: Business Administration


Systems Science




Exports -- India, Business logistics -- India, Labor supply -- India, Risk management



Physical Description

1 online resource (vii, 228 pages)


With an annual growth of almost 20% since the year 2000, Indian merchandise exports exceeded 300 billion U.S. dollars in 2012. The country is becoming a major supplier to the world. However, companies sourcing products and operating in India are experiencing a variety of supply chain disruptions that impede their operations and finances. The purpose of this dissertation is to investigate the frequency, impact and severity of supply chain risks experienced by companies in India, as well as assess the usefulness of mitigation methods and enquire about future expected disruptions. It is hoped that the results will prepare managers to better prioritize their supply chain risk management efforts and investments. The scope of this study is upstream (sourcing and operations) disruptions that affected Indian supply chains over the past three years, including the areas of logistics and transportation. The methodology is a quantitative, empirical study, using a survey instrument in the form of a questionnaire distributed electronically to thousands of members of four prominent trade associations in India. The platform for the questionnaire is a modification of a traditional risk analysis progression: mapping, identifying, assessing, mitigating and improving, also dubbed "MIAMI".

The main findings are that there are major and significant differences in severity (frequency and impact) between the thirteen risk categories presented. There are also significant group differences among the respondents. Traditional mitigation methods differ with respect to usefulness, and expected risks are somewhat different than past risks. Conclusions reached are that chronic risks such as inadequate transportation, logistics and utilities infrastructure, supplier and labor problems, and bureaucracy/red tape are more severe than highly publicized and visible risks such as natural disasters, terrorism and crime. Traditional mitigation methods are useful for many of the disruptions, but ineffective for non-physical risks. There is a certain optimism with respect to future infrastructure related disruptions.

Limitations of the study include a relatively low response rate, the classic difficulty in risk analysis of comparing and scaling the impact of disruptions, and that it is not fine grained enough to fully describe any specific industry sectors. This study contributes to the field of supply chain risk management by adding crucial empirical information from a heretofore unexplored market.


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